In this fast-paced world, we so often drive to the nearest big box store to get the stuff that fulfills our needs. It might be lumber at a warehouse, or groceries at the “members only” giant shopping establishment. All the time, we pass by local gems, filled with people just like you and me, people with a desire to make a living doing what they love.
One such “gem” is a traditional archery store called The Footed Shaft
in Rochester, MN. This modest store, with a front porch reminiscent of a southern cabin, is owned by Terry Banitt. Terry is warm and inviting, with a grin that rarely leaves his face, whether he’s cutting arrows in his shop, or handing you one of the hundreds of traditional bows adorning his shop. The Footed Shaft
is covered from floor to ceiling with bows, arrows, fletching and just about any archery accessory you can imagine (and many you didn’t even know you needed!).
Terry is the willing subject of Serve #29. I wanted to do this “Serve” for two reasons: because I love the sport of traditional archery and the people who are a part of it; and to understand what draws a person to operate a small shop in the hills of Rural Minnesota.
When I asked Terry why he keeps a store like The Footed Shaft
open he said, “People need a place to get traditional archery supplies, and maybe more important, they want a place to belong. In here, they know they can talk hunting and swap archery stories.”
I also asked him why he serves people in his way. He said he wants to be a place for people to slow down in this high-tech, mobile world and enjoy a simple, ancient hobby, and to be still, breath and escape for a while.
So, take some advice from Terry: slow down and fling a few arrows with a bow made of wood. Or maybe ride a bike on a back road, or go for a hike where the trees are close. Whatever it is, set the phone down, and go share that adventure with someone you care about.