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Youth Programs

The Hunter Information & Training Program is heavily involved with partner conservation groups promoting youth programs around the state.

National Archery in the Schools Program (NASP)

Group of young archers in a classroom with their bows The National Archery in the Schools Program (NASP) is a nationwide youth archery program developed in Kentucky in 2002. NASP promotes:

  • Self-confidence & discipline
  • Team work
  • Physical fitness
  • Participation in the lifelong sport of archery

The program’s focus is to provide international-style target archery in a physical education environment to 4th-12th graders. Archery is a sport that nearly everyone can be successful at regardless of age, gender, size, or physical abilities. Statistics show that school archery programs engage more students in the educational process, improve classroom performance, and reduce dropout rates. Nationwide millions of students have safely participated in NASP, and more than 160 schools in Alaska participate in the NASP Program with more teachers being trained as Basic Archery Instructors (BAI) every year. Grants for equipment are often available and ADF&G schedules teacher training workshops as needed. Training workshops generally last eight hours, and can be scheduled on weekends or weekdays.

Learn more about NASP from this video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xm1CJGEGF44

ADF&G also hosts an annual virtual tournament for all Alaska elementary, middle, and high schools enrolled in the NASP Program. The virtual tournament is intended to give every student that participates in NASP during the school day, regardless of their skill level, the chance to compete with other archers around the state, without the time and expense of leaving their own gyms. Prizes will be awarded and shooters and coaches will receive t-shirts with their registration. Participants also have the opportunity to qualify for the National Tournament that is held in Kentucky every year. In the 2014–15 schoolyear, 758 students from across the state represented their school in the NASP State Tournament.

For more details about NASP, please contact the ADF&G NASP Coordinator Kirk Lingofelt (907-267-2534 or dfg.dwc.hit.nasp@alaska.gov).

How to Get NASP Started at Your School

  • Have your Principal fill-out the School Agreement
  • Work with the NASP Coordinator to purchase equipment for your school (this is a great opportunity to get your community and PTA involved)
  • Set-up a training date to get yourself and other staff at your school trained as Basic Archery Instructors (BAI)
  • Run NASP during the school day and watch your students get excited about archery!

Rabbit Creek Youth Shotgun League

Rabbit Creek Youth Shotgun League is built on the foundation of positive reinforcement and individual improvement. In the youth league there is absolutely no pressure to "win." We will assist each league member in setting realistic personal goals for improvement over the course of the league activities. We always need parents to get involved with coaching and provide training for parents who are interested in coaching their child's team. The clay target sports provide a lifetime of shooting opportunities. Success in the clay target sports emphasizes teamwork, endurance, fine motor skills, psychological focus and hand-eye coordination. Several clay target sports, including trap and skeet are Olympic events!

Rabbit Creek Youth Rimfire League

The Youth Rimfire League at Rabbit Creek Shooting Park's purpose is to provide new or inexperienced shooters a safe and supervised program to develop consistency and accuracy in rifle marksmanship. The focus is on individual improvement and discipline. The League will follow the Winchester/NRA Marksmanship Qualification Program, specifically the Rimfire Rifle Qualification.

Outdoor Youth Days camp activity Outdoor Youth Days

In Southcentral Alaska, Outdoor Youth Days is hosted at Rabbit Creek Shooting Park in Anchorage and features firearms safety, archery, rifle, shotgunning, wildlife ID, fishing, orienteering, and outdoor survival among other skills. Outdoor Youth Days are held during the month of June. There are plans in the works to expand this program into the Mat-Su Valley. For more information on Southcentral opportunities, contact (907) 267-2534.

Explore Bowhunting

Explore Bowhunting is an educational program designed to help instructors, program leaders, and educators teach students, ages 11–17 the basic skills of bowhunting. It was created by the Archery Trade Association to spark interest in and passion for bowhunting in today's youth, recognizing that through hands-on experience, students will gain confidence interacting with the natural environment, and strengthen their appreciation for wildlife and the outdoors.

Explore bowhunting image

The Explore Bowhunting program can be used in:

  • Schools
  • Scouting
  • 4-H
  • Summer Camps

The Explore Bowhunting program is more than a tool to teach bowhunting, it is an engaging, hands-on, activity-based program that examines animal behavior and emphasizes the use of senses. It introduces the challenge and thrill of being close enough to hunt, photograph, or simply view wildlife.

For more information contact Ginamaria Smith at (907) 267-2196.