Each day, sports persons enter a brick façade on 39th Avenue with bow cases and leather quivers slung over their shoulders. Queens Archery was founded in 1967 and remains a clubhouse for the city's archers, offering a practice range, opportunity for organized competition, and a pro shop that stocks all manner of gear for the sport with a small but passionate following. In recent years, interest in the age-old discipline has surged—in part due to the popularity of the bow-and-arrow-wielding characters in The Hunger Games series—bringing an influx of beginners eager to learn the sport to Queens Archery. In addition to the resident eagle-eyed veterans, the facility is home to a coterie of young archers who take part in the Junior Olympic Archery Development program. The JOAD program is administered by Columbia University archery coach Al Lizzio and certified teacher Erin Vecino, who help youths cultivate the sharp eye and steady pull necessary to be competitive-level archers.
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