It has not been easy to afford an archer that competes nationally and internationally in archery. These days, ensuring traveling to all the required tournaments is a constant battle of budgeting. Archery tournaments for this parent start in February and typically ends by September. Not every month has a tournament. However, every month this parent has a savings budget.
Over the years, things have been canceled, like satellite tv. This archery parent lives in an “older” community with amazing thrift shops. Many items needed for the house and kitchen are purchased at thrift stores. Items that the archer needed have been made vs. purchased.
This past year, with the USAT benefits, a large tournament target was purchased for shipping only! However, it needed a stand. Well, we made one. Hay pallets and scrape wood on the property were gathered. The archer build it himself. However, after a very windy day and a target that fell and broke three very pricey arrows, this parent, went with him to secure. With large rocks and bungee cords, it is solid. IT IS NOT PRETTY!
Honestly, not sure this parent wants to even share a photo of our handy work. There was the making of a bow and arrow rack for the outdoor season. Pintrest and PV pipe…a bow stand was made. Due to amount of arrows shoot, targets have been replaced yearly. Several have been re-stuffed by these hands, and recovered with the help of the man in the house. Trying to get every inch of life out of every purchase.
Ebay has helped sell off last years equipment or many items that were purchased with high hopes and that did not meet the needs of the archer. This money rolls into the purchase of other items needed. This parent has been an avid Ebay seller for years, this is always helped the income, as a stay at home mom.
Travel, is booked out months ahead, if possible. Tuesdays, are supposed to be the days that offer the best discounts. Some tournaments, driving the three hours to the big airport, rather than flying out of our lovely small airport, 15 minutes away, has helped the budget. It is a very popular local airport and during peak seasons, they charge way more that a tank and a half a gas for the round trip. Trying to stay at the same hotels with offer points and rewards, adds up. Typically each year there is at least one trip that hotel is paid with earned points. Rental cars, having rewards, gets you better deals and typically quickly in and out of the airport. Using AAA discounts where available.
Rarely, is anything purchased when away at tournaments. There are few souvenirs that have come home over the years that were purchased. However, this parent tries to buy a magnet at new locations for the frig. There is not a strict food budget at tournaments. However, most nights are either food brought to the hotel or a quick dinner with friends at affordable locations help. It is not necessary to be the über wealthy to have an archer competing, but it takes sacrifices. The archer’s dad always stays home to save money and care for our herd of animals, however, he hates traveling more that this archery parent…
One of the biggest sacrifices this parent makes is not having hair or nail done professionally. Rarely, is there a big purchase made. This parent is not looking for charity, we live a lovely blessed life. Not complaining, just stating, it is possible to budget. This year, only required tournaments have been added. Prior years, there were extras added in to the season. However, a used car is still needed for the archer and college is only a year away. We budget.
The archer, additionally, understands the budget. Any earnings at tournaments typically roll back into archery. For the past two summers, the archer has worked part-time at a bow shop. This is his money to use and save, but archery items are often purchased with the earnings. Additionally, work experience credits are earned in high school.
Archery is not an inexpensive sport. Most are not, especially at national level.
Not pretty, but functional…the ground has slope and possibly leaning.