The city of West Des Moines is breaking ground on a new archery facility Monday afternoon, one that will draw people from all over the metro.
The archery range will be one of only three like it in the country. There are only two other ranges like it, one in Eden Prairie, Minnesota and one in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
The Iowa Department of Natural Resources approached the city of West Des Moines in 2011 about the possibility of putting an archery facility in the city. Leaders visited a similar facility in Minnesota and got excited about the project.
The Raccoon River Park Archery range will be built east of the baseball fields at Raccoon River Park. The range will be enclosed around the vertical walls, and will have rubber banding at the top so arrows cannot leave the facility, but it will be open to the air.
Gary Scott, the director of Parks and Recreation says the archery facility will appeal to various groups of archers included school age kids, hunters, and people wanting to learn after seeing local archers compete in the Olympics and Junior Olympics.
The archery range will cost $173,000 to build and the city got that money from several different donors.
“Polk County gave us a grant of about $75,000. We have a private foundation that raised $20,000. The DNR gave us $24,000,” says Scott.
Scott says the city will likely offer some archery programs once the facility is complete. It is expected to open to the public in the spring of 2014.
Monday’s groundbreaking is at 4:00 p.m. at Raccoon River Park and the public is invited to attend.