West Virginia Archery in Schools Program Deadline Approaching

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The West Virginia Division of Natural Resource's Wildlife Resources Section (DNR) will host an Archery in the Schools (AIS) Program training Jan 19-20, 2010, at the Gander Mountain Store in South Charleston, according to Jerry Westfall, DNR's AIS Program Coordinator.

"Gander Mountain has always been committed to getting our youth involved in the outdoors," said Greg Walls, Store Manager for Gander Mountain. "We've seen the success and growth of the DNR's AIS Program with the number of kids coming into our archery department, and we are happy to be assisting schools in the Kanawha Valley, and elsewhere, by hosting this training."

The AIS Program is the DNR's largest and fastest growing educational program. Since its inception in 2004, approximately 40,000 students have been introduced to archery as part of their physical education (PE) classes in 199 West Virginia schools. The program teaches Olympic-style, target archery in both public and private school's Grade 4-12 PE classes.

"However, in order for schools to have the AIS Program, they must first have a certified instructor - preferably a PE instructor or coach who will introduce as many kids as possible to the joys of target archery," said Westfall. "The DNR has about four trainings a year; and, because class size is limited to 25, training slots are highly sought after. To ensure a training slot, we encourage PE teachers and coaches to apply as soon as possible, before the Jan. 8 deadline." As an added incentive, teachers taking this training may be eligible to receive Continuing Education Hours (CEH's).

Please note this training will cost $25 for all school employees and $50 for non-school employees. This fee will be paid to WVDNR - Archery in the Schools Program (via check, money order, or exact currency only) during the first morning of the training.

To register for the AIS training at the Gander Mountain Store in South Charleston, please call Billie Shearer at 304-558-2771; e-mail billieshearer@wvdnr.gov. For general information on the AIS Program, you can visit the DNR's AIS Web site at www.wvdnr.gov/archery or call DNR's AIS Program Coordinator Jerry Westfall at 304-558-2771; email jerrywestfall@wvdnr.gov.