San Diego Archers
Established 1938 to expand and perpetuate the practice of archery and the spirit of good fellowship among archers
Rube Powell Archery Range
In 1994, the name of the Balboa Park Archery Range, located off of the Alcazar Parking lot, was changed to Rube Powell Archery Range to honor one of San Diego’s great athletes.
Rube Powell, a member of the San Diego Archers since the 1950’s, passed away some time ago. For this person, who gave the archery community so much, the members of San Diego Archers honored his memory with the renaming of the archery range after him.
Rube Powell was truly a gifted archer, whose accomplishments in Tournament Archery competition had not been equaled in his time. He was a winner of the prestigious National Field Archery Championships a record five times. In addition, he won too many Regional, State and Local tournaments to list here. Rube was elected to the National Archery Hall of Fame in 1976 and to the California State Hall of Fame in 1977.
For all of Rube Powell’s accomplishments, those who had the privilege of knowing him, remember him for what he gave back to the community by his love and support of archery.
History of San Diego Archers
San Diego Archers have been an active organization since it’s inception in 1938, growing stronger over the years. In the mid 1950’s, the San Diego Archers merged with the San Diego Field Archers. In 1992, the National City Turtle Archers merged with the San Diego Archers. The two clubs had been sharing both the Balboa Park Archery Range and the Morley Field Archery Range for a number of years.
The Rube Powell Archery Range has been in its present location since relocating from Gold Gulch in the late 1950’s. Prior to moving the target range to Morley Field, San Diego Archers’ original target range was on the south side of the intersection of 6th and Laurel.
The Balboa Park and Morley Field Archery Ranges are the last remaining public field archery ranges in Southern California. These ranges are maintained for the public use of all the archery community by the sole support of the members of the San Diego Archers.
The Balboa Park Archery Range has been the site of numerous National Archery Tournaments. In 1967, the range and San Diego Archers was the host of the Police Olympics Archery Competition, a competition that has been held on the range a total of 7 times, the last one in 2006. In 1987 the range was the site of the World Police and Fire Games Archery Competition and in 1993, host of the Senior Olympics Archery Competition. In 2006 it hosted the first Border Shoot, a competition between the California, Arizona, Baja California and Sonora states archers. It is an annual event that rotates each year to the winning state and a successful beginning to a tournament involving four classifications of archery styles.
In 1962, San Diego Archers held the first King Arthur’s Day Tournament, an archery event that has become an annual gathering of young and old attracting over 200 archers from California, Nevada, Arizona and Mexico.
Over the years Balboa Park Archery Range has supported other local clubs when their range was not available. In 1993 the San Diego County Bow Hunters utilized the range for several months when their range was washed out by flooding.
Archery in Southern California
The range name change from the Balboa Park Archery Range to the Rube Powell Archery Range was widely supported by the archers and archery clubs in Southern California. There are presently over 3,500 archers in Southern California who are registered with the California Bowhunters/State Archery Association. In San Diego County there are four archery clubs, Bear State Bowhunters in Escondido, Poway Valley Archers in Poway, San Diego County Bowhunters in Lakeside and San Diego Archers in San Diego representing a local membership of over 400 active participants. Members of San Diego Archers and archers in Southern California have become involved in the National Archery to the Schools Program (NASP), teaching teachers in the schools archery to students. A host of San Diego Archers members and individuals practicing at the ranges draw newcomers onto the Balboa Park Archery and Morley Field Ranges, guiding, befriending and enlarging the community with avid archers in the art and prowess of archery.
San Diego Archers hosts two tournaments, a work party to maintain and clean the ranges and a meeting each month. At Morley Field Archery Range, an annual State 900 Round is hosted drawing archers from all over California. An end of the year Championship Award is given for the highest scoring shooter in each category.
The Rube Powell Archery Range is an extremely popular community resource used by over 400 archers a week enjoying the sport of archery.
More history from SDA club members:
- By Jim Baker