By Conrad Dudderar
Senior Staff Writer
Yukon’s “Small Business of the Year” will host a benefit next month for Canadian County’s largest social services non-profit agency.
The Youth & Family Services benefit shoot will be 1-4 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 17 at Archery Traditions of Oklahoma, 328 Elm in Old Mill Plaza.
The event will be an afternoon full of indoor 3D course shooting, raffles and fun for a great cause.
“Our benefit shoot is a CD shoot with all the life-size animal targets,” Archery Traditions owner Ken Wilkins said. “We make an indoor course in our range.
“It’s open to everyone, regardless of their skill level. We do have rental equipment available for those who don’t have their own and want to come shoot. People are welcome to just come and watch.”
People of all ages and experience are welcome. Registration for the 3D shooting will be $20 for adults and $10 for youth 12 and under.
“Last year was our first benefit shoot for Canadian County Youth & Family Services,” Wilkins said. “We wanted to continue that. We have some good friends who have adopted several kids through their program. We know what they do and we have a heart for kids, especially those who are displaced and in foster care or waiting to be adopted.”
Youth & Family Services is a non-profit organization that receives no government funding, Wilkins noted.
About 50 shooters participated in the first Youth & Family Services benefit shoot and Wilkins hopes to double that number Aug. 17.
“It’s a lot of fun,” she said. “It’s not a competition at all. It’s kind of like a bowling league. It’s just people getting together that have a common interest who enjoy fellowship and raising money for a good cause.”
The success of last year’s fund-raising shoot was a major reason Archery Traditions was honored in January with the Yukon Chamber of Commerce’s 2018 “Small Business of the Year” award.
That event raised more than $4,000 to benefit more than 2,600 people served annually by Youth & Family Services.
A large portion of the funds collected at the inaugural Youth & Family Services benefit shoot was raised through raffles of several dozen items donated by individuals, businesses and groups.
“We had all kinds of stuff; not just archery-related,” Wilkins said. “We had car services, gift baskets and even a deer-hunting rifle. That brings in as much or more.
“We had a lot of people who came out and didn’t shoot the course, but they bought raffle tickets to support Youth & Family Services. Many people came to watch some of the shooting and just enjoy the festivities.”
Anyone interested in donating raffle items or participating in the Aug. 17 benefit shoot should call Archery Traditions at 350-1100.
“We want to ‘up the game’ from last year,” Wilkins said. “We had a good turnout of shooters and number of raffle items last year but I’d like to see that increase.
“It’s open to all shooters, traditional and compound. Our goal is to get as many shooters so we can raise as much money on that side of it as well.”
45 YEARS OF SERVICE
Youth & Family Services formed in 1974 to meet a critical community need for emergency shelter for abused and neglected children in Canadian County.
The 2007 opening of the Donald W. Reynolds Caring Center, 7565 E Hwy 66 in El Reno, transformed the agency. The facility includes two buildings, a family services center and an emergency shelter.
Youth & Family Services has more than 10 programs serving Canadian and surrounding counties.
Besides the emergency youth shelter, programs include counseling, school consultation, youth GED/educational services, mentoring, tutoring, independent living, youth employment services, parent training courses, drug and alcohol education, and first-offender programs.
Youth & Family Services’ motto is “Caring today for better tomorrows.”
YFS executive director is John Schneider. Board members are: President Terry Corbett, Vice President Jamie Allen, Treasurer Tim Rooney, Secretary Marquia Johnson, John Gooden, Nathan Richter, Stan Steffen, Craig McVay, and Tangi Smith.
ABOUT ARCHERY TRADITIONS
Archery Traditions, which opened in 2015, provides adults and children alike with healthy competition in a fun, family friendly environment.
Archery Traditions of Oklahoma’s 10,000 square foot facility just south of Main Street (Route 66) features an indoor range offering 21 shooting lanes. All bow types are welcome, including traditional and compound, as well as crossbows.
Archers enjoy shooting at Archery Tradition’s unique indoor 3D range that features more than 20 targets that represent the State of Oklahoma.
Archery Traditions of Oklahoma has a traditional pro shop for all archery needs. The business carries a full inventory of bows and accessories for all price points and skill levels.
For more information, call 350-1100.