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Unleash your inner Hawkeye with fun archery-based team game, arrow tag

Unleash your inner Hawkeye with fun archery-based team game, arrow tag

A poufy giant marshmallow at the end of a long stick hardly seems like a threatening weapon. But add some flights and connect it to a bow, then we have a different ball game, or rather archery game.

The marshmallowy-tipped shafts are actually 75cm carbon arrows with a foam head. "It's all completely safe and doesn't hurt ... much" says Keith Tamkei, founder and owner of Hawkeye Arrow Tag.

Never heard of arrow tag? Not many people in SA have. It is an archery-based team game combining elements of dodgeball and a bit of paintball developed in 2011 in the US and growing globally. It is also a lot of fun.

"I saw a Youtube video of the game a couple of years ago and it looked like such a great activity to do with friends. But on investigating further, few local suppliers turned up. And none close to where I stayed," Tamkei added.

"I thought it was crazy that outdoor and sport-loving South Africans hadn't caught on to this. So I imported a kit and started this company."

People walk into our field grumpy and walk out ecstatic and laughing - and out of breath
Keith Tamkei, founder and owner of Hawkeye Arrow Tag

Since their launch in March this year, interest has steadily grown. "The best experience is to see people rewarded by tagging their target, usually a friend, or sometimes their colleague, or boss, with an arrow. People walk into our field grumpy and walk out ecstatic and laughing - and out of breath."

The mechanics of bow and arrow are intuitive to most people, some need a little more coaching, of course. But added to the adrenaline of facing off with similarly armed opponents, it makes for an exciting and surprisingly aerobic activity.

According to Tamkei, the biggest challenge right now is the public not knowing about arrow tag. Hence a lot of resources being poured into awareness and exhibitions at events like Comic Con Africa and the rAge Expo.

"We have just had positive feedback from kids and adults who find their inner kid. Arrow tag really is a chance for people to draw out their own Katniss Everdeen, Robin Hood and, of course, Marvel's Hawkeye." 

• Hawkeye Arrow Tag is mobile in Gauteng; they'll be at Comic Con Africa and rAge. Visit hawkeyearrowtag.com for more information.