Most of my readers already know that Steve Viau is my Dad and makes quivers out of PVC pipes and birch bark. What you probably don’t know is how GOOD he’s actually become doing it and how popular he is because of it.
His “BirchBark Rovers” have acquired quite a fan base in our local archery communities and are really picking up steam thanks to Social Media. So much so I get direct messages on a weekly basis asking me about my father and his craft. This happens often in the real world as well. Two weeks ago was the Great Lakes Longbow Invitational in Hastings, Michigan – The Michigan Longbow Association’s flagship event. I now serve as a council member for the MLA and appear in their StickTalk publication often. I enjoyed conversation after conversation in my obnoxious yellow “STAFF” shirt throughout the weekend, but it was my Dad who everyone seemed to be looking for. I had several members wander into camp asking me if I knew “Ste-phan Vi-you” (it’s actually pronounced “view”) or “the guy who makes those cool quivers”.
He received compliment after compliment on his creations and it was a trip to watch it happen. In fact, one of my favorite GLLI moments was our silent raffle on Sunday. Members and vendors alike contribute items, which are set on a table next to a brown bag. You can then buy raffle tickets and place them in the bag pertaining to the item you would like to take home. I encouraged Dad to donate one of his quivers so we could gauge its interest based on the amount of tickets in the bag by raffle start. Come Sunday, I could tell that Dad was nervous. I don’t even think he looked in his bag.
Fortunately, I did on Saturday afternoon and was delighted to find his bag was already completely full of tickets. I even made it a point to walk back to camp and tell Mom how many people wanted it, while Dad was shooting. He perked up when he found out. In fact, I haven’t seen him that proud in some time.
And I was proud of him too.
This was just an idea after all. Something the two of us concocted over the phone while discussing how someone needed to make a quiver to accommodate various small game points and wide-winged broadheads. We both made our own solutions to the problem. Mine worked, but didn’t look very good. Dad’s was exceptional – right out of the gates – and just kept improving.
Before he started making quivers, Dad was a tailor and owned a clothing store. He took pride in carrying quality American made brands and could fix anything with a needle in thread – back when clothes weren’t so disposable. There were benefits to being a tailor’s son. I never went unclothed and I never had holes in anything. Things aren’t much different now. I am the son of a master quiver maker and yes there are benefits to being such. He’s made me quite a few already and I cherish every one of them, but my absolute favorite is a special hunting quiver he fashioned out of 3″ PVC and some camouflage material a mutual friend donated.
He was able to craft three quivers out of said materials. He kept one, fellow MLA member Chris Gault has the second, and he gifted me the third. No two of Dad’s quivers are alike so each of these is the only one of its kind, CRAMMED with MOJO, and ready to hit the woods come September.
I am a big fan of mojo (luck, good vibrations, what have you) and surround myself in it as much as possible when I enter the deer woods. It is a term that is thrown around often and probably quite cliche at this point, but I don’t care. I dig it. The more mojo the better! Only, I believe that true mojo can only be acquired by something that is either made by human hands for someone else, or is passed down from one person or another.
This quiver fits the bill and is one of my primary mojo pieces for this season. The other being a “Trophy Hunter” longbow made by John Schulz that was gifted to me by my good friend Steve Angell from Simply Traditional. I’ll be taking both to visit Steve come September 17th and am hoping they will land me a buck or doe.
I can’t wait!
Do you believe in “mojo”. Do you have any items that have it in abundance and are sacred to you? I want to hear about them! Please comment below.