Despite being hundreds of years out of date, archery has retained its cool factor. There is something about holding a loaded bow at full stretch, while aiming intently at a target with one eye closed that just feels inherently bad-arse. Archery is also great fun and is a relatively easy sport to get into.
Shooting a bow and arrow has the cool factor. Image by Laura Hale (Wikimedia Commons)
Diamond Valley Archers or DVA for short, host bi-weekly beginner sessions, where people from pretty much every age group are welcome to come along and try out shooting with a bow and arrows for a couple of hours. Saturday morning 10am-12:30pm is the most popular session with an alternative Monday beginners night from 7:30-9:30pm.
For only $15 per person which includes all equipment hire, DVA's beginner archery sessions are fantastic value for money. There is a range of bows available including recurve, crossbow, left-handed and children sized bows which ensures no-one is left out.
After getting kitted out, novice archers are shown to the beginner section of the range where staff explain DVA's logical and easy to remember shooting and safety rules. Stepping up to the shooting line, beginners are individually or in small groups instructed on the basics of positioning, loading, aiming and shooting at the affixed target 10 metres away. The session is fully supervised by DVA staff but it never feels like they are breathing down your neck, instead the friendly staff weave through the group asking each individual how they are going and offer welcome one-on-one attention and advice. As time progresses, staff mix it up by attaching balloons to the bullseye and if you are shooting well, moving the targets further back. The session ends with a progressive knock-out shooting game where winners receive a bar of chocolate as a reward - although this fun game doesn't seem to be played every week.
DVA's beginner archery sessions are a cheap and different thing to do. The friendly and safe atmosphere is enjoyed by a broad mix of people including families, teenagers, individuals and couples. Even if you decide archery isn't for you, it is a fun sport to try which provides bonus cool points.
Individuals can attend up to 15 beginner sessions per year but beyond this point, must become members of DVA and purchase their own equipment to continue shooting at the range.
Side Notes: In the event of rain, the Saturday morning beginner session will still go ahead but moves to DVA's indoor shooting range. Due to the limited space it is advisable to arrive extra early on a rainy day to secure a position.
Archery events are sometimes held at DVA on a weekend, it is worth checking ahead to make sure the beginner session is definitely running.
Diamond Valley Archers is located directly next door to the Yarrambut Park Golf Course, the two share an entrance from the main road. On a lazy Saturday after working up an appetite at DVA, head over to Yarrambut's clubhouse for their divine $6 coffee and cake deal.
After working up an appetite at DVA head to the neighbouring Yarrambut Park clubhouse to enjoy the $6 coffee and cake deal.