I am a novice archer (shooting less than a year in the SCA) and an MIT. I really enjoy the challenge of archery and just being able to talk shop with such a friendly and diverse group of people. Archery is very new to my shire (also less than a year), and we have been lucky to have been blessed with an over abundance of participants. Having been in the SCA long enough, I know that the participation in local activities can ebb and flow drastically, and that has me thinking a lot about how to keep interest strong and encourage everyone to keep improving.
While watching your score slowly improve over time is its own reward, some times it is nice to actually win something. I recently (narrowly) won a novice prize at a tourney recently, so I know it is nice to feel special for a day. The thing about most tourneys is that they are about crowning the best of the best for the day/event. Most of us won't get to that level for many years, if ever. Sure there are AoA and GoA awards along the way, but sometimes it is nice to just be special for a day and you are only a novice for a short time so you may never get a chance to win one of those.
What I would like to see is more competitions that award champions within each of a set of ranks (Novice, Bowman, etc...). That way you don't take away from the glory and skill of the best archers, but still give those with out a chance to be overall champion a chance to feel like a champion for that day. The ranks can be based off of RR, IKAC, or what ever is appropriate.
Pros, cons, thoughts, and/or opinions?