History / About

Club History

Established in 1953

The Wapello Chiefs Bowmen were formed in 1953, making it one of the oldest clubs in Iowa.  In April of 1960, the club purchased 80 acres of land south of Ottumwa.  By September of that year, 48 targets were laid out.  In May of 1961, the club had its first invitational shoot, which consisted of 24 shooters.

In 1962 the club began shooting at the Ottumwa Coliseum during the winter months (where Bridgeview Center is today).  The club held its first district shoot that year, which brought in 48 shooters.  A state tournament was also held, which had 160 shooters.  

In May of 1964, a fire burned 20 to 30 acres of the course, all of which has been restored.

In April of 2003, another fire destroyed timber as well as the club barn and its contents.  A new barn was built in August of 2003.

The Iowa ASA (Archery Shooters Association) Federation was established in 2018.  In May of 2019 the Wapello Chiefs Bowmen hosted the first ever ASA shoot in Iowa.  The club continues to host an ASA shoot every year.  To learn more about the Iowa ASA Federation and how it was formed click the link below:

About our club

The Wapello Chiefs Bowmen are an archery club located in southeast Iowa.  The club is currently located on an eighty acre property located south of Ottumwa, Iowa.  

The club hosts 3D archery shoots during the summer months.  The shoots are open for all public to attend.  Children are encouraged to come.  The 3D shoots consist of four courses of ten targets, for a total of forty targets.  3D shoots cost twelve dollars ($12.00) for the general public and ten dollars ($10.00) for club members.  One course of ten targets is left up throughout the summer for members to shoot on their own time.

Club members have access to the club grounds at any time.  Members are allowed to bow hunt upon the property.  Tree stands can be placed on the property during hunting season.  Members can also camp upon the property.    Fire pits are located upon the property to provide primitive only camping locations.

Member only events take place during the year.  These events include a polar bear shoot, broadhead shoot, and an awards banquet in the spring.  Awards are given out at the banquet for game taken during the previous hunting season, as well as the two members only shoots.  The banquet has a guest speaker every year as well as many door prizes.

The cost of joining the club is $45.  This fee is for an individual or a family.  Our membership goes from June to June.  If you join earlier in the year, the dues are pro-rated until June.  You can join at Steve’s Archery in Ottumwa (641-799-2264), at any one of our shoots, or email us. 

The Wapello Chiefs Bowmen are a 100% club.  This means that all members of the Wapello Chiefs Bowmen are also members of the IBA (Iowa Bowhunters Association).  When you join Wapello Chiefs, you are automatically a member of the IBA.  To learn more about the IBA click the link below: