WEIRTON - Archery enthusiasts in the area have a new business to visit for all their equipment, hunting and shooting needs.
Alexander Archery recently opened at 3105 Main St., providing a selection of bows, hunting gear and other equipment and even an indoor archery range for those looking for some practice.
Owner Rob Alexander explained the business was the culmination of a life-long dream.
ALEXANDER ARCHERY OPEN — Alexander Archery owner Rob Alexander and Amanda Mesler stand outside the recently opened business, located at 3105 Main St. in Weirton. — Craig Howell
"Me and my brother had always wanted to open an archery shop," he said.
Alexander said he grew up watching archery and hunting programs on television and has had a love for the sport since his childhood.
Alexander Archery stocks a variety of bows, arrows, clothes, quivers, releases, sights, tree stands and other equipment and accessories. They feature bows from Matthews, Mission, Elite and Bear. But they're more than just a place to purchase archery equipment.
"We've got an actual pro shop," Alexander said. "We can work on them, restring them."
He explained they can customize a bow and accessories based on the desires of the customer, personalizing items from the type of equipment included to the color.
The upstairs of the building features an indoor archery range where customers can test different models, learn the functions of each piece of equipment and practice their archery.
The range also will be available for classes, indoor tournaments, 3-D shoots and even birthday parties.
In January, when little bow hunting is taking place, Alexander said he plans on introducing a "Techno Hunt" program, where participants will shoot at a screen and be scored.
"It's like a virtual reality hunt," Alexander explained.
Plans also include opportunities to work with archery professionals and manufacturer representatives.
During Alexander Archery's grand opening on Aug. 24, Wiley Greer, a sales representative dealing with Elite bows, was on hand, demonstrating some of the equipment and assisting customers with their technique.
Greer explained much has changed in archery in the last 20 years, with manufacturers producing bows capable of being used by people of all ages.
"Now the whole family can go outside and shoot the same bow," Greer said.
These days, Greer said, manufacturers focus on specialized accessories in order to assist with the development of form and skill.
Alexander expressed his appreciation to everyone who has helped to get the archery shop open, including area developer and businessman Mike Chek who helped to locate the space.
"Mike Chek was instrumental in getting this archery shop up and running," he said. "He's been working with us since day one."
Also a major help, he said, has been his girlfriend, Amanda Mesler, whom he credits with setting up all the legal work in establishing the business along with operating the shop.
They also are working on a kitchen area to serve food, with Alexander's mom, Pam, in charge.
She explained one of the planned menu items is the Giovanni sandwich. They also have plans to place televisions in the kitchen area to allow viewing of children's programming.
"We really want it family oriented," she said.
Alexander Archery can be contacted at (304) 748-8029. They also can be found on Facebook.
(Howell can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org, and followed via Twitter @CHowellWDT.)