Over 200 Aboriginal teens have gathered from across Ontario to compete in the first Ontario Aboriginal Summer Games.

The competition, taking place between July 19 and 21, has gathered youth between the ages of 13 and 18 to Six Nations, near Hamilton.

They are competing in sports like archery, rifle shooting, swimming, kayaking, and other athletics.

This event will select the most talented teens to compete in the NAIG (North American Indigenous Games) which will be held in Toronto in 2017.

The athletes who spoke with the CBC said they were happy and excited to be there.

"The furthest one made a 28-hour-drive to be here. It's Incredible," said Clay Melnike, the Manager of Planning and Regional Development at the Aboriginal Sport & Wellness Council of Ontario.

"A lot of these remote communities never get a chance to get out. So they came from the very far north, a community of 200, and this is a whole new experience for them."

The Ontario Aboriginal Summer Games isn't just a competition; the first two days focus on instruction.

So many of the teens registered for sports where they hope to improve -- not necessarily the ones they are best at.

Though some of them, like 17-year-old archer Kiauna Hendrick-Nicholas from Chippewa of the Thames First Nation, are already selected NAIG competitors. Hendrick-Nicholas has competed in the NAIG before, placing second.

"Now I'm aiming for first," she said.

Then she took aim with her bow and struck a rubber dinosaur in the flank from 40 yards.

dave.beatty@cbc.ca | @dbeatty