When 10-year-old Madison Wevers saw The Hunger Games, the main character – Katniss Everdeen – became an instant hero. After all, Katniss is an archer.
Madison was already taking archery lessons, but when she saw Katniss on the screen, she was an immediate fan.
“I liked the movie because she had a bow and arrow, too,” said the Grade 5 Keating Elementary student. “And she was good at shooting.”
Interest in archery from kids like Madison has exploded in the last year. Registration at Saanich Commonwealth Place, the only indoor facility in Greater Victoria offering lessons – in partnership with local club the Victoria Bowmen – is already oversubscribed, with a waiting list of about 30 names.
The Hunger Games has a lot to do with that sudden popularity.
The movie is the most high-profile cultural event in recent years to feature archery, along with the television show Revolution and animated movie Brave. All three feature teenage girls, or young women, who are archers as principal characters.
Coach Helena Myllyniemi, a 30-year-plus member of the Victoria Bowmen club, said she has never seen such interest.
“Especially the girls – they are all so excited about The Hunger Games movie,” said Myllyniemi, who admits she hasn’t seen the movie, put off by the violence. “We have more girls now than ever before since the movie, which is very nice.”