When Robin Hood split his opponent’s arrow down the middle, you can bet he hadn’t bought his equipment just anywhere.
In fact, if Sherwood Forest were in the Southwest Washington, odds are the fabled hero would pick up his gear at Side Hill Archery in Kalama.
“We’ve had people in from north of Seattle down to Oregon City,” said owner Bill Price. “Customer service here is a big deal. Anybody can sell a product; it’s the people that make the difference.”
His business began five years ago offering handcrafted bow strings at a small Kelso shop. It quickly turned into a major Northwest string supplier, so with demand soaring and space getting tighter, Price saw a need to expand.
Side Hill opened on First Avenue in Kalama in February as anticipation for the shop was mounting in the community. Though he’d focused on strings before, he decided to start offering everything an archer may need.
“If you had told me how many bows we’d sell that first month (more than 30), I’d tell you you were crazy,” Price said. “It’s been awesome. I couldn’t have asked for a better reception.”
Price, 53, said he’s been around archery all his life, like his sons and wife, who also work at Side Hill.
Though he sells all the equipment and add-ons a hunter might need, Price said he gets more recreational archery shooters than hunters.
“A lot of our customers just want to shoot,” he said. “Archery is what you make it.”
On the other side of a wall covered in compound bows, there is a target range for anyone who wants to let an arrow or two fly — for free.
Side Hill provides the space for shooters to try new bows and test their own equipment just a few steps away from a full repair shop.
More than a few bows were hanging on the wall behind the counter Friday afternoon, testament to the early popularity of the repair service.
And, of course, among the camo outfits, scopes and arrows scattered throughout the shop, there are the bows meant for smaller arms.
“Archery fits such a wide range of kids, maybe those who don’t fit (other sports),” Price said.
Side Hill Archery is at 157 North First Ave. in Kalama. The store is open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. They can be reached at 360-560-1694 or at sidehillarchery.com.
Classics in Kelso is no more. Long live Classics & Oddities in Longview.
The new shop for everything you can’t find anywhere else held its grand opening Saturday at its new location, 1235 Commerce Ave.
Classics & Oddities is an emporium of collectibles, video games, records and other rare finds.
Corey Strite started Classics in late 2009. The shop is now run by husband and wife combo Corey and Shanae Strite.
The store can be reached at 360-747-2393 or on Facebook.