From August 3 - 5 Red Feather Ridge hosted around 200 members (from all across the western provinces) and non-members combined of the Alberta Traditional Bowhunters Association (ATBA) for their 2019 Heritage Classic Jamboree.
ATBA president Ben Dobrowolsky said, “We have been banded together for 16 years, since 2003 and this is our 15th Jamboree. We have a big shoot every August long weekend and it’s called the Heritage Classic Jamboree because it is held on the Heritage Day long weekend.”
According to Dobrowolsky the ATBA started with half a dozen executive members originally with a president and vice president and is an affiliate under the parent organization Alberta Bowhunters Association (ABA). Dobrowolsky mentioned that the president of the ABA Brent Watson was also in attendance for the weekend Jamboree.
Dobrowolsky also said, “When we started we had to borrow targets, borrow trailers. We had people from all around the province and that is what spurred on the provincial feeling behind the organization. Now, over the last 15 years past presidents had done such a good job fundraising and organizing that now we are 100 per cent self-sufficient for all of our own events; we now have organizations and clubs asking us to borrow our equipment, rather than the other way around, and that’s thanks to great partner clubs like the Vermilion River Archers; without them we wouldn’t be putting the shoot on this weekend.”
During the opening ceremonies on August 3, president of the Vermilion River Archers Orest Popil said, “I would like to thank everyone for coming. Today we recognize that we are gathered on Treaty 6 land and home of the Vermilion River Archers. The Vermilion River Archers is a club steeped with tradition and value and one of the longest-running archery clubs in the province.”
The three-day Jamboree provided the attendee’s opportunities for adventure with two courses equipped with 3D targets, novelty shoots, and a couple of gopher hunts, as well as, medics on site in case of any type of medical emergency.
“The gopher hunts provide the members the opportunity for practice and comradery, as well as the opportunity for a group hunt,” said Dobrowolsky.
The weekend also offered a wine and cheese event which was sponsored by local business Harbrook and Paisley. A banquet supper was provided by their host for the weekend Red Feather Ridge. Les Lahey was the entertainment and beer was provided by Lakeland Brewery out of St. Paul.
“I would like to say a big thanks to the Vermilion River Archers for co-coordinating this event for us, without them it would be impossible. I also would like to thank Red Feather Ridge for hosting us because without a venue and organizers we would be out of luck,” said Dobrowolsky.