Dee’s Archery empowers future female archers in the Lakeville area

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LAKEVILLE – Raise your bow, shoot, anchor, hold, aim and release.

At Dee’s Archery, it’s all about proper form.

Owner Dee Sacchetti has taught aspiring archers all around the south coast with his mobile event business as well as at his shooting range in Lakeville.

“My goal is to rejuvenate them,” Sacchetti said. “I shape them. Instead of competition, we work on form and we work on building a love of the sport.”

Sacchetti says she mainly works with young girls and women.

“It empowers women,” she said. “There’s just something about it. It’s mind and body. It’s a combination of both. But more than anything, it’s mental toughness, it’s mindfulness.”

Dee’s Archery offers two programs for women: Shoot Like a Girl on Tuesdays and Lady’s Night on Thursdays. There is also a program for young beginners.

Sacchetti says she teaches a majority of kids who struggle to participate in team sports. “I get a lot of these kids who just don’t fit in or just don’t feel like they’re part of a team,” she said.

“When they do archery, they compete more with themselves.”

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Sacchetti says she loves when students who lack self-confidence slowly start to come out of their shells after a few lessons.

“You can see it in them, and I feel that energy, I get that energy from them,” Sacchetti added. “That’s what fills my cup, knowing that I made someone more confident and better about themselves.

“It never gets old.”

The 20-year-old Middleborough resident says she worked at Reedy’s Archery on Wood Street, teaching students and running the summer programme.

“I soon realized there was a kind of need for travel archery and not many people were doing it,” she said.

Reedy’s owner Chris Reed, a good friend, inspired Sacchetti to start his own business. In 2016, that’s exactly what she did.

“My motto is that archery is for everyone,” Sacchetti said, adding that she has worked with all demographics, including those with low vision, special needs and an older generation. old.

During the pandemic, Sacchetti said her mobile business was in high demand because it was outdoors and a new type of business. Sacchetti said she got to a point where she struggled to keep up with all the schedules.

“We constantly have to be creative and reinvent our business,” Sacchetti said.

From a family of hunters

Born in North Providence, Rhode Island, Sacchetti’s father was a bow hunter and came from a family of hunters. “I used to hang out at a little archery shop with my dad,” she said. “I had my first bow when I was probably around 10.”

As a trained huntress herself, Sacchetti tries to be informative against the negative stigma surrounding hunting animals in the wild.

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“People have this vision of a bloodthirsty hunter. That’s not what it is,” she said. “When I shot my first deer, I cried. I felt proud, but I also felt remorse.”

Sacchetti says hunting animals helps reduce overpopulation of wildlife that can ultimately lead to crop depletion.

“It also keeps the herd population healthy,” Sacchetti added. “And then you have to take responsibility for taking the life of that animal and you have to harvest it.

“Her life was not wasted, she helped feed my daughter.”

As a single mother, Sacchetti bought her daughter, Olivia, her first bow when she was 5 years old.

“Archery is very rewarding and a great time,” said 18-year-old Olivia Sacchetti. “I’m an independent person, so I like that it’s an independent sport. There’s no outside stress. It’s kind of on me, I can relax and it’s time for me to calm down.

She and her mother run the business together.

“I am very proud of her. I think it’s great what she has done,” added Olivia Sacchetti.

An increase in female archers

Dee Sacchetti says that over the past 13 years she has seen a significant increase in the number of female hunters, especially among female bowhunters.

According to a USAToday article in 2013, the popularity of the “Hunger Games” franchise led to increased interest in archery, thanks to Jennifer Lawrence’s portrayal of the story’s heroine, Katniss Everdeen and her mastery of the bow and arrows.

“It changed our sport,” USA Archery CEO Denise Parker said in an interview. Participation in archery in the United States skyrocketed nearly 26% between 2012 and 2015.

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Another reason for young girls interested in learning archery came after the release of the Disney movie “Brave.”

As of October 2021, there were approximately 30.4 million archers nationwide, according to a new study commissioned by the Archery Trade Association, with a 32% increase in competitive female archers over the past two years.

“These films have definitely inspired more girls and women to get involved in sports,” Sacchetti said. “When I was a kid, there were hardly any.”

Track demand

During the off-season of the mobile business, several people approached Sacchetti to continue the lessons. In 2020, she opened a range of five targets in Lakeville on Bedford Street.

“I hope to expand and have a bigger space soon,” she said. “I feel like we’re still in the ‘teen years’ of the business. It’s still growing and changing.”

Lady’s Night has become a popular Thursday night treat attracting up to 12 women.

“It clears your mind,” said Kelly Coleman of Middleborough. She says she thinks she’s attended 10-12 times, and in November 2021 she bought her first bow.

“I like it, it’s fun,” added Kay Stokoe. “I am addicted.”

Stokoe said she used to do kickboxing, but due to arthritis she needed to find something else. “I was looking for something to do with women and had a blast,” she said.

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“The nose it does, it’s kind of soothing actually,” Plymouth’s Jody Quinn said. Quinn works with men all day at a construction company, so she says it’s great to be around strong women on Thursday nights.

“It’s a different vibe,” added Quinn, who also recently purchased her own bow. “And Dee is amazing. She knows what she’s doing.”

Sacchetti offers ladies a chance to shoot their arrows at personal goals or stressors written on a piece of paper and pinned to the target.

“I tell them to focus on that negative note there,” she said. “Remove that arrow, breathe in, exhale, and let go.”

Sacchetti says archery is about empowerment. She is happy to have the chance to inspire people with her lessons. “Anything I can do to help someone find some happiness,” she said.

“That’s what I take away from what I do.”

Standard-Times editor Seth Chitwood can be reached at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter: @ChitwoodReports. Support local journalism by purchasing a digital or print subscription to The Standard-Times today.

Earnest A. Martinez