For the fifth time since 2008, Holiday Valley Resort and Ellicottville, NY will play host to the International Bowhunting Organization (IBO) World Championship August 7-10, 2014. This event is expected to attract upwards of 1,800 qualifying shooters and their families from over twenty countries to participate and contend for title of IBO World Champion and their share of over $100,000 in cash and prizes.
Quick IBO Refresher: The IBO was established in 1984 by a group of avid bowhunters who collectively shared the passions and principles of bowhunting and wildlife conservation. They wanted these passions and principals to be enjoyed and passed on to future generations, and so they created the International Bowhunting Organization. The IBO World Championship first came to Holiday Valley in 2008 after representatives from the Ellicottville Chamber of Commerce and Holiday Valley attended IBO events at other locations. They were certain that they could make Ellicottville a key venue, and their efforts ultimately created a dynamic partnership. IBO organizers liked the layout of Holiday Valley Resort so much that they decided to return the following three years (2009 through 2011), and now again in 2014. The organization found the nearby lodging attractive, as well as the proximity of the village and the array of amenities that this area has to offer.
IBO President Bryan Marcum is very excited to bring the IBO tournament back to Holiday Valley. “The town and resort has a great atmosphere and a beautiful setting for our competitors and their families. Our members really enjoyed being there!”
Although the IBO World Championship in Ellicottville is advertised for Aug. 7-10, the archers and their families will actually make their entry into town on Aug. 4. “The Spruce Lake chairlift will start running Monday to transport participants to the Defense (practice) range that is set up around the lake,” said Jane Eshbaugh, Marketing Director at Holiday Valley. “Starting Friday, it will also transport competitors to several of the courses. Spectators are welcome to ride the lift for $5.00 to observe the competitors and to access the lake.”
Brian McFadden, Executive Director of the Ellicottville Chamber of Commerce who is also managing the Vendor Market for the tournament, noted that a Bowhunters Marketplace featuring over sixty vendors will be set up in the parking lot of Yodeler Lodge. “Bowhunters and event-goers will find a variety of related supplies from our participating vendors, including 3-D targets, bows, arrows, specialty equipment and clothing.” And for those needing a cool-down from the hot sun, you’ll find ice cream at the marketplace too!
To familiarize the non-professional bowhunter with this world class championship, one must compete in qualifying shoots throughout the year and place in the top 20 scores in their class to secure a spot in the championship. There are over 7,000 members of this philanthropic organization from countries such as Australia, South Africa, Germany, Canada, and Spain - only the best of the best have made their way to the top to represent their country in this final competition.
In describing how the tournament works, Jane Eshbaugh summed it up modestly, even though this competition is anything but simple. She said, “The wooded area between the ski trails is used for competition. There are paths that lead to a shooting stake, which competitors must touch while firing at a 3-D target that is strategically placed in the woods or over a rise that in some way challenges the shooter’s skills. The bowhunter then tries to place their arrow within their kill zone of the target. There are targets of all kinds out there, including bears, deer, big horn sheep, mountain goats, mountain lions and even alligators!” She added, “Watching the shoots is a lot like watching a golf tournament - silence is definitely appreciated.”
Those of you who are not professional bowhunters can still claim a little piece of the action! The IBO World Championship offers amateur bowhunt events, providing a unique opportunity for non-qualified shooters to compete on the very same course as the world qualifiers. “There are pros, amateurs, men, women, children and a handicapped division,” explained Eshbaugh, “and there are separate classes depending on the type of bow. There is something for everybody during this tournament!”
As August approaches, clear some space from your calendar so that you and your family can attend and enjoy the 2014 IBO World Championship at Holiday Valley Aug. 7-10. Come experience the passions of bowhunting and take in a remarkable family atmosphere during this ever-impressive world class event.
“We love the IBO!” concludes Eshbaugh. “The competitors and their families are genuinely nice people. It’s great to have them here in our town.”
For additional information about this year’s IBO World Championship, including a detailed description on the course layout and for registration information, click over to www.holidayvalley.com or www.ibo.net, or call Holiday Valley at 716-699-2345 or the Ellicottville Chamber of Commerce at 800-349-9099.