MALDEN, Mo. – The Missouri Department of Conservation announces a grant that will help bring a new archery range to the City of Malden. The City of Malden will receive the Conservation Department's Community Archery Grant.
According to AJ Hendershott, the Outreach and Education Regional Supervisor for the MDC's Southeast Region, the $5,000 reimbursement grant is designed to broaden the availability of conservation opportunities to the citizens of Missouri by helping to increase archery opportunities. He said the grant falls right in line with the Department's goal to help people discover nature.
"Archery is a safe and family-oriented activity," he said. "It's not just that it's a fun activity, studies have shown how youth that participate in archery show improved academic scores and reduced behavior difficulty, which make this addition a healthy one for any community."
The City of Malden doesn't currently have any type of archery facility. Ashley Smith, the office assistant for the city administrator, said the city's goal is to construct the archery range where the community can engage in outdoor activities while enjoying nature at the Hank Watson Memorial Park. The area is approximately 90 acres of beautiful rolling land covered with pine trees and a winding walking path. A nature area abundant with native wildflowers is in bloom which covers approximately 19 acres of the land.
"We're hopeful that the development of Hank Watson Memorial Park and the construction of the archery range will attract people of all ages throughout the city and from surrounding communities," Smith said. "It's our wish that people will travel from miles around to enjoy and utilize our facilities."
Smith said the city's plan is to construct the archery range with eight stations, each with a hanging target on a wooden frame. Two targets will be positioned at 10 yards, 20 yards, 30 yards and 40 yards. A roof will be constructed atop each frame to protect the targets from weather and to increase longevity.
"From the conservation perspective, we're pleased this grant will help a community move along with their plans to provide more nature experiences to their community," Hendershott said, adding that he hopes more communities, or even schools and universities, will consider applying for the grant in the future.
"Archery is a simple and rewarding sport to pick up, plus it allows you spend more time outdoors which is good for all of us," he said. "It's an incredibly safe sport with related injury numbers so low it's the second safest sport behind table tennis."
Smith said the Park and Recreation Board is in the process of ordering equipment for the range, which is projected to open to the public in the spring of 2015.
For more information about the new archery range in the City of Malden, contact City Hall at (573) 276-4502. For more information about opportunities to discover nature through archery, go online to mdc.mo.gov.
This press release is a collaborative effort between the City of Malden and the Missouri Department of Conservation. For questions regarding the new archery range, please contact Malden City Hall at (573)276-4502. For questions about the Community Archery Grant, please contact your local MDC office.