Familiar Faces: Retiree takes aim at fitness through archery

By: Menka Belgal, Telegraph Correspondent
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EL DORADO HILLS, CA - Tom Grube has been the president of the El Dorado Hills Bowman’s Club for five years. The Bowman’s Club is an archery club that teaches classes at the Community Services District on a monthly basis and holds tournaments and monthly club shoots. The club rents land from the CSD and has built an expansive practice area that can be seen from the road. The range has 28 fixed targets ranging from 10 to 80 yards. It is open to the public for a daily range fee of $5.

What were you doing before retirement?

I recently retired from the insurance industry where I was employed over 45 years. The most recent job for the last 10 years was handling commercial insurance claims. A good portion of my time involved litigation and I frequently attended mediations and settlement conferences for various insurance companies and law firms.

How did you get involved in archery?

My wife and I moved to El Dorado Hills from the Bay Area 10 years ago and I began looking for something to do to keep busy. Golf was too time-consuming and expensive while archery was close and affordable once you purchased the equipment. I spotted the El Dorado Hills Bowmen Archery Range and decided to check it out. Our range requires a lot of up and down hill walking that is also good exercise. I also live close enough to the range that it is only five minutes from my house.

I had shot archery as a kid in the Chicago area and while in Boy Scouts and again in college but not since that time. My good fortune was to be adopted by Harley and Sharon, both of whom showed me the ropes and also gained my interest in participating in tournaments at other local ranges.

I shoot on a regular basis with Bob Scheidegger and several others several times a week and we have friendly competition. Bob has gotten much better and now beats me on a regular basis.

Do you hunt?

I have never hunted with archery but in younger days did enjoy archery bow fishing which involves shooting carp with a bow and arrow.

I still enjoy rifle and shotgun hunting with my favorite being pheasant hunting and dove hunting a close second. Until recently I made annual trips with a group of guys to dove hunt in Mexico and on one occasion to Argentina for dove and pigeons and further south to hunt some of the strangest looking ducks and geese I have ever seen.

What improvements have you made to the club since you’ve been their president?

The club has made many improvements over the past five years thanks to the participation of the members and particularly the Range Manager Tony Dunn. We have replaced a 40-year-old structure with a new building built by the members with many of the materials and all the labor donated by the members.

What are you most proud of?

I am most proud of the growth in club membership and the improvements we have made to the range.

What hobbies do you enjoy?

My wife Judy and I enjoy traveling and took five cruises in three years and recently returned from a two-week land tour of Italy. Last year we took our three married children, spouses and six grandchildren to Hawaii to celebrate our 50th anniversary. I am pleased with the fact that all three children graduated from college and are happily married and successfully employed.

In addition to archery I am also a member of a fishing group or club known as the Jolly Hookers. With about 100 members I am one of the 12 youngest members of the group.

I also enjoy spending time with friends new and old and will do so on a regular basis as long as I remain healthy.