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2011 Michigan Youth Bowfishing Championship Results

June 11, 2011 Year # 1

Brian Gilson (616) 240-1196

Great Cause

• Youth event is 100% FREE!!!

Michigan’s first youth bowfishing event is in the books. On Saturday, June 11, twenty four children from across the state converged at Echo Point boat ramp on Lake Allegan for a day of bowfishing, archery, and games.

• Michigan's first annual youth bowfishing tournament • 24 children participated at inaugural event

Hosted by the Bowfishing Association of Michigan, the intent was to introduce our next generation to the great sport of bowfishing. The event was 100% free and all prizes/supplies were provided by donors. Highlights: Great Cause


The Format


Adverse Conditions


Final Standings 3 Photo Gallery


New Tradition


committee and the Allegan Conservation District have been successfully hosting their annual “Lake Allegan Carp Derby” for several years. They also hold their event on the DNR's free fishing weekend. The idea was to join forces to help reduce the overabundant carp population on the lake.

Carp are not native to America, but they have managed to establish a firm foot-hold throughout the continental U.S. and At the beginning of the they range from central year, the B.A.M. crew Canada to central Mexico. decided to host their youth This species is one of the shoot on Lake Allegan for a most widely distributed few reasons. The fish species in North Kalamazoo total maximum America, and also one of the most detrimental. daily load implementation

The Format

The event was developed for kids from the ground up. The format is very similar to other carp shoots with one major exception: adults are not allowed to shoot. The kids love the idea that Dad can’t beat them to the fish! Typically, kids haven’t developed an eye for spotting fish in the water, so they frequently get beat to the punch by other shooters in the boat. Since adults can’t shoot, it gives the kids some extra shot opportunities that

they may not normally get. All children 17 and under were welcome to participate. Trophies were awarded to the top three places for each division. There were three divisions for both boys and girls as well as an overall winner for each. The top spots were awarded to the heaviest three fish for each division. Additional prizes were also handed out for big fish, small fish, and highest 3D score.

Carp are bottom feeders and their feeding habits are very destructive to the waters that they inhabit. They “root” down into the bottom much like pigs do when they are looking for food. This activity stirs up sediment and uproots aquatic plants. The sediment gets suspendedtherefore creating muddy water that light cannot penetrate. The lack of sunlight kills plants that are necessary for underwater life. Carp have also been proven to eat the eggs of more popular game fish. Bowfishing plays an important role since we can selectively harvest these destructive fish while leaving game fish unharmed.

There were extra boats, bows, and captains available to take out any kid that wanted to try bowfishing. There was also a 3D archery range where kids could shoot a round of 10 shots for a chance to win a trophy. Since this is a bowfishing tournament, if a child shoots a fish, he/she would beat the target shooters.

B.A.M. Youth Shoot

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Adverse Conditions Didn't Hamper the Fun!

“I can't wait to spear some fish! Eian Kowalewski (almost 4 years old)

Lake Allegan is somewhat unique since the Kalamazoo River flows directly through it. West Michigan received a lot of rain several days prior to the tournament and the rainfall washed dirty sediment into the river and lake. The water was very muddy which made it difficult for the kids to see fish. To make matters worse, a strong cold front moved into the area just in time for the shoot. The carp weren’t feeding in the shallows like they normally would be. At 9:00am, the kids eagerly headed off to the water. Most were armed with bows, but some of them were toting spears. Michigan’s spearing

regulations and bowfishing regulations are shared. Bows and arrows have a distinct advantage over spears, but some of the youngsters cannot pull enough poundage to penetrate a fish with a bow. Therefore, spearing is acceptable for the youth shoot.

Despite the lack of fish, the day flew by. Everybody stayed busy and we all had plenty to eat.

The biggest fish of the day was shot by Jed Luurtsema with a 3.4 pounder and the smallest fish of the day was taken by Julie Miller with a great shot on a 1.2 lb carp. The carp in Lake Allegan are typically not very big, but they are usually plentiful.

Most teams weighed-in early, but a few die-hards stuck it out until the 3:00pm deadline. At the end of the day, only two kids returned with a 3 fish stringer. Both young men shot their fish wading in the shallows, so they had to work for their titles.

The morning began with a drizzly rain and cool temperatures, As the day progressed, it gradually warmed up into the low 70's, but the fish never cooperated. Occasionally, teams would come back to the landing for some food and games. B.A.M. member Rick Russell grilled hotdogs for the hungry

Our first overall winners

crew. Munchies and drinks were also provided free of charge. The 3D range was the busiest activity of the day. B.A.M. member Rob Miller setup the range and he helped every kid shoot their 10 shot round. After the child shot his/her round, the range was available for open shooting. All of the kids had fun slinging arrows at the lifelike animals. Aside from the archery, there was also an airsoft gun range, ladder ball, lawn jarts, and washers to keep the kids busy.

are Tanner Edewaard with 8.2 lbs and Julie Miller with 1.2 lbs.

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B.A.M. Youth Shoot Final Standings Name

3D Score

(Perfect: 100)

Fish Weight

Girls 10 and Under 1- Keziah Metz (5)


2- Karley Kowalewski (5)


3- Madiline VanWagner (7)


Girls 11-13 1- Brianna Lenhart (13)


2- Brittany Lenhart (13)


Girls 14-17 1- Julie Miller (15)

70 (1X)

2- Marie McKinnon (15)

71 ***

3- Heather Stueken (15)


1.2 lbs *

Boys 10 and Under 1- Edward Wickham (10)

53 (1X)

2- Tanner Wolters (6)


3- Riley Stout (8)


4- Micah Metz (10)


5- Carter Schuring (7)


6- Riley Scofield (7)


7- Haiden Kowalewski (9)


8- Eian Kowalewski (3)


9- Hunter Zeadyh (5)


10- Justin VanWagner (3)


1.8 lbs

Boys 11-13 1- Tanner Edewaard (13)


2.8 + 2.8 + 2.6 = 8.2 lbs

2- Jed Luurtsema (13)


3.4** + 2.2 + 1.8 = 7.4 lbs

3- Christopher Russell (13)

70 (1X)

4- Kurt Stueken (13)

62 (1X)

5- Elijah Metz (11)

45 (1X)

6- Derek Hicks (13)


*= Small Fish **= Big Fish ***= Highest 3D Score

3.2 + 1.8 = 5.0 lbs 1.8 lbs

B.A.M. Youth Shoot

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“When is the next kids shoot?” Riley Stout (8 years old)

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B.A.M. Youth Shoot I think we started a new tradition... We had rain, muddy water, a lack of fish, and a cold front. Despite the hardships, everybody had a lot of fun, and it was a huge success. This will be an annual event and we're all looking forward to next year.

Bowfishing Association of Michigan Brian Gilson E-MAIL:

We’re on the Web! See us at:

This event couldn't have happened without a lot of help. Special thanks to B.A.M. members Rick Russell, Rob Miller, Dave Gilson, and John Stout for their help at the

shoot. Also, thanks to the B.A.A., Randy at the Youth Bowfishing Assoc., and the wonderful door prize donors below. Download the pictures and stay updated on our new Facebook page! Search for Michigan Youth Bowfishing and click “Like.”. Also, keep an eye on for information on next year’s event.

About Our Organization… The Bowfishing Association of Michigan is dedicated to promoting, educating, and protecting the sport of bowfishing. An affiliate of Michigan United Conservation Clubs, B.A.M. and MUCC work together to preserve our rights.

Special Thanks To Our Generous Donors:

2011 Mi Youth Bowfishing Championship  

Here's the follow up report for the tournament.

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