Around the ATA

Information for Around the ATA is provided to Trap & Field by state and provincial ATA Delegates and/or their designated representatives.

Shooters and local officials: Please inform your ATA Delegate of news about shooters and clubs in your area.

Florida

We just finished some big trapshooting tournaments at Silver Dollar and Robinson Ranch. Other clubs throughout our state were busy holding either Big 50 shoots or regular 100-bird events each week. Silver Dollar will host the following registered shoots this month: Rio Ammo Shoot, Feb. 1-3; Federal Ammo Shoot, Feb. 8-10; Beretta USA Shoot, Feb. 15-17; White Flyer Shoot, Feb. 22-24. Robinson Ranch has a full schedule of registered targets most days in February, including their annual Handicap Challenge Feb. 9-11. Other clubs shooting registered this month include Volusia Co., Flagler, Sarasota, Gulf Coast Clays, Tallahassee, South Florida, Hurlburt, Imperial Polk Co., Chuluota and Markham Park. I haven’t mentioned Gator T&SC, Amelia Trap or Indian River S&TC. Both Gator and Amelia were not active when our shoot card was printed. Indian River has canceled registered trapshooting, and I have not heard if they are resuming weekend shoots. Please contact those individual clubs to get information on registered events that may be scheduled. If you need targets in order to stay out of penalty class when registering for the state shoot, this is the month to get your target requirements in. If you need to get a complete shoot schedule, log onto www.floridatrap.com to print off a complete schedule. Programs for the major shoots at Silver Dollar and Robinson Ranch are posted on their individual websites, www.silverdollartrap.com and www.robinsonranchtrapandskeet.com.

One of our junior gold trapshooters achieved a special status, earning his AA-27-AA pin and certificate. Congratulations go out to Matthew DeBord for his outstanding trapshooting.

In closing I was notified of the passing of Jim Whaley of the Villages. Please review in Completed Careers.

Please contact me with any trapshooting items of interest at 321-427-6553 or larryg04@att.net.

Larry Grenevicki

ATA Delegate

Georgia

We Georgia trapshooters have always had close ties with our Alabama brethren, not just because of our close proximity, but because of shared heritages and interests. So it was with great sadness that I heard of the passing of Alabama Delegate Fred Jensen this past month. Fred was a great help to me as a new Delegate, lending the benefit of his many years of ATA involvement. Over the course of 31 years, Fred shot more than 175,000 registered targets and served as ATA Southern Zone secretary-treasurer as well as Alabama Delegate. It just won’t be the same going over to Bill Parson’s and not seeing Fred sitting on your left classifying everybody.

It is a busy time of year for behind-the-scenes activity. I would like to thank all the usual suspects preparing for the upcoming 2019 state shoot. It is a common misconception that successful state shoots just happen. We actually start preparations almost a year ahead. In addition to GATA officers, key contributors include Betsy Reed, Ginger Golden, Boone Butler, Bill Clay, Diane Bolling and Dave Hollingsworth.

I’ll see you on good winter days for some practice.

Rich Griffith

ATA Delegate

Kentucky

There have not been very many or any Kentuckians shooting in major competitions this month, so I am going to catch up on reporting on some major distinctions earned by Kentucky trapshooters at the 2018 Grand and since that I am aware of.

I believe it is only fitting to first mention Robert Dyer. Not only did he win 11 trophies at this year’s Grand American, but he is also captain of the veteran All-American team and led the No. 2 member by nearly 1,000 points. I also recently noticed that he shot at and broke his 100,000th handicap target at the Grand American or shortly thereafter. I would say Robert pretty much had what I would call a dream season. I also noticed that our Lady II All-American, Martha Humphrey, recently shot at and broke her 75,000th doubles target. Two of Kentucky’s outstanding young trapshooters got their 27-yard pins at this year’s Grand American: Tristen Miles and Hannah Simpson. Henry Winn achieved his AA-27-AA pin along with fellow Kentuckians Nick Kingrey and Doug Cox Steve Everly shot at and broke his 50,000th handicap target recently. As I reported last month, there were many Kentucky trapshooters who distinguished themselves at the Dixie Grand this fall, but we are thrilled to see the Trap & Field staff chose to put a photo of Drew Wyatt, the junior singles champion, on the cover of the December issue. Way to go, Drew.

Well, I know I have missed some very deserving trapshooters from Kentucky in these remarks, and I apologize. Just let me know, and I will include in next month’s edition. Right now there is not a lot of trapshooting going on except in leagues. However, the Spring Grand in Tucson is right around the corner, and I am planning on attending. Anyone who can and is so inclined, I invite to join me there.

This is hoping everyone had a healthy and joyous Christmas holiday, and let’s make 2019 a very happy new year. Please let me know of any news you wish to share with fellow Kentucky trapshooters at vernonray@twc.com or at 270-227-2262.

Vernon Anderson

KTL Board member

Mississippi

Although we are still in the winter months, better weather and spring are just around the corner. It is now time to unlimber your trap guns and give them a spring cleaning in preparation for the better shooting weather to come. Here in Mississippi, we have a gourmet menu of events just waiting for your trapshooting prowess.

We’ll kick off with the Catfish Trapshoot (May 4-5) at Capitol GC in Jackson, which features 600 targets. Capitol will host the Mississippi State Trapshoot (May 23-26) with two preliminary days and two championship days for a total of 1,000 targets. Then in July, Capitol offers its flagship trapshoot, the Rebel (July 13-14) for another 600 targets. Down on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, our trap brethren will be one of four sites of the ATA Southern Zone Shoot at Coast R&PC (July 16-21). These shoots are just the highlights for our Mississippi trappers and our neighboring trapshooters across the South. Won’t you join us?

Both Capitol and Coast continue to offer weekly Big 50s as well as monthly shoots throughout the year. To say the least, Mississippi offers a steady diet of targets for even the most ardent trapshooter. It is up to all of us to take advantage of this impressive array of registered trapshooting events. All our Mississippi trappers and our out-of-state friends are welcome. We hope to see you on Mississippi’s traplines this spring and summer.

We were all saddened by the loss of our good friend and fellow trapper Fred Jensen, next door to us in Alabama. Fred was serving as Alabama Delegate when he passed away in late November. He made his mark on not only Alabama trapshooting, but also throughout the entire trapshooting community. He will be missed.

Happy trappin’!

Jerry Tharp

ATA Delegate

North Carolina

It feels funny saying Happy Valentine’s Day while I’m shopping on Amazon for Christmas gifts! Writing a meaningful article two months in advance gives me a new measure of respect for the folks who write for a living!

Since the great weather prognosticator Punxsutawney Phil (the nefarious rodent who, in theory, is a meteorologist with a brain the size of a chestnut) has not made his annual appearance in Pennsylvania. So we are clueless as to the weather coming up this February. By extension of that thought, we don’t know if we are shooting this month or shoveling snow. Hopefully shooting!

The Spring Grand in Tucson for those of you who travel west and the Southern Grand for the Florida-bound are the best bets for a big shoot with warm weather. Here in North Carolina we will be gearing up for our Hall of Fame Shoot at the Bostic homegrounds this April. For any of you who missed the Dixie Grand held this past fall, now would be a great time to visit our homegrounds. The Hall of Fame Shoot is not crazy crowded like the Dixie, and for the most part, weather in late April is spectacular. Please contact me if you need any information.

We now have another ATA All-American shooter here in NC! Brian Kellner was selected for the All-American sub-junior second team for 2018. Congratulations, Brian, on a job well done. Noah Gouge made captain of the junior gold first team. Great shooting, Noah!

We had a terrific increase in our junior and sub-junior shooting programs in 2018. Our coaches and parents have been awesome. These young shooters are the future of our great sport, and I challenge each of you NC ATA shooters to help these programs at your club or at the shoots. I’ve met so many wonderful young shooters, and they truly benefit from the adult contact and coaching.

I’m looking forward to seeing each of you at the shoots around NC. If I can be of help regarding ATA business or questions, you can e-mail me at bob.schultz964@gmail.com.

Bob Schultz

ATA Delegate

South Carolina

I’m writing this report on Christmas Eve, and trapshooting in South Carolina has been pretty quiet. Our normal temperate weather has been wet, wet and wet. Spartanburg, Belton and Greenville have canceled shoots. As Wes Basham from Belton said, “Don’t think it will be much fun shooting in the rain at 40º and 20-mph winds.”

Most of you have heard of the death of Fred Jensen, the Alabama Delegate. Some of us South Carolina shooters had closer connections with Fred. He was part of our place to stay during the Grand. He and Larry Sexton rented the entire Oxbow Inn in Pinkneyville, IL. He was my ride back to the inn on the night of the big meeting. Fred was full-bore trapshooting. He will be missed.

I hope Santa was good to you, that you have a great New Year, and that you raise your averages in all three events. Make room for more trophies.

Jim Faber

ATA Delegate

Tennessee

Well, if you are tired of the winter weather, why not consider Arizona for a few days? The 43rd annual Spring Grand American starts Feb. 13-17 with Preliminary Week, followed by Spring Grand Week Feb. 18-24, hosted by Tucson T&SC.

Congratulations to the following Tennessee shooters for earning their AA-27-AA pins during the 2018 target year: Caleb Clayton, Hayden Jacobs and Hunter Morton. Caleb not only earned his AA-27-AA but his AAA-27-AAA pin as well.

It is not too early to start making plans to attend the state shoot. June 11-12 will be the AIM shoot and June 13-16 the state shoot, hosted by the Tennessee CTC in Nashville.

Read the Rulebook, please.

Check out our website at Shootattn.com for more info.

For questions or further information, contact me at bcook27@bellsouth.net or 731-217-9957.

Billy Cook

ATA Delegate

Vickie and Randy Farmer went home with 500 pounds of processed meat after Randy harvested a moose in northern Alberta, Canada.

Vickie and Randy Farmer went home with 500 pounds of processed meat after Randy harvested a moose in northern Alberta, Canada.

New Mexico

I hope everyone had a great Christmas and happy New Year’s. By the time you read this, it will be February—time to starting shooting again. Alamogordo will have their annual shoot in March. I hope everyone can make it. Then in April will be the Southwestern Grand. I hope to see y’all at the shoots.

Bob Leibel

ATA Delegate

Oklahoma

Randy and Vickie Farmer had quite an experience on their Canada hunting trip. In Randy’s own words to me:

“Vickie and I went to northern Alberta on a moose hunt. I got mine on the fifth day of a six-day hunt. I passed up two small bulls before this one. This is the largest moose this outfitter ever had a client shoot. He was 52 inches wide and 26 points. We green-scored him at 175 3/8. We came home with 500 pounds of processed meat.” Vickie is one of the nine Oklahomans who made All-American status.

OTSA held a Big 50 shoot Dec. 1, and the wind was howling out of the north. Brian Northup, Dennis Patrick and Justin Cavett’s 43s were high in the singles. Tim Mount broke 43 for the high handicap score. Nathan Lemke and Dennis Patrick had 41s for second place. Cavett’s 38 was third place. In the doubles, Brian’s 46 was high, Lemke had 38, and Kevin Nanke had 33.

Shawnee held a derby shoot Dec. 2, and attendance was good in spite of cool, windy weather. Mike Grove won A doubles with 45, and Tim Mount won B with 39. Travis McBride won the A singles with 47. Cavett and Bennie Livingston’s 47s were high in B. Dean Meeks won C with 42. Tim and Bennie tied for first place in the handicap with 42s. Second was Mike Meeks with 41, and third was Grove with 36.

OTSA’s Dec. 9 derby shoot was canceled due to weather. Their Dec. 15 Big 50 shoot had good weather and high scores. Kenyon Bert won the singles with 50 straight, and Dennis Patrick’s 45 was next. First place in the handicap was Larry Gregory’s 48. Second place was a tie of 44s by Patrick and Gregory. Third place was Kevin Nanke with 41. Ron Bliss broke 49 for high in the doubles, and Mount’s 46 was next.

Shawnee’s Dec. 16 derby shoot had good weather and attendance. In the doubles, Jeff Trayer’s 44 was high. Nathan Lemke and Justin Cavett were next with 43s. In the singles, Lemke, Trayer and David Unsell all had 49s. Gary Bristol, Terry Sims and Mike Grove were next with 48s. First place in the handicap was Cavett with 46. Second place was a tie between Mike Meeks and Gordon Sebring with 45s. Third place was Grove with 44.

Joe Anglin spent half a day working on Ada’s main trap, making repairs and adjustments on the target presentation. It now throws great targets. After all his work, Joe won the Tuesday evening shoot with 46. He won the next Tuesday shoot with 46 also. Ada’s Dec. 18 Tuesday shoot was won by Lowell Leach with 47.

After an increase in the cost of targets, all clubs have been forced to raise their prices. While nobody likes to see prices increase, it is a necessary part of doing business. All clubs operate on a very close margin, even with a lot of unpaid volunteer help assisting them.

More than 200 soldiers from the Ft. Sill Army Base flew out of Will Rogers Airport to spend the holidays with their families. Let’s all wish them well and thank them for protecting our freedom when you see them.

Tim Deister

ATA Delegate

Arizona

I hope Santa was good to one and all. I am wearing my new Tucson T&S hat in lime green (I wonder how it will go with the targets at Casa Grande), and Karen is sporting a neat Beretta jacket. Apparently she was good during 2018. I know this issue comes out in February, but it’s not the New Year yet as I write, and we wish all a healthy and joyous 2019 with the word “lost” rarely uttered.

We are now in the middle of our high season. The Hall of Fame Classic is in the books, and the Spring Grand should be well under way. If you were there, I do not have to describe what it is like here; if you could not make it, don’t fret, there is still a ton of shooting to come in sunny, warm Arizona. The highlight is our state shoot March 19-24 at Tucson. The average temperature for those days is 75° with two days of rain for the entire month. What do we offer? One of the best facilities anywhere; every target in the sky; parking at each bank; professional management; friendly old guys and beautiful women in their spring shooting finery; No. 4 Competition Factor; vendors, including gunsmiths, gun sellers, clothing, accessories and ice cream; great food; and Casino Del Sol nearby. If you have been freezing and sneezing in more northerly climes, drop what you are doing. The Arizona State Shoot is the perfect cure. You will not want to leave.

While you are down here, take a run over to the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum and Old Tucson; they are just a few minutes from the club. Tombstone is not too far, and they do a great job reenacting the gunfight at the OK Corral. Stop by Bisbee for the Queen Mine tour down some 1,500 feet. There is some great eating in Bisbee, too. All will give you a real feel for Arizona’s roots.

Around the state: It’s not just Tucson in February and March. The Chain will be in full force, with Casa Grande, Double Adobe, Rio Salado, Ben Avery, Lake Havasu and Tri-State having shoots. Our local clubs are the heart and soul of Arizona shooting. Full details can be found on aztraps.com.

To end things on a real high note, the rebate that we receive from the ATA for 2018 is $12,591. That makes us No. 3 behind Pennsylvania and Ohio. Not too bad for a state tucked way down in the southwest corner of the USA, eh? (Our Canadian friends helped us get there.)

See you on the line.

John Bergman

ATA Delegate

Idaho

Good morning from Idaho! Well, it’s Christmas Eve, and it is snowing outside. Spring seems like an eternity away, and yet in 30 days I will be heading to Tucson for the Preliminary Spring Grand and the Spring Grand.

What I like about the Spring Grand is that you can usually break out the shorts and short-sleeve T-shirts and go out and smoke those garbage can-sized clay targets. Furthermore, I see a lot of friends who have survived another year and another winter. One of my favorites is Ray Stafford carrying out the garbage every morning and helping Marjorie do the housework on that monster motorhome!

If your bucket list is a little lacking for items, might I suggest that you mosey up to beautiful Idaho in May and head toward the Pocatello GC, home for the 2019 Idaho State Shoot May 24-27? The Pocatello GC tries very hard to please those who attend their shoots, and believe me, they do a great job! Club president Randy Adams and his board do a fantastic job of being gracious hosts. Plan ahead, as there is limited RV space. The club has 12 traps and a great little restaurant that features the famous Idaho potatoes. (It’s amazing how important potatoes are in Idaho; even our ISTA president is named Spud—that’s short for potato.) They have a plaque on the wall in the clubhouse that says, “The Wind is our Friend.” The club has been known for gentle breezes that help shooters break high scores!

I am sure there are members of your family who like to do things other than shoot trap, and that’s okay because there is a lot to do and see in eastern Idaho and any other part of the state: fly fishing on Henry’s Fork of the Snake River (or just drowning nightcrawlers); the Grand Teton Mountains, close to Jackson, WY; Yellowstone National Park; and hundreds of lakes and rivers, just to name a few adventures shooters and non-shooters alike can enjoy.

The Idaho State Trapshooting Association (ISTA) is working hard to make this a great shoot for both Idahoans and non-residents, so please join us for a great shoot and lots of fun.

We have a shooter who is simply amazing. His name is Stuart Welton; he hardly shoots enough targets every year to make the All-American team, but he is like cream: he rises to the top. Stu, as we call him, is being inducted into the Trapshooting Hall of Fame at this year’s Grand American in Sparta, IL. I certainly hope our Idaho trapshooters will make the trip to shoot some targets and support him; this is quite an honor.

If you need any help, feel free to e-mail me at Bobwclement@gmail.com. We would love to see you at our state shoot!

Bob Clement

ATA Delegate

Utah

The Autumn Grand (Tucson) came and went, as did Thanksgiving. Weather in Tucson was spectacular, as usual this time of year. Utah had fair representation, with about 17 shooters making the trek, and we did bring home a few trophies. Check the scores at shootscoreboard.com.

The Western Zone Big 50 was held in Utah for the first time at the Lee Kay Center. The shoot was hosted by Valley Clays. Thirteen shooters participated in Utah and almost 75 Zone-wide. I am hoping this event will gain traction and grow much larger, with more clubs involved. To find out more information on the Western Zone Big 50, see the “News” section on utahtrap.com. [At press time, December’s payouts had been posted on the ATA website—Ed.]

With very little ATA action going on this month, other than plenty of turkey shoots, I thought I would take this time to do a write-up on the ATA homegrounds in Sparta, IL. During the Grand the local newspaper (County Journal) did a spread on the homegrounds at the World Shooting Complex. I have taken the liberty to utilize much of the information they printed at the time.

The World Shooting Complex site is situated on 1,600 acres. It has 120 trapfields spread out along 3 1/2 miles. There are 1,000 camping spots, ample parking and a large events center with a restaurant. There is a strip mall for vendors and grandstands for opening and closing ceremonies as well as shootoffs.

For those of you who ever attended the Grand in Vandalia, OH, you will remember the wagons utilized for shuttling shooters about the grounds. Those shuttles were brought to Sparta with the same intent of moving shooters from one bank to the next. This was a very short-lived venture. There is so much available parking at Sparta, everyone can drive to and park at their designated shooting banks. Those shuttles are now used as shade and relaxation sites for shooters as well as trap help.

Speaking of trap help, most of all the temporary employees it takes to run the Grand come from many of the local communities in Randolph County. The bulk come from the high schools as well as Scott Air Force Base. Gary Ebers, ATA personnel manager, hires anywhere from 350 to 400 people each summer to help run the shoot. On the biggest days at the Grand, he needs 295 people just to score and load traps, plus 33 line supervisors and such, as well as 30 other employees. Pay is minimum wage with a $75 bonus if they work the whole shoot.

It can be very hot in Sparta during August, but the work is not real physical. Scorers will score for four squads and then take a break. Usually one loader will work two houses. Each trap (Pat-Traps) holds 540 targets, and it takes about 10 minutes to load a house. As one can imagine, it is quite a daunting task to pull off a shoot of this magnitude.

While at the Grand, there are certainly other things to do besides shoot trap. You can shop the strip mall and the tent vendors or enjoy many of the places to eat, either at the Events Center or outside. A favorite of many is the homemade ice cream shop behind Banks 8 and 9. If you need a gunsmith, most all gun manufacturers have reps there, as well as many independent gunsmiths. The Trapshooting Hall of Fame is on the grounds and worthy of at least one visit, if not more. It is also quite a sight to go to the shell house and marvel at how much ammo is for sale. While there, you could also visit the ATA store and buy a shirt or other memento. You could also visit the photo studio and have a commemorative photo taken (hopefully with a trophy).

If you need food and drink supplies for your motorhome/trailer, the Sparta Walmart is worth the visit. I guarantee you will probably see a lot of people you know while shopping there, almost as many as you recognize at the club. If you are a baseball fan, you can try to catch a Cardinals game. St. Louis is only about an hour away.

Finally, on a sad note, we lost two friends recently. First was Jason Holman of Goshen. Jason was taken tragically in a mining accident in Elko, NE. Second was longtime Uintah Basin shooter Gail Herrmann. Gail passed while residing in Oregon.

Ed Wehking

ATA Western Zone Vice President

Washington

Hello again from the great state of Washington. Most of winter is behind us, and some of us have been spending time at our local clubs shooting telephonic leagues, and going to meat shoots to test our skills at buddy backers and Annie Oakley events. A few of us have been south getting a crack at some ATA targets in warmer weather. No matter what Washington’s shooters have been doing to stay occupied in the winter months, we are all looking forward to shooting registered targets all over our state.

Colton GC, Pomeroy GC and Endicott GC have all joined in on the fun of the Western Zone Big 50 program. The third week of each month will see clubs all over the Western Zone throwing 50 singles, handicap and doubles targets. Some Zone-wide options add to the fun. I encourage all of our shooters to give this a try. It’s a good way to get some more ATA targets on your card and stay sharp for the many shoots coming up. You may be able to attract a new shooter to our game or get someone whose faithful shotgun has been put away for a while to get back into the action again. My hope is to get some more sub-junior, junior and Lady I shooters to obtain targets through this method. The last few years have seen it hard to fill state high-average teams in some categories, as not enough shooters have obtained the minimum target requirements. Big 50 targets could be of great help, and a shooter who breaks a 50 at one of these may get excited to load up for a tournament and try for 100!

By the time you read this, Colton GC will be ready for their first registered shoot of the New Year, and everyone will be anticipating the Camas Prairie Handicap to be held in Walla Walla. After this it seems the ball gets rolling, and we have a registered shoot to attend almost every weekend in the region. Many shooters will be registering targets for the first time in the 2019 target year at the Camas and following shoots. Remember, the 18-yard line has been eliminated from competition, so you may need to keep this in mind as you pre-squad. I’ll also remind you to have your average card up to date, and you can pay your membership dues before you arrive to help speed things up at the handicap table and cashier’s window. It is also important to declare any category you may be eligible for at the handicap table if you wish to compete for those trophies.

I look forward to seeing you all at shoots in the near future.

Shoot straight and keep your powder dry.

Sean Lewis

ATA Alternate Delegate

Illinois

Hello, shooters! It’s that time of year again. Winter is wrapping up, and everyone’s getting the itch to go out and shoot. Before you go to the line this year, take a step back and check out how the last year treated you. Did you meet your goals? It’s important to have your sights set on something for the year. It’s what gives you the drive to do better. Just make sure you can tell the difference between short-term and long-term goals. Both are great to have. You can’t get upset if you don’t earn four yards in four weeks, though. It’s okay to make your goals tough, but make sure you stay realistic.

The number of All-Americans from the state of Illinois is incredible. Keep it up! Just make sure you don’t forget to shoot at your local clubs, too. Chasing points is fun, but monthly shoots are a good way to get in some more targets for the state team.

Down in Tucson for the Autumn Grand, as I was watching the scores, Garrett Helms’ name just seemed to come up every time with impressive scores. Finishing with the third-high score on the all-around is pretty impressive. Mike Westjohn had one of only six 200s in the championship singles. Way to represent!

Don’t forget to share with me the good stuff you’re seeing at the shoots. I want to know what you would like to hear about in my articles. Please send them to LNM073@hotmail.com. Happy shooting!

Lauren Mueller

ATA Delegate

Michigan

Happy New Year from Michigan AIM!

Now that 2018 is history, 2019 has snuck in without batting an eye. The Michigan AIM program enjoyed a wonderfully competitive season last year, seeing growth in numbers, new opportunities for shooters and an awesome group of youth standing on the line demonstrating not only solid shooting skills but also outstanding sportsmanship and camaraderie.

The partnership with our MTA and its affiliate clubs continues to be invaluable. The support and mentoring from those who sit on the MTA board, along with the staff that make the MTA shoots happen, create an environment that allow our youth shooters to thrive. Many, many thanks to our friends at the MTA! The grassroots of our program continues to be our home clubs and those who step up to coach and guide our youth shooters. We have awesome coaches, mentors and clubs that help grow this sport. Without you, AIM and the future of this sport wouldn’t be as bright as it is; thank you for all you do!

Michigan AIM is looking forward to the upcoming season. We have clinic shoots in trap, sporting clays, skeet and bunker trap in the works again as interest continues to grow. The 2019 AIM State Shoot will again be held in conjunction with the MTA state program. With the lack of winter weather we have been experiencing in Michigan this year, we are predicting shooters to come out of their annual winter hibernation early and have a strong start to the 2019 season!

Toni Falk

Michigan AIM Director

Minnesota

Greetings from the North Star State! The 2018 all-state teams, based on the 2018 target year, have been announced by Dean Walker, ATA Delegate. Team members are as follows:

Men’s first—captain Eric Munson, Dean Neumann, Peter Walker, John Kelly, Nick Kubasch, Troy Haverly. Men’s second—Bernie Merchlewitz Jr., Glenn Linden, Jason Vlasek, Mark Stevens, Shawn King, Mike Michaelis, Frank Redfield, Larry Burns, Walter Shelstad, Randall Jones. Women’s—captain Morgan Pysk, Laure Zumbusch, Janice Stock, Sally Stevens, Vicky Townsend, Julie Wiens. Sub-junior—captain Jake Mader, Erik Knight, Anthony Klassen, Cody Smith, Benjamin Munson. Junior—captain Colton Sherman, Carson Tauber, Jacob Borgen, Jacob Bocock, Jordan Trenne, Christopher Munson. Veteran first—captain Randy Cook, William Van Nieuwenhuyzen, Pat Laib, Scott Messenger, Curtis Peterson, Dave Harris. Veteran second—Robert Wynnemer, Edward Dietz, James Noben, Robert Newman, John Stone. Senior veteran first—captain Dean Walker, Byron Churchill, Don Wilness, Glenn McCleod, Dennis Steinhaus, Robert Neilsen. Senior veteran second—Allan Klotzbach, Frandell Johnson, Neil Winston, Richard Berger, Thomas Brooks. Congratulations to all.

Congratulations are also in order to Byron Churchill and Scott Messenger, who will be inducted into the MTA Hall of Fame at the state shoot in July. Our 2019 state shoot will be held July 2-7 at the Shooting Park in Alexandria. The Hall of Fame banquet will be held on Friday, July 5.

Remember that even though it is winter in this part of the world, jackpot shooting continues: Minneapolis GC on Saturdays, Buffalo GC on Sundays, Minnesota SC in Zimmerman on Sundays and Del-Tone Luth also on Sundays. Go to the Minnesota TA website for more about the jackpots or contact information for the clubs.

As I write this in very late December, most of Minnesota is in the grip of a real blizzard, with reports of over a foot of snow in many places—including Alexandria, the home of our state shoot. We promise that it will melt before July, so please consider putting the Minnesota State Shoot on your calendar for 2019.

Finally, we want to wish a speedy recovery to the “Old Minnesota Gopher,” Bob Munson, who had shoulder replacement surgery in mid December. As of this writing, he is progressing quite well.

Paul T. Cyr

for ATA Delegate Dean Walker

Saskatchewan

Greetings, shooters, from the Great White North. I say those words with much truth, as it is cold and white in Saskatchewan at the moment. Needless to say, there is no recreational shooting going on at the present time. Hunters have finished up for big game at this time of the year, so most guns are cleaned and safely tucked away for the winter. Some shooters will no doubt head south and become snowbirds for all or a portion of the cold months. SATA’s annual meeting in January was for setting dates and organizing the provincial championships; the host club is helped by all the directors of the SATA to keep our signature shoot running well.

This is a short report this month, but one thing to keep in mind: safety is our responsibility as it is our sport. When you make your Post 5 to 1 walk, be sure your gun is open and unloaded, and walk behind the other shooters in your squad. Have a great winter.

Rod Boll

ATA Delegate

South Dakota

The following shooters earned a place on the 2018 South Dakota all-state team:

Men’s—captain Matt Bartholow, .9810; Foster Bartholow, .9709; Fred Nagel, .9678; Troy Balk, .9471; Todd Hanson, .9469; Rod Larson, .9418; Scott Myren, .9355; Dana Edwards, .9347; Greg Johnson, .9290; Mike Hettinger, .9262. Lady I—Kylie Kaven, .8741; Becky Noble, .8401. Lady II—Vicky Suby, .8908; Charon Geigle, .8694. Sub-junior—Coleman Swanson, .9137; Jayden Youngerman, .7064. Junior—Isabel Myren, .9104; Terrell Viher, .8937. Junior gold—Austin Duvall, .9152; Carter Knecht, .8703. Sub-vet—Tim Reed, .9664; Mark Policky, .9342. Veteran—Bob Orton, .8868; Ken Spence; .8713. Senior vet—Dave Thorson, .9155; Bob Barker, .9069.

Tim Reed earned a place on the ATA All-American sub-vet first team, and Charon Geigle earned a place on the Lady II second team. Congratulations to all! It is no small feat to place on these teams, and we all are very proud of your accomplishments.

As we get into spring, registered shooting will start back up here on the prairie with Crooks GC first out the gate April 27-28. Sisseton TC will have their first shoot May 4-5 and Rapid City on May 11. We welcome Sisseton into registered shooting, as this will be their first shoot with the ATA.

Remember to take someone new to the gun club next time you go shooting.

Bob Felber

ATA Delegate

Wisconsin

Happy Valentine’s to all of my favorite shooters (okay, you all are my favorites). May your love show and shine to those around you.

I was telling a friend yesterday that I don’t know what I would do if I were not shooting at clay targets . . . take up golf, um, not; softball . . . too old now. He said you would not be happy, and he is correct. Not that trapshooting totally defines me, but it is what I look forward to almost every day. If we take away what we truly love, then what? Maybe you would like to e-mail your thoughts on how it has impacted your life.

If you ever want to visit a club that is about giving back to the community, please come visit Weston TC. I attended its annual benefit for the local military veterans hosted by the Patriots, a military veteran support group helping local veterans pay for utilities, food, etc. Patriots president Randy Pliska and his group made sure we had targets to shoot at, cleaned up after us, and smiled as the shooters kept coming. A total of 113 shot, and a total of $3,238 was raised in one day; the goal was $1,000. Wow, wow and wow! This benefit all started on a Harley ride Kyle and Andy were on last summer. Thank you to all volunteers who helped on Dec. 16.

At this time the CWTA (Central Wisconsin Trapshooting Association) is in full trap mode. Check cwtatrap.com for a full list of shoots.

Happy are you Florida shooters to be spending winter in the warmth. My friend Steve Gilbertson sent me photos of the “friendly” gator in the pond in his back yard at the Silver Dollar SC. Steve, stay away from the pond, and keep winning in those club championships events.

If you are planning on attending the Wisconsin State Shoot July 9-14, please make your arrangements soon. Our shoot has been growing, and we would like to see you there.

Remember to keep smiling and support your local club. Help in any way you can with setting up, cleaning up, scoring, etc. . . . you know the drill. I hope to see you soon on the shooting line with a big smile.

Sandra Jo Jack

for ATA Delegate Kevin Doerring

Atlantic Provinces

Hello from the Atlantic Provinces. The 2019 Atlantic Provinces shoot calendar is mostly finalized and available on shootatlantic.com. If your club is planning a shoot and it isn’t listed, get in contact with me and I’ll have it added. Check your gun club’s page on the ATA’s website and make sure you upload shoot programs and shoot results. If shooters aren’t aware of your shoot, they won’t attend.

Updates and changes to shootatlantic.com have been completed. We’ve added a Shooter Centre Menu with content to highlight accomplishments, profiles and a section with tips and important information. The Milestones section will be used to highlight 25 straights, personal-best scores, lifetime target attainments and other noteworthy accomplishments. The Profiles section will include short articles on AP shooters and will introduce them to the rest of the AP as well as the ATA rank and file. The Resources section will be your go-to place for trapshooting and ATA-related information. I often get phone calls, e-mails and text messages asking how to fill out scorecards, how to check registered scores, or how to find the latest ATF Form 6. Shooters new to the ATA will often ask, “What’s a registered shoot, and how do I participate?” The Resources section will have the answer to these questions.

If you like what you see on shootatlantic.com or have any suggestions for content, feel free to contact me. We’re always interested in hearing feedback from those who visit and use our website.

Is your club volunteer-based? Who runs your ATA shoots, leagues and tournaments? Do you have some free time on your hands? Operating a successful club takes a lot of effort and work by dedicated shooters and club directors. All too often it’s the same few members doing the majority of the work. Whether it’s administration, building and equipment maintenance or running a shoot, there’s a lot that needs to happen in order for your club to operate or for a shoot to happen. Get involved and ask if you can help. I’m sure it will be greatly appreciated.

For more information on the APTA, feel free to contact me or visit shootatlantic.com. If you’ll be attending the Spring Grand, track down Herbie and Janaya Nickerson. The father/daughter duo will be there representing the Atlantic Provinces and will gladly answer any questions you have about shooting in Canada’s four easternmost provinces.

I can be reached at aabassan@gmail.com.

Andrea Bassan

ATA Delegate

Massachusetts

I hope everyone had a nice holiday with family and friends. At our Nov. 7 meeting, we set shoot dates for the 2019 shooting season. At a Dec. 12 meeting, our state shoot was finalized for 2019. The dates will be June 6-9 at Minute Man SC. New for this state shoot, we will be throwing 1,100 targets. On Thursday there will be 100 singles, 100 handicap and 200 doubles. Friday will be 100 singles, 100 handicap and 100 doubles. Saturday is the 200 Singles Championship. Sunday will be the Doubles and Handicap Championships, which will be 100 targets for each.

The Labor Day Shoot for 2019 was also nailed down. Dates will be Aug. 31-Sept. 1 at the North Leominster R&GC, with the same format as last year. Both the state and Labor Day shoots will throw White Flyer targets. All this information should be available on the MATA website.

I would like to congratulate the following shooters for making the 2019 state team: Robert Nihtila Jr., .9500; Matthew Cartisser, .9261; Steven Baglione, .9204; Michelle Archambeault, .9192; Thomas Brooks, .9107; Richard Nihtila, .9092; Paul Donovan, .9073; Edward Archambeault, .9002; Nancy Patterson, .8960; Bruce Murphy, .8914. Robert Nihtila Jr. had the high singles average of .9888, also high doubles with .9623, and high all-around with .9500. High handicap went to Michelle Archambeault with .9043.

Three new clubs have been certified this year to throw registered targets. While I was at our state shoot this year, I went out to Danvers F&GC, which is located at 20 Birch Road in Middleton, about 45 minutes from Minute Man SC. I spoke with some of the club officers and looked over the two trapfields they have. The set-up is a little unusual, so I gave them some suggestions on what they would need to do to make it work.

On Nov. 4 I went to Fitchburg SC. The club is located at 289 Rindge State Road in Ashburnham. This club also has two trapfields with a good layout and target presentation. Also on Nov. 4, I looked at Hopkinton SC, located at 95 Lumber Street in Hopkinton. They have one trapfield. The traphouse is a little different, but again suggestions were made that the club will follow up on. The background is good, and the trap throws a good target.

As Delegate, I am required to inspect a club for a number of requirements that must be met in order to receive certification, allowing said club to throw registered targets. Sometimes I run into a situation that is a little different that I or we might not be accustomed to. I try very hard to work with the club, so they can have registered shoots, Big 50s, league shoots, etc. That’s what we want: more clubs and more targets in the air.

As soon as deer season is over, which has not been good (soup is pretty thin this year with no meat) I will be shooting in a winter league at one club and some practice at a couple others. I’m looking forward to seeing everyone when our registered season starts up. I wish everyone good shooting in 2019. If you have any questions, comments or concerns that I can help with, you can reach me at 413-586-0428 or davidrussell945@comcast.net. Remember, have fun!

Dave Russell

ATA Delegate

New Jersey

As I sit here writing this month’s article, Mother Nature continues with rain and wind throughout the state. For the Dec. 29 shoot, North Jersey CTC was able to return two Pat-Traps to their respective houses as river waters receded. Thanks to the club members who helped with removing all five machines prior to the river water inundating the area, as well as those who helped re-install them.

Rich Dettinger of Pine Valley reported that their Christmas toy drive was a complete success, with over 200 toys donated by club members and ATA shooters to the Pine Hill American Legion during their annual Christmas party Dec. 15. Earlier in the year, the Heroes Shoot was held at Pine Valley to honor all the first responders. A check for $800 was presented to Stephen DePerri, president of the Heroes Scholarship Fund, from the proceeds of that shoot. On hand were John Wilson, Stephen, Fund trustee Karl Auwarter and Paul DiMeglio. Rich reported that the clubhouse was packed for the party.

Bob Hofman reported that Pine Valley will be holding their annual Youth Shoot April 13. Fees are $25 per hundred, which includes all state and ATA fees. Participants who compete in two events will receive two boxes of shells, a Krieghoff hat and a T-shirt. Shooters who compete in all three events—singles, handicap and doubles—will receive four boxes of shells. All competitors will receive a ticket for four door prizes, two Krieghoff shooting vests and two Schwinn bicycles. In addition, Krieghoff International will be there with their complete line of demo trap and sporting clays guns for sub-juniors, juniors, ladies and adults to try out. Trapshooting Hall of Famer Harlan Campbell will be on hand to answer questions the young adults might have regarding trapshooting and to hand out trophies at the end of the competition to the talented winners.

Bob also reported that Pine Valley will be hosting a Harlan Campbell clinic April 11-12. Cost for the two days is $375, plus the cost of targets. Please call Paul DiMeglio at 609-517-6170 if interested.

Jeff Slimm reported that Pine Belt will be hosting shooting clinics from Trapshooting Hall of Famer Nora Ross, for handicap and doubles April 8-9 and April 10-11 for singles, handicap and doubles, then on the 12th for singles and the 13th for singles. The two-day clinics are $350, and the one-day clinics are $250, plus cost of targets. Please contact Jeff at info@PineBeltSportsmansClub.com for further details.

On a sad note, Art Parvin of Millville passed away Nov. 24. He was 72 years old. Born in Bridgeton, he resided the last 41 years in Millville. Art was a U.S. Navy veteran, serving in the Vietnam War as an electronics mechanic from 1966 to 1969. Art was a telephone lineman for Verizon, working there 32 years. From there he worked in security at the Cumberland Mall form 2006 to 2018. Art was a member of Quinton SC. He joined the ATA in 1987, where he registered 36,000 singles, 28,800 handicap and 400 doubles targets. He was a member of the Zion Methodist Church in Dividing Creek. He is survived by his wife Dawn Sockwell Parvin, son Arthur Jr., daughter-in-law Judy, daughter Shawn Margaret Wickward, two brothers, a sister and five grandchildren. Memorial donations can be made to the American Cancer Society, 1851 Old Cuthbert Rd., Cherry Hill, NJ 08034.

Club secretary Bruce Osgood informed me of two members of the North Jersey CTC passing away in December. Carlos Lopes of the Iron Bound section of Newark passed away suddenly at Beth Israel Hospital in Newark on Dec. 17. He was 55 years old. Carlos was born in Portugal and emigrated to the United States in 1986. He owned and operated Calope Inc. of Newark. He was a member of the Atlas Club and many Portuguese-related academic and sporting associations in Newark, plus the North Jersey CTC. He joined the ATA in 1988. During his shooting career he registered 3,200 singles, 1,300 handicap and 300 doubles targets. He is survived by his wife Clarinda Marie, daughters Jessie and Nicole and son-in-law Igor Calixto, a sister and many nieces and nephews.

Also, Jerome (Jerry) Marx of Brooklyn, although not a resident of New Jersey but still a friend to many here in the Garden State, passed away Dec. 21. He was 65. I first met Jerry shooting practice at the Staten Island SC over a decade ago. Of late, Jerry was a member of the North Jersey CTC in Fairfield and joined the ATA in 2005. He enjoyed shooting trap and did not register many of his targets but supported both the Staten Island club and North Jersey CTC over the years. He is survived by his wife Judith; daughters Amanda, Samantha and Gabrielle; a brother; and two grandchildren.

If you have a question or an idea for a future article, I can be reached at 732-546-7910 or jasissa@msn.com.

Joe Sissano

ATA Delegate

Ontario

Greetings from Ontario, Canada. Apart from winter leagues and some cold-weather practice, trapshooting, registered or not, is virtually nonexistent in Ontario until spring. More and more of our province’s trapshooters are taking in competitions south of the border; best of luck to all of you.

Now for an initiative that you may want to consider to encourage new members to join the ATA. What I am about to explain may be, for some, one of our best-kept secrets.

Do you realize that every single club that throws ATA targets is given five free ATA one-year memberships and five free AIM memberships each year to give to new shooters at their discretion? This does not apply for renewals. Although I do not have the actual numbers, my information is that a significant percentage of these memberships are never redeemed.

One state in the Eastern Zone is considering an initiative where they would like to make free memberships available to participants in non-registered competitions and have asked if consideration would be given to make an inventory of free first-time memberships available. In discussing this with Lynn Gipson, my understanding is that additional free memberships will indeed be considered. Just contact “membership services” at the ATA office, make your pitch for what you have in mind, and you may find you are accommodated. We want new members. Look into this now before the winter non-registered leagues finish. There are lots of shooters that just may want to give ATA a shot, and a free membership may be all they need to incentivize them.

Paul Shaw

ATA Eastern Zone Vice President

Pennsylvania

Hopefully winter is winding its way down, and some nice shooting weather is right around the corner. The PSSA Hall of Fame has finalized and announced the 2019 Pennsylvania state team members and high-average awards. Making his Pennsylvania debut in a big way was Chris Vendel. He led all Keystone shooters with a composite average of .9615, earning him recognition as captain of the men’s team. Chris also attained the high doubles average of .9682. Ian Darroch and Brandon Deal earned top average honors, with Ian posting a .9297 in handicap and Brandon laying claims to a .9917 singles average. On the ladies’ end of business, Deborah Ohye-Neilson garnered a top composite average of .9471 as well as high singles average of .9828 and high doubles average of .9532. Keeping Debbie from a clean sweep of the high-average awards was Diane Arner, who earned the high handicap average with .9057. Congratulations to all on a great target year!

Other team members include (with number of state teams attained, based on my limited information at writing):

Men’s first—captain Chris Vendel (one), Ian Darroch (nine), Ken Darroch (28), Donald Schaffer Jr. (12), Brandon Deal (seven), Frank Pascoe (27), John Manetta II (seven), Don Neilson Jr. (17), Cody Davis (14), Scott Holdren. Men’s second—Doug Worrell (three), Aaron Hower, Benjamin Shope, Steve Miller (five), Jon Hannahoe, David Darrough (two), Ed Drumheller (two), Bill Natcher, Gary Ehasalu, John Bechtel, Adam Stefkovich (three). Women’s first—captain Deborah Ohye-Neilson (six), Bethany Breighner (eight), Kim Bateman (14), Criona Doorly, Tina Capatch, Linda Loughran (five), Diane Arner (11), KayLynn Hamilton, Donna Natcher (21), Lisa Long (25). Women’s second—Stephanie Wrisley (two), Susan Owens (nine), Robyn Bird (six), Taylor Hansen, Marcy Plunkett (three). Junior first—captain Luke Cowart (four), Wesley Beaver (three), Corre Smith, Tyler Brown (two), Stephen MacNeal (two). Junior second—Jack Noftz (five), Joseph Breck, Micah Fmura (three), Kurt Willman, Kyle Kanuha. Veteran first—captain Steve Huber (23), Jerome Stefkovich (five), Charles Austin (eight), Larry Shade (12), Roger Nee (three), Richard Stefanacci (two), Richard Shaffer, Randy Krick, Bill Tarby, Bruce Rex. Veteran second—Phil Boinske (12), Lou Toth, Robert Morgan, Orville Hunter. Senior vet first—captain Curtis Paul (three), Sheldon Hostetter (24), Butch Bornman (28), Phil Criado (11), Wilbur Ruhl (12), Mike Poore (nine), Richard Long, Lou Sartoris (six), Jack Jabs (seven), Regis Hess (10). Senior vet second—Bert Schoonover (four), Joe Mizikowski, Wayne Shadel, Niles Oehrli (eight), Steven Fitch (10).

Congratulations to all 2019 Pennsylvania state team members!

On a more somber note, we recently lost three shooters from our ranks: Linda Ginther of Pottsville, Bill Walsh of Camp Hill and Dave Karchner of Selinsgrove. I’ve had the esteemed pleasure of knowing these individuals for a number of years and had the pleasure of taking to the trapline with them on many occasions. Linda and her husband Ed were regulars at Elysburg and the surrounding clubs and competed in registered and non-registered events alike, particularly the Schuylkill Co. League. Linda always had a warm smile and kind word, regardless of the day’s results.

Even though he didn’t shoot much the last few years, Dave Karchner always made a trip over to PSSA to catch up with old friends. One of his passions was collecting classic cars, and to this day, I’m still unsure if I ever saw him in the same vehicle twice. Always a consummate gentleman, Dave was positive and enjoyed life his way.

Bill Walsh was a regular at PSSA as well and traveled to many clubs from Camp Hill to Elysburg. Knowing Bill and many of his regular squadmates for a number of years, it became commonplace to cross paths at a local gun club somewhere. Bill had his good days of shooting and his bad days of shooting, but regardless, tomorrow was another day.

On behalf of the PSSA, I express our sympathy to the families and loved ones of Linda, Dave and Bill.

Steve Ross

ATA Alternate Delegate