As the weather cools, trapshooting in Alabama has slowed down. If anyone has any good news they want to share, send it to me.
Read the Rulebook, and I hope everyone is staying safe and well.
Please keep our troops in your thoughts and prayers. Without the men and women of our armed forces protecting this country, we would not be able to enjoy this great sport. When you see a soldier, thank them for their service.
If you need my help or have news to report, contact me any time at 334-399-8271 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you have had just about all the cold weather you can stand, or if you have a case of cabin fever, why not head west? The 45th annual Spring Grand American is hosted by Tucson (AZ) T&SC. Preliminary Week is Feb. 9-14; Spring Grand Week is Feb. 15-21.
Hey, it’s a new year, and let’s think all positive thoughts. Hopefully, with the new vaccines available, the COVID-19 virus will soon be a thing of the past. With that in mind, let’s plan for some big shoots this year:
The 41st Southern Grand American, March 15-21, Silver Dollar, SC, Odessa, FL; Tennessee state AIM Shoot, June 15-16 followed by the state shoot, June 17-20, held in Nashville, TN; ATA Southern Zone Shoot, July 15-18, held in Berea, KY, Bostic, NC, and the Silver Dollar in Odessa, FL; AIM National Championships, July 30-Aug. 3, WSRC, Sparta, IL; 122nd Grand American World Championships, Aug. 4-14, WSRC, Sparta, IL.
Hopefully all these shoots are able to be held this year. But as the dates get closer, check with the clubs to be certain.
Read the new Rulebook. If you don’t have a copy, get on the ATA website, and you can see all 103 pages of it.
For more info, check out our website shootatatn.com. You can reach me at email@example.com.
ATA Southern Zone Vice President
I’m happy to brag on our Arkansas AIM youth shooters. Go check out the AIM website page. There are too many to list, so it will be faster for you to go to the webpage. Good job, young shooters! I hope this year will be just as good for you.
In December the state northern zone VP and director held a zone meeting at the Batesville shooting range. It was a positive meeting, and several good ideas were brought up to enhance shooting in Arkansas.
It’s that time of year when youth shooting really picks up in Arkansas. Be sure to check out the ASTF webpage arkansastrapshooting.com or Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages for shoots near you. There are already several scheduled.
Be up to date on all the ATA rules; visit shootata.com for a copy of the Rulebook. It is the shooter’s responsibility to know these before shooting.
Don’t forget to mark your calendar for the 2021 Arkansas State Shoot June 22-27.
Psalms 34:4, KJV—I sought the Lord, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.
You have surely heard the statement that hindsight is 20/20! Well, now 2020 is in our hindsight. For those of us who made it through, we have quite a few stories to tell, like how the Grand had to move for one year, how many states broke their run of consecutive state shoots, and on and on.
Now that 2020 is truly behind us, we can begin to focus on what lies ahead for the next year. Plans are being made at gun clubs, along with backup plans and discussions on what this year’s shoot attendance will look like due to ammo shortages and possible continuation of travel restrictions. Please have patience with gun club managers and the board of directors, as their crystal ball is not any clearer than anyone else’s.
On behalf of the MTA Board of Directors, I would like to congratulate the following shooters who made the MO state team for 2021:
Men’s—captain Zachari Nannini, .9689; Darrell Farr, .9558; David Deitch, .9489; Hunter Spruill, .9443; Marvin Beumer, .9394; Bobby Chambers, .9382; Hughie Coleman, .9373; David Hull, .9345; Scott Schumaker, .9314; Ethan Boyer, .9314. Ladies’—captain Rae Woods, .9385; McKenzie Albers, .9048; Taylor Houx, .8866; Haley Albers, .7806; Beth Teegarden, .7493. Sub-junior—captain Stephen Loxterman, .8930; Derick Gerding, .8736; Jake Henry, .8632; Noah Trousdale, .8532; Braden Elbert, .7663. Junior—captain James Boswell, .9632; Andrew Stone, .9406; Cody Crabtree, .9383; Austin Stoner, .9363; Hayden Miller, .9269. Veteran—captain Gary Gooch, .9394; Jack Morris, .9335; Thomas Fierge, .9149; David Smith, .9085; Troy Ellis, .9081. Senior veteran—captain Lyndle Pruett, .9556; Ed Powell, .8959; Lloyd Hinton, .8919; Robert Rush, .8855; Curt Wakely, .8844.
Missouri’s AIM program is quite active, and we have in the neighborhood of 250 shooters who attend the AIM state shoot each year, thanks to a lot of work done by MTA youth director Tony Shockley. In case you have not noticed, we do have some rather good youth shooters. I would like to congratulate the following AIM shooters on their accomplishments and making the AIM annual teams.
AIM All-Star teams: Sub-junior—captain Jordan Ziercher. Junior—Andrew Stone. Junior gold—captain Ryan Loveless, Noah Boyer, Tayler Hillis. The All-Zone teams: Sub-junior—captain Thomas Burton, Ian Kutilek. Junior—captain Pete Wann, Hayden Miller. The All-State teams: pre-sub—captain Ann Denny Muehleisen, George Hyams, C. J. Odom, Tyler Burton, Keaton Johnson. Sub-junior—captain Adam Slade, Mason Lucas, Weslie Thien, Derick Gerding, Jack Worsham. Junior—captain Grace Marlen, Kelan Kinion, Hunter Dawson, Andrew Lazarski, Jackson Murphree. Junior gold—captain Hunter Darr, Hanna Cash, Dylan Hale, Thomas Anderson, McKenzie Albers. Thanks to all of the coaches and parents for their commitment to the youth shooting sports.
This last year was pretty difficult for most everyone with all of the COVID restrictions limiting what we can do and how we do it. With all that is going on these days, this passage may help to stay focused. Psalm 46:1—God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.
If anyone has anything they would like to have reported on or has any concerns, I may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 816-863-9003. Shoot often, shoot well, and be safe!
Happy New Year! I hope everyone survived the holidays. Sorry I missed getting my writeup into the January issue. December was a crazy month here in New Mexico with COVID-19. It seem like just when we start to see a little light, that a little normal may be coming, then BAM! Our governor closes everything back down. Now we have a three-colored system in place with green, yellow and red. Of course, red being the worst stage with total closures throughout the state. This was in place here in New Mexico for our holidays. Not red for Santa to come and see us, but red for everyone to stay home.
This past couple of months here in New Mexico, we have been working on the 2021 shoot schedule. The New Mexico State Shoot is scheduled for May 25-30. The host club will again be the NRA Whittington Center in Raton. Just to remind everyone, lodging and RV reservations open Feb. 1. You may contact the NRA Whittington Center at 800-494-4853.
Here is a complete list of New Mexico scheduled shoot dates as of my writeup. Three clubs will be shooting in February: Silver City on the 6th, Albuquerque on the 20th, and Belen the 27th-28th. Four clubs will be shooting in March: Albuquerque on the 6th, Hobbs the 6th-7th, Alamogordo’s annual shoot the 12th-14th, and Silver City on the 20th. Four clubs will be shooting in April: Albuquerque on the 3rd, Belen on the 4th, Alamogordo the 17th-18th, and Silver City on the 24th. Four clubs will be shooting in May: Farmington on the 8th, Roswell on the 8th, Silver City on the 15th, and then NRA Whittington Center will host the NMSTA State Shoot the 25th-30th in Raton. Three clubs will be shooting in June: Hobbs the 4th-6th, Albuquerque on the 5th, and Belen the 12th-13th. Only one club will be shooting in July, Silver City the 24th-25th. Five clubs will be shooting in August: Albuquerque on the 7th, Raton’s annual shoot the 14th-15th, Alamogordo the 21st-22nd, Fort Summer on the 28th, and Silver City’s annual the 28th-29th. Five clubs will be shooting in September: Belen’s annual the 4th-5th, Silver City on the 11th, Farmington’s annual the 18th-19th, Albuquerque’s annual the 25th-26th, and NRA Whittington Center starts on the 30th and will also shoot Oct. 1-3. Four other clubs will also shoot in October: Alamogordo the 9th-10th, Hobbs’ annual the 15th-17th, Roswell on the 23rd, and Albuquerque on the 30th. Albuquerque is the only club scheduled to shoot in November, on the 20th and also Dec. 18. For a complete up-to-date shoot schedule, please look at the ATA or NMSTA websites.
The months of November, December and January are always pretty slow here. By the time this comes out in the February issue, we will have had a couple of New Mexico high school shoots, and I hope that Albuquerque was able to host its Jan. 30-31 shoot. The high school team in Silver City, the Bootheel Shotgunners Senior Team, has posted the high team total score in November and December. Great shooting!
All other New Mexico shoots were canceled in November and December due to COVID-19, so some of our shooters traveled out of state to shoot. Sixteen made the trip to Tucson and represented the state well at the 2020 Autumn Grand. Let’s all hope that we are able to enjoy more ATA shooting events in 2021.
Last but not least before I finish this off, I hope this find you all healthy and doing well! Remember to make sure you take a friend or a youth shooter to the range; let them enjoy our wonderful sport.
You may contact me at 575-538-1016 or email@example.com.
Shawnee had good weather, and 20 shooters shot their Dec. 6 derby shoot. Brian Stoa broke the winning singles score of 47. Randy Hill, Robert Rimer and Gary Bristol all had 46s. Randy and Emile Heitland won first place in the handicap with 45s, Brian placed second with 44, and Rylei Peery took third with 41. Larry Higgs won the doubles with 46. On that day in 1941 at Pearl Harbor, the USS Oklahoma was sunk with 429 lives lost, and a total of 2,400 were lost. The USS Oklahoma anchor now rests on a memorial site in Oklahoma City.
We have now added Blakely Barnett to the 2020 Oklahoma state trap team, Lady I, with an average of .9309. In the ATA printout, Blakely was listed under junior and should have been under Lady I. Congratulations, Blakely! Please feel free to call me if you have any questions on the state team. Almost every year there are some wrong listings. Most are caught and corrected, but some can only be caught if you contact me.
Ada’s Dec. 1 Tuesday shoot had a four-way tie for first place. Randy Farmer, Vickie Farmer, Randy Hill and Austin Palmer all had 42s. Their Dec. 8 shoot had a tie between Randy Farmer and Hill with 43s.
Wade Drennan of Ada passed away Nov. 3 at the age of 79 due to complications of the coronavirus. Wade attended gunsmith school at Murray State College in Tishamingo, OK. A lot of his time was devoted to instructing youth shooters. Our condolences go out to his family.
OTA canceled their derby shoot due to weather.
Shawnee had a good day for their Dec. 19 derby shoot. Nathan Lemke’s 49 was high in the singles, and Johnny Wilson was next with 46. Emile Heitland won first place in the handicap with 43, while Mitchel Wyatt, Mike Meeks and Chris Perry were second with 39s. Johnny Wilson, Robert Brink and Randy Hill placed third with 37s. Nathan won the doubles with 46, and Wyatt was next with 44.
Ada’s Dec. 22 Tuesday shoot was won by Collin Rindel with 44.
OTA’s Dec. 27 derby shoot had strong northwest winds that made the targets sporty. Lemke was able to run 50 straight in the singles, and Ron Bliss was next with 48. Randy Hill won first place in the handicap with 43. Second place was a tie, with Lee Donlon and Jeff Barker breaking 42s, and third place was won by Dennis Patrick with 41. Jeff was high in the doubles with 46, and Ron was next with 41.
Let’s keep all the healthcare workers and those affected by the pandemic in our prayers. Take care and stay safe.
Well, well, well, Santa has come and gone; 2021 is here, and all three of you will be reading this in the shortest month of the year. I hope and pray that 2021 will be a better year than 2020. COVID-19 has affected many families this past year. Many were affected by the loss of loved ones. Many were affected by loss of jobs, closure of their business, and nearly all were affected by drastic changes to their everyday activities. We can only hope that 2021 will be much better.
Many of you know of the **** list I started last year, containing the names of people who show up to be classified and do not have an up-to-date average card. On Page 7 of the Rulebook, it clearly states that every person should have an up-to-date average card to present to the person or persons doing the classification at any registered shoot. I want to use this column to alert everyone that you do not want to get your name on that list for a third time. This is not a warning; it is a promise that you will be penalized to the extent that this rule allows. I’m sure I will not be very popular with this three-strike rule, but I have been warning people for several years.
I have some more “fatman attaboys” to pass out today. Congratulations to David Carson and Don Rackley. David has now registered 25,000 singles targets. Don has now registered 75,000 handicap targets. Congratulations to these two guys. They both do a lot of work for trapshooting in Texas. Give them an “attaboy” when you see them.
If you haven’t made your plans to attend the Southwestern Grand at the National SC in San Antonio, I urge you to do so now. Royce and Amber have made many improvements at the complex. All the old wobble Pat-Traps have been removed, and the other machines have been reworked. Officers of the Texas Trapshooting Association will be on hand to help in any way they can. You will never know of all of the improvements and hard work that have been done if you don’t attend. You will be very impressed with the target presentation. Let’s give Royce and Amber a chance to show all the improvements they have made. The Southwestern Grand will be April 6-11. Make your plans to attend now.
Oh, by the way, did I mention the Rulebook? If not, please don’t worry because I’m going to mention it now. I understand this is not the most exciting thing in the world to read, but it is important that you know the rules. As I have said before, “The person on the line that is the loudest about rules questions usually knows the least about the rules.” It is your responsibility to know the rules. If a question comes up on the line and you don’t think it is being resolved correctly, ask for an official before firing at another target. Many errors on the line cannot be corrected after another shot is fired. Please do your part and know the rules.
The year 2020 has been like nothing I have ever seen. Maybe we are on the way to stopping this deadly virus with the vaccines that I hope will soon be available to everyone. Please stay safe. I look forward to seeing everyone in 2021.
As I have said before, if you have news, please let Princess or me know about it. Last but not least, or maybe it is, I have a new snail mail address: 907 S. Main St., Hereford, TX 79045.
Till next time, y’all shoot well, y’all shoot often, and y’all have a great time.
That was so nice, let’s do it twice—I am speaking about the Arizona State Shoot, naturally. The 2021 one is on from March 23-28 at Tucson. This is the best time of year to enjoy Arizona shooting. The average temperature in Tucson is a perfect 78°, with only an 8% chance of rain and moderate winds. I have done my meteorological homework. Tucson is one of the finest facilities in the country, and they really know how to run a large shoot. There is $30,000 in added money and trophies, with residents and non-residents sharing equally. In fact, the out-of-staters outnumber the home boys 2 to 1, and they are a very important part of our high season. We treat you like family, and always with a smile. The Competition Factor is usually 3, with around 450 shooters, and it marks the end of our winter/early spring schedule. Every year I meet a number of folks who like Arizona and Arizona trapshooting so much that it is becoming their new home. Enough of the snow and cold weather, the high taxes and traffic; come on down! Karen and I made that trek 11 years ago from New York. The Arizona State Shoot is a great place to start.
Smoke and chips: our Hall of Fame Classic has been postponed and will probably take place in late October. The recent upsurge in COVID-19 has caused too much uncertainty, and the pavilion at Ben Avery is unavailable for the ceremony. Things should be finalized at the ASTA Board of Directors meeting at the state shoot.
Please do not forget the annual meeting Sunday morning, March 28 at 8 a.m. It precedes the Doubles and Handicap Championships. There will be an election for directors in all zones and for the Delegate and Alternate Delegate. (Yeah, I know that we just went through that in November, but ATA rules are ATA rules). Anyone who is interested in serving your fellow shooters, please let Steve Bell, our hardworking secretary-treasurer, know. The hours are long and the pay is low, but you will have eternal gratitude and much envy from those who did not run. We will also be presenting the state team; there will be a very short talk from the Delegate, and plenty of time should be left for questions and suggestions from the floor.
Around the state: At Casa Grande’s Big 50s on Nov. 23, Steve Johnson led all comers with a perfect 50 in the singles. Then Ron Schroer not only led the senior veterans in the ’caps, his 94 topped everyone. Steve Johnson finished out by beating all other Arizona shooters in the doubles with 47, and Bob Mlynarz was one bird behind.
Then came Casa Grande’s Thanksgiving Shoot, which took place Nov. 25-29, and it was well attended. It was a good mix of Arizona and wish-they-were-from-Arizona shooters. Bill Simonds, who won Class C, and Phil Vasquez, the senior vet champ, held up our honor in the opening singles. We struck out in the handicap, but Bob Mlynarz came through in the doubles by taking Class B. On Thursday our side started to wake up. Greg Spiczka won the doubles in Class A; Jim Dremler, B; and Brett Hardesty, C. Then came the handicap, with Rick Klawitter winning mid-yardage, and Greg was the short-yardage champ. The following day, Greg got things going with a 100 straight in the singles, Britt Dalton was tops in AA at 99, Vasquez took B, and Wayne Thompson was the high senior vet. Next came the handicap, and Britt won long-yardage, Dremler was high at mid-yardage, and Spiczka once again took short-yardage. Fred Frazier, however, beat the entire field and emerged as the senior vet champ. Doubles closed out the day, and Arizona shooters dominated: Dalton won AA; Bill Medlicott, A; Robert Will Pike, C; and Brett Hardesty, D. Saturday also featured all three disciplines, starting with the doubles. Thompson was tops in B, Darrel Goen took C, and Spiczka D. Doug Sims was the high senior vet. Britt D. was AA singles champ with a perfect score, and Greg was not far behind, winning Class A. We had two more winners in this event: John Owenby in D and Jackson Link in sub-junior.
Now for the handicap, I usually mention how welcoming Arizona shooters are, but not in this event. In short, we swept the field. Dalton took long-yardage; Dremler, mid-yardage; Spiczka, short-yardage; Hardesty, junior; Mark Lacey, veteran; and John Owenby, senior veteran. Sunday also saw some now-familiar names and a few new ones. Dalton won AA in the singles and long-yardage in the ’caps. Spiczka was the short-yardage and D champ in the doubles. Fred Frazier won B in the singles, as did Hardesty in C and Ronnie Oakley in D. Jeff Rogers was the high gun in mid-yardage in the handicap. Darrel Goen won C in the doubles, and Greg S. concluded a terrific shoot by taking D. Schroer closed things out by winning the senior vet championship.
Vasquez was tops for Arizona in the Monday Big 50s at Casa Grande Dec. 14. Helen Kisthardt was right behind. Senior vet Larry Ream beat all others from the Copper State in the handicap, followed by Phil, and Mark Lacey took the Arizona crown in the doubles, squeezing out Phil.
On Dec. 2 Lazy 2 hosted their Back in the Saddle Jingle Shoot at Ben Avery Dec. 11-13. The Pride of Prescott, Joe Henderson, shot the only 100 straight while winning the senior vet championship in the opening singles. Ken Mlynarz tied for the open class, and Kristi Williams (yes, she is back, gals) tied Gerry and won Lady II. Steve Stella was the high vet. Event 2 was the ’caps, and Jesse Zamora was the high gun. Gerry Williams took senior veteran, but try as he may, Gerry could not top Kristi, who won Lady II again. Randy Wegerski won veteran. Henderson concluded a pretty nice day with a top score of 98 in the doubles. Stella’s 97 took veteran, and Gerry Williams, also at 97, won Class A. Ken Mlynarz was the high open shooter. Steve Haynes and Bob Mlynarz tied for B, and George Miller proved that there is life in the old guy yet, tying Zamora for C.
Saturday started with the doubles, and Jim Sharp ran away from the field, and with that, he took the senior vet crown. Squadmate Max Peevyhouse won sub-vet, Milt Kennedy was high in C, and Karen Bergman took Lady II. Event 5 was 100 singles, and Ken Mlynarz and Gerry Williams did not miss a bird. They won Class A and senior vet, respectively. Milt Kennedy and Jim Kidwell tied for B, junior Nathaniel Pizinger won C, and Larry Bright’s fine 97 beat all others in D. Karen Bergman was tops in Lady II. The handicap finished out the day, and Jeff Rogers, shooting at Post 1, Squad 1, bested the field by two. The No. 2 guy on that squad, Jake Gatschet, tied for high senior vet and was tops in the 19-21 group. Maybe something is to be said for starting early. Karen was the high Lady II.
Sunday was cold (for Phoenix) and windy, but Jim Sharp shrugged it off. His 99 was high for the opening singles, Stella won veteran, Jim Kidwell B class, Kaitlin Quan Lady I, Bergman Lady II and Peevyhouse sub-vet. The weather made for a difficult handicap, and it was reflected in the scores, especially mine. Ken Mlynarz led the field with a 95, while sub-junior Wyatt Pizinger’s 93 clinched the runnerup spot. Steve Haynes was tops in the 22-24 group, Jake Gatschet won senior vet, and Zamora was high veteran.
Shoots from mid February to mid March are the Spring Grand American at Tucson Feb. 15-21; doubles marathon, Rio Salado, Feb. 18; Ben Avery, Feb. 26-28; Big 50s, Casa Grande, March 1; CG’s Breast Cancer Shoot, March 2-7; singles marathon, Rio Salado, March 4; Double Adobe, March 6-7; Big 50s, Casa Grande, March 8; Ben Avery, March 10-14; Lake Havasu, March 12; and Big 50s, Casa Grande, March 15.
Don’t forget the Arizona State Shoot March 23-28 at Tucson. See you on the line!
The new target year began with several southern California shooters traveling to the NSTA Fall Handicap at the Clark Co. SC in Las Vegas, NV, the weekend of Sept. 25-27. Scores were very good, and the California contingent returned with a number of trophies. I don’t have the individual results for the first event, which was a 50-bird race, but four of our shooters—Edward Duitsman, William Sergent, Dale Sterling and Mark Johnson—all broke 49. Eddie Woods was the Event 2 champion with 100 from the 24; Duitsman, 19-22, 95; Johnson, 26-27, 96; and Rich Davis, veteran, 96. Event 3 champion was Sterling with 99; Kenneth Amari, 19-22, 96; Johnson, 26-27, 97; and Deanna Schooler, Lady I, 84. Event 4 champion was Robert VanVacter with 96 from the 22 and 25 in shootoff; Duitsman, 19-22, 94; Michael Bates, 23-25, 95; James Schooler, 26-27, 96; Davis, veteran, 95; and D. Schooler, Lady I, 90. Event 5 champion was Sergent with 97 and 50 shootoff; Bates, 23-25, 97; J. Schooler, 26-27, 97; Zihao Tian Jr., 97; and D. Schooler, Lady I, 91. Event 6 winners included Tony Gallegos, 19-22, 95; Woods, 23-25, 96; J. Schooler, 26-27, 96; Tracy Steven Heintz, veteran, 94; and D. Schooler, Lady I, 87. HOA winners were VanVacter, 19-22, 376; Bates, 23-25, 375; J. Schooler, 26-27, 381; Terry Bilbey, veteran, 377; Tian, 369; and D. Schooler, Lady I, 352. Special congratulations to Mark Johnson for surpassing 50,000 registered handicap targets at this shoot.
The Autumn Grand in Tucson, AZ, drew a total of 68 California shooters. By my count, they collected a total of 12 trophies during the 11 events in the HOA. Several others were unsuccessful in various shootoffs, but they certainly made their presence known. Trophy winners were as follows:
Prescott Handicap, 22-24, Ken Jossenberger, 94; Yuma Doubles, sub-vet, Gary Bonetti, 99; Tucson Singles Class Championship, veteran, Ray Thomas, 100; junior gold, Hunter Seymore, 100; Tucson Doubles Class Championship, B, Jules Azzi, 97; Caesar Guerini Pre-Handicap Championship, Lady II, Annette Spiteri, 94; Singles Championship, C runnerup, Robert Phelps, 194; veteran, Thomas, 200; Doubles Championship, junior gold runnerup, Seymore, 100; Handicap Championship, champion, John Studley, 99 from the 27 (great shooting!); junior gold runnerup, Seymore, 98; all-around, AAA, Seymore, 396.
Seymore, California’s recent World Clay Target champion, had to catch a flight back to Texas Tech and was unable to participate in the shootoffs for the doubles and all-around championships. Still, it was a fantastic way to start the target year. Way to go, Hunter!
Redlands SP held their annual Thanksgiving Shoot Nov. 27-29. I don’t have the individual results for Friday’s events, but on Saturday and Sunday, buckles were awarded based on the combined scores of each day’s handicap events. Saturday winners: 19-20, Sarah Sherlock, 190; 21-23, Mark Kopecky, 188; 24-26, Jeffery George, 185; 27, Eddie Woods, 194; ladies’, April Vargas, 179; junior, Michael Silfies, 181; veteran, Rich Davis, 194. Sunday winners: 19-20, Richard Milton, 187; 21-23, Daniel Lopez Jr., 188; 24-26, Michael Bates, 181; 27, Woods, 190; ladies’, S. Sherlock, 183; junior, Nathan Kosmatka, 182; veteran, Davis. HOA, Woods, 384; runnerup, Davis, 383.
Two California shooters recently surpassed significant milestones in their shooting careers. Kerrie Largent shot at her 100,000th registered target while at the Autumn Grand in November, and James Huynh shot at his 25,000th doubles target at Redlands SP in December. James was also recognized by the ATA for registering over 20,000 targets (28,500) during the 2020 target year.
Next month I plan on providing information on the requirements and process for nominating someone for induction into the California Trapshooting Hall of Fame. Stay healthy and shoot well!
Good day, fellow trapshooters! I certainly hope by now that all of us have either received the vaccine for the COVID-19 virus or are about to get one. For a lot of shooters, this will be the signal to start getting back into the sport. Our thoughts and prayers go out to all of those who lost family members or friends from this deadly virus.
Life is funny sometimes in a good way, so I would like to share a personal story illustrating this. About five years ago I was watching a hunting show about Chris Dorsey, an avid hunter and outdoorsman who was on a trip to the Sandhills of Nebraska to hunt mule deer. Chris bagged a large buck. I thought it was awesome, and it would be a dream hunt for me—a bucket list item. At the end of the show there was a phone number, which I wrote down and called several days later. A few days passed, and I received a call from the owner of the property, Stan Baker of “The Rackett,” who was very polite and enthusiastic about my dream hunt possibilities. It is a long way from where I live, and I thought it would be a “someday” dream. For some reason I kept his phone number and would check in with him from time to time, and to my delight, we started talking about trapshooting. He had a lot of questions about the sport, and we talked about it, sometimes several times a week. One day I ran into Stan at the Tucson T&SC and finally got to put a face to the name. He reminded me of a prizefighter with his stance, looking ready to beat the heck out of those clay birds. Little did I know that he used to be a boxer, one of the many things Stan has successfully accomplished. To name a few of his roles in life: a policeman, a stock brokerage owner, a rancher, a father, a husband, a stock trader, and his love in life a trapshooter. One of his goals is to turn 100 targets into smoke from the 27-yard line in an ATA-registered shoot. Believe me, he will accomplish that goal because he is a very driven, smart and caring person. Over the past five years we have become really close friends. I hope you have the privilege to shoot with and befriend this gentleman named Stan Baker, who is still the owner of Hunt The Rackett. The Rackett is a 30,000-acre shooting and hunting resort in Garden County, NE. I decided to take the journey and check it out. Hunt the Rackett is essentially a private club which serves as a sanctuary for shooters of all kinds. It’s a virtual Disneyland for trapshooters. Stan calls it almost a spiritual place, where trapshooters come to find the zone. I experienced some of that while I was there. I must say I was blown away—four regulation trapfields, two sporting clays courses, helice ring, pheasant and chukar hunting, deer hunting. He has plans for full-fledged bunker and skeet set-ups. No, I am not his PR person, just impressed with what Stan has done for the sport of trapshooting!
Now for my home state of Idaho. Guys and gals, I need your help! The ATA Western Zone Big 50 has been opened to all ATA clubs for 2021. There are a few rules, but very few: need to shoot them on ATA-approved trapfield; minimum of three shooters per event; 16s, handicap and doubles, and you can shoot it as often as you like in a month. One real advantage is that it gets you registered ATA targets and can help you avoid penalty yardage at your state or other ATA major shoots. Another real bonus to this program is, if you are just shooting practice, why not add value by shooting this program that gets you registered targets and helps you get in the zone?
So do me and yourself a favor; talk to your club members and officers to support this program. This program is going ATA-wide, and your scores and winnings will appear on the www.shootata website. Wow, you will become famous! No more talk; we need action! [See the article in the October 2020 issue, Page 69—Ed.]
So long for now. Keep your powder dry and break some great scores!
Good, bad or ugly, another year is in the books. We have closed a chapter of our lives that hopefully we will never see the likes of again. Although it is entirely possible that phrases such as “unprecedented times,” “the new normal,” “never before seen,” “social distancing,” “lockdowns,” “stimulus plans,” “mask mandates,” “pandemic.” etc., will be the norm, not the rarity.
As the German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche wrote, “That which does not kill us makes us stronger.” Sadly, this can be applied to the year 2020 as a whole. It may be very likely that because of what we have learned this past year, we may have to take precautions from now forward, and maybe not catch the flu or the common cold as much. Giving hugs and handshakes may be things of the past (I certainly hope not). I, for one, hate fist bumping, but I find myself doing it more and more instead of shaking hands.
Alas, I digress. What does becoming stronger have to do with trapshooting? Everything! Each time we miss a target, lose a shootoff, or don’t meet our own expectations on the line, we should learn something. Losing and the fear of losing should be great motivators. Analyze what went wrong and turn it into a positive.
I thought I would point my compass needle in a slightly different direction this month. I want to highlight one of our trap help (puller, scorer), Bailey Peckham. Our sport is one that without a scorekeeper to tell us when we do well or badly (break the bird or miss), we wouldn’t have competitions.
Bailey has been pulling/scoring for a little over three years at Lee Kay Shotgun Center for the local Valley Clays weekly league and at an occasional ATA shoot. Valley Clays league runs for six weeks at a time, year-round on Thursday nights. The pullers make an hourly wage, but their real bread and butter comes from the tips they earn. On a good league night, they can make $75 in tips. This ensures that we can always find pullers to work. Bailey started scoring when she was a sophomore at Cyprus High and now continues to score while she is in her second year of college at the University of Utah in the nursing program.
What I want to highlight about Bailey is that she is one of the frontline heroes fighting the COVID-19 battle. Here are some of her duties, in her own words:
“I am a certified nurse’s assistant at the University of Utah Hospital, working on the acute care COVID floor and the ICU COVID floor. I have been there since the pandemic started in March and actually had the very first COVID patient at the hospital. I assist five to seven patients on a typical day, where I care for them by doing tasks, such as using the bathroom, bathing, dressing, feeding and everyday cares. The challenge I face during this time is the Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) we wear. We wear our PAPR hoods for very long periods of time and can only take little breaks to drink and eat. We have to change our PPE after every room and disinfect our PAPR hoods. This gets exhausting, but I do it with a smile, and I’m happy to help those in need!”
Asked about work, school and what the future holds, Bailey continued:
“On top of working part-time for 36 hours a week, I also take four to five classes a semester for 12 to 15 credit hours. I will graduate in the spring of 2023; I then plan on furthering my career and working at the University of Utah Hospital as a nurse and would love to work in the emergency room.”
Prior to working at the University Hospital, Bailey worked at a nursing home, caring for patients in the Alzheimer’s and dementia unit.
My thanks go out to all the frontline heroes such as Bailey during these trying times.
ATA Western Zone Vice President
Greetings from Washington. I hope you’ve had a good winter and are ready to get back out there and shoot some ATA targets. We had our annual fall directors meeting at Ritzville on Halloween. Clubs throughout the state submitted shoot dates, and we are looking forward to a great year. There are no shoots scheduled for August or October, leaving room for more clubs to schedule shoots or for clubs to have additional shoots, whether one-day, multiple-day or Big 50 program events.
The Colton GC will kick things off Feb. 20 with a 300-target program and then our first big shoot of the spring will be the Camas Prairie Handicap March 19-21. The Spokane GC will host the Northwest Grand April 10-11 followed by Coulee April 30-May 1, with Friday being all doubles. The Marlin GC will have a shoot May 2. With Coulee City and Marlin being in close proximity, this makes for a great three-day weekend of shooting.
In May the Spokane GC will hold an abbreviated version of the long-in-tradition Inland Empire Handicap with their now limited traps available on the current site. May 29-30 the Evergreen SC will host a shoot, and we are happy to have them scheduling some ATA events. Colton will go for two days June 5-6 then Othello GC June 12-13. The Odessa GC will give it a whirl June 16, a great tune-up before the WSTA Championships at Walla Walla June 24-27. The Walla Walla GC has made some trap upgrades and grounds improvements and is eager to play host to a state shoot for the first time since 2012. Camas Prairie shoots have been successful at Walla Walla, and we are confident that WSTA will have equally good results as well.
July sees Colton as a site for the ATA Western Zone again this year July 17-19 followed by Malden-Pine City on July 25. There will be a break in the action as scheduled so far until we converge at the Colton GC again Sept. 19. As you can see, there are some weekends available for your club to share in the fun with some ATA targets.
We’d like to thank George and Karma Seubert for their efforts to provide two life memberships for youth at the 2021 state shoot as well as WSTA Hall of Famer Larry Bunch for providing a third gold card for some lucky junior or sub-junior participant. Our sport is fortunate for these opportunities to encourage kids into a lifetime of trapshooting, which in many cases brings the folks into the fold as well.
There will be more to write about as the shooting season progresses. In the meantime, we’ll get the old smoke wagons tuned up, shells loaded and boxed up, and be marking our calendars for all the fun we’ll be having shooting ATA targets in the region. Once again, I suggest paying dues online and making sure your average cards are printed and up to date to save time classifying and at the cashier’s window, as we may well be taking precautions against COVID-19 as we return to the clubs. Check to see if your average card shows a yardage reduction if you are pre-squadded for shoots, which will make the process smoother as well. If you get a chance to head to the range soon, take a kid or new shooter with you. We look forward to seeing you soon!
Shoot straight and keep your powder dry.
ATA Alternate Delegate
I don’t have any shooting-related news this month, so I am going to use this column to talk about some exciting news dealing with the Illinois Hall of Fame. Earlier this year I told you about the Illinois Board of Directors voting to raise funds to build a new, bigger and better building for the HOF. We found a company that makes bricks with the name of a donor that are used to make a walkway leading into the building. This may sound strange to you, but trust me, the affect is actually quite impressive. We used this method to raise money to build an all-weather track at the high school in my hometown. My eyes are always drawn to it when I walk in to watch an athletic event.
We are setting up a link on the ISTA webpage that you can click on to look at the bricks and donate money. If you have already donated, we have a record of it, and you will also have a brick on the walk of fame. Illinois director Bill Huhn has generously agreed to run this program, and he can be reached at 708-408-8286 or firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.
I know money is tight, but please consider giving. This walkway will only enhance the HOF and make it something we can all be proud of through the years.
I will not be traveling to shoot this winter, so all my friends in Florida and Arizona, shoot well and stay safe.
Greetings, Indiana shooters! I hope everyone had a safe and happy holiday season and is staying healthy this winter. I am already looking forward to some warmer weather and shooting in Indiana to resume this spring.
I would like to congratulate our 2020 Indiana all-state team members. The list is now posted to our indianatrap.com website. Members of the men’s open team include Devon Harris, Jason Seitz, Michael Grannan, Bobby Bolden, Michael Gooch, Tom Kleyla, David Heeringa, Ed Budreau, Tim Richards and Brian Ingle. The Lady I team is represented by Chrissy Byrd, with Ronette Brumfield and Terry Bolden on the Lady II team. Sub-junior members are Colton Vail and Dylan Hall, with Ethan Buck on the junior team and Dillen Johnson on the junior gold team. Sub-veteran team members are Tank Lunsford, Gary Richards, Mike Williams, John Brumfield, George Obren, Steve Byrd, Bob Johns, Bernie Matthews, Herbert Dinkel and Jarold Teeter. The veteran team consists of David Winn, Garl Gresley, Al White, Paul Schierenberg, Roger Verstraete, Kelvin Roots and Bill Mager. The senior vet team members are Thomas Rhoads, Jack Curry, John Roussel, Ken Heathcoate, Tom Antczak Sr., Ben Morriston, Charlie Vise, R. Scott Norris, Bill Tempest and Michael Stephenson. Again, congrats to all these shooters on this accomplishment!
For the high average by event awards for 2020, Devon Harris had the high average for both singles (.9867) and doubles (.9760). Scott Cochran had the high average for handicap at .9410, all shot from the 27-yard line.
Unfortunately I have some sad news to report. Bobby Bolden of Deputy, IN, passed away Dec. 19. I am really struggling to find the words to do justice to what a loss this is to our Indiana trap community. Bobby was a phenomenal competitor on the trapfield, but his personality off the field certainly made him a true one-of-a-kind. Bobby is one of the few people who no matter when I saw him the first time at each shoot, I’d drop whatever I was doing and go talk to him. He’d always have something to say or a story to tell that would stick with me. I consider myself fortunate to have camped across from Bobby the past few years at the Indiana State Shoot and will always cherish the time we got to spend with him at the Grand this year at Linn Creek. I know I speak for many, many people when I say Bobby will be greatly missed. My condolences to his wife Terry and their entire family.
Make sure your calendars are marked for the 2021 Indiana State Shoot to be held at our Indiana GC homegrounds July 6-11.
Don’t hesitate to let me know if you need anything or would like to have anything included in this article for Indiana. My e-mail is email@example.com.
Greetings from Iowa! Well, I guess Ole Man Winter is definitely here, and it looks like he is going to stay for a while. Shooting has slowed, but reloading and preparing for the spring are in full swing.
I want to congratulate our AIM shooters on a great year. The 2021 AIM All-Star team members from Iowa: Sub-junior—Carson Feeney. Junior—Tommy Keeshan, Raylee Bishop, Wyatt Lindstrom, Devan Myers. Junior gold—Marcus Draves. The 2021 AIM All-State Team: Sub-junior—Noah Conley, Brett Azinger, Aiden Lane, Addison McGehearty, Edwin Schroeder. Junior—Brayden Carlson, Drew Baxter, Chayden Wright, Blaedyn Benscoter, Carson Cummings. Junior gold—Brent Alman, Taylor Nelson, Sam Wiley, Hunter Brock. The 2021 AIM All-Zone team: Pre-sub—Joshua Wohlford. Sub-junior—Jackson Wohlford. Junior—Josh Meyer, Michael Lemburg. Junior gold—Alyssa Smith. Congratulations to all on these great achievements!
Good luck to all our friends and neighbors who are attending the Spring Grand in Tuscon Feb. 15-21. Make plans to attend the Southern Grand in Odessa, FL, March 15-21.
Remember, if you have questions or comments, I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 641-990-2314. Until next month, stay warm and safe.
In February here in Michigan, there’s not a lot of registered trapshooting going on. So let’s look at a couple individual accomplishments. Jeff Stolaruk has shot 24,600 doubles. The ATA has an award for 25,000. Bill Bernardara has registered 74,600 singles. If he can get off Gross Isle (one of the two bridges is closed), getting to the 75,000-target award won’t take him long.
In your planning to get to the MTA at Mason this year, please note that the I-94 to U.S. 127 North interchange is scheduled for a complete rebuild this summer. While there will be detours posted, they will require extra time. The Barnes Road overpass over U.S. 127 is in really bad shape, and the Michigan Department of Transportation has variously said it would be closed this summer or in 2022. If it’s closed, use Kipp Road (the next exit north) and come back south to get to the MTA.
I can hardly wait to shoot at Mason again.
- B. Lewis
Greetings from the North Star State! As I write this on Christmas, winter has returned to Minnesota, along with some winter-like temperatures. Most of the state had a real blizzard Dec. 23, which limited travel to a great degree. Shooting news is really slim at this time of the year, although I did see that a few of our snowbirds (George Pappas and Joe Barnhorn in Florida and Michael Hicks in Arizona) did some shooting before Christmas.
The MTA did receive word (and a check in excess of $6,000) that they would get their rebate from the ATA. That is always good news, especially in the wake of almost no registered shooting in the state for the 2020 calendar year.
If you are hoping to shoot some weekend jackpots or just want to get out and shoot a couple of boxes of shells, please check the club’s website or call for the latest information about the club you would like to attend.
With the delivery of the first batch of COVID vaccines comes the hope that 2021 can begin our return to normalcy in the trapshooting world.
Until next month, stay safe. I can be reached at 507-456-2000 or at email@example.com. Randall Jones’ contact information is available on the MTA website.
Paul T. Cyr
for ATA Delegate Randy Jones
The all-Ohio team is out. Congratulations to all who made the team.
It has been a trying year with all the shoot cancellations and postponements. Hopefully 2021 will be much better. The board of directors are in the process of putting together the zone shoots and the state shoot to make them the best they can be.
On a sad note, I lost a friend and competitor to the coronavirus in December. You could always find Bobby Bolden at the Cardinal Center shoots ever year with his dog Casino. I will miss our colorful conversations. If you knew Bobby, he pulled no punches and told it like it was. You will be missed, my friend.
Weather will be warming up soon, and the shooting season will start. Everyone, please be safe in your travels, and we will see you at the shoots.
Happy Valentine’s Day to all of you lovely trapshooters. Wishing you a heart-filled day, love and forgiveness.
Great news to report. Paul Becker and John Reeb will be inducted at the 16th annual Hall of Fame banquet. Congrats to you two. Look for more information on attending the banquet.
If there is anything that makes me happy, that would be shooting. How about you? Do you think about the next shoot? I do, and I have an answer for you. How about shooting at the Spring Grand in Tucson? If you have never been there, you should come and see what the targets are like. I hope to see you there.
I was on the shuttle to my house coming home from a shoot. A gentleman in front of me was carrying on a conversation with me. He was on the way home from seeing his two-month-old grandson. His grandson has a rare form of cancer, and he won’t make it to Christmas. My heart felt for the family, what they would be going through.
The point I want to get across is please cherish every moment of every day. Family and your trapshooting family needs you.
There is not much of anything to report other than a few local Lewis shoots. Attend these shoots; they are a great way to stay in shape for the 2021 shooting season. Staying in shape is important, and most of all, you are supporting the clubs.
Speaking about smaller local shoots. I attended a small shoot up in Ladysmith, WI, and I had a great time with folks I knew but also made new friends with the local shooters. These fun weekend up-north winter shoots are what help us to be happy with the winter blues. A big thank you to the volunteers who worked hard.
I can’t wait to see you on the shooting line. Remember to help get the club you are a member of up and going for the season. Volunteer to get the club open or ready to open. We all can do our part to help out.
Let me know if you have any news to report by e-mailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Shooters ask me, “Why are you writing the Delegate article?” My response is always the same. I get to go to more shoots and travel more places, so great job for me.
Sandra Jo Jack
for ATA Delegate Kevin Doerring
Hello from the Atlantic Provinces. Attention, gun club managers, Amber Sizemore is the new ATA Gun Club Liaison and is available to help you with your ATA gun club-related matters. Amber’s contact info can be found on the ATA’s webpage www.shootata.com.
The ATA recently sent all gun clubs a certificate showing your registered gun club name and ATA gun club number. This info is used for all ATA reporting. Please contact Amber if you haven’t received your club’s certificate.
Gun cub managers can also access helpful resources on the ATA’s webpage through the Gun Club Login page. You can use this feature to update your club’s information, upload shoot programs and trophy reports, view and print shooter average cards for classification purposes, and access all the ATA reports and forms to help with your registered shoots. If you’re not already submitting scores electronically or need a refresher, training information is also available on the Gun Club Login page.
The 2021 calendar-year Atlantic Provinces ATA Provincial Shoot is scheduled to return to the Highland GC near Yarmouth, NS, Sept. 2-5. There’s still much uncertainty with regards to what the next few months will bring, but we are cautiously optimistic that we will have a traditional one-club shoot. However, if COVID-19 restrictions are still in place, we will consider having another satellite shoot. Stay tuned to our website for a shoot program and more details in the coming months.
Just a reminder to help support ATA gun clubs by purchasing a ticket for the 2021 ATA Gun Club Fund Gun Raffle. Tickets are $20 U.S., and proceeds go back to ATA gun clubs through an application process. Successful clubs will receive a grant for club improvements, equipment upgrades or any other initiative that will help promote trapshooting at their club. I have a limited number of tickets available, so reach out to me to get your ticket. Tickets are also available through the ATA office and other state and provincial Delegates.
For more information on the Atlantic Provinces Trapshooting Association, feel free to contact me at email@example.com or visit shootatlantic.com.
Due to the lockdown in some states, and openings in others, we were told by some governors to limit the size of family gatherings to five to 10 individuals. Hopefully, with the coming vaccines, by this time next year, this pandemic will be a thing of the past.
Gun clubs in the north and south of the Garden State had food, new toy or clothing drives to benefit the less fortunate folks in their areas. The trapshooting community here in New Jersey, and most likely throughout the country, is there to help others when asked to do so during this time of strife. I am glad to report the following (in alphabetical order).
The North Jersey CTC in Fairfield held their annual food drive. Ten target boxes of food were collected from the membership and donated to St. Thomas More Catholic Church in Fairfield. Besides the food, a Jeep filled to the roof with toys plus $300 in cash were donated to the U.S. Marines’ Toys for Tots.
The Pine Belt SC in Shamong had a children’s coat drive. Club president Jeff Slimm, in conjunction with the Monroe Police Department, engineered the project. The drive was advertised on the club’s Facebook page. More than 100 children’s coats were collected during the weeklong drive, and Jeff commented that 50% of the coats donated were purchased new by the shooters just so they could be donated. New toys as well as money were also collected and donated to the Monroe Police Department. The local Shamong/Tabernacle Facebook page covered what was going on in their town, and among the people’s comments were, “Pine Belt is the greatest neighbor ever! Good people doing good things.” Another person wrote, “Just shows what kind of people sportsmen are.” Well done, guys; congratulations!
The Pine Valley TC in Pine Hill had their annual food and new toy drive. John Wilson has overseen this effort for the last five years and should be immensely proud. The Pine Hill School District, which ran through the Pine Hill Police Department, again this year benefitted from the generosity of trapshooters. Paul Dimeglio, club president, reported that the members and the club donated over 500 toys and non-perishable food items for the kids. Pine Valley TC donated an additional $250 for toys and $200 for the Pine Hill Police Department’s K-9 Unit.
What a tremendous effort by the shooters who donated to their respective clubs’ efforts!
February is a slow registered trapshooting month throughout the state, so it is imperative that you try to shoot some practice targets during the cold winter months. Besides, it will be nice for you to shoot with your friends.
Following is the biography of one of the 2021 New Jersey Hall of Fame inductees, Abram (Abe) Suydam Sr. I first met Abe back in 1980 when I returned to registered trapshooting. I would like to thank Abe’s grandson Ryck and granddaughter Robin Suydam plus fellow trapshooters Joe Marsala and Kay Ohye for all their input when writing this piece.
Abe was born on the family farm in Somerset in 1901. The farm has been in the Suydam family since 1713 and is currently run by Abe’s grandchildren Robin and Ryck. Growing up, Abe’s siblings were a sister Mary and two brothers, Mathew and Henry. He attended The George School, a boarding school in Doylestown, PA. After graduation he returned to work the farm for and with his dad Mathew. In 1929, at the age of 28, he married Eunice Morgan and had two children, a boy, Abram Jr., and daughter Ann.
Abe was a very frugal person, and that carried throughout his life. He attended “short courses” at Rutgers University on farming. He prided himself on pasture management, and Rutgers professors would bring their students to his farm to show them how what they were teaching in the classroom was being practiced at the Suydam farm. Over the years, cattle were always a part of the family farm, supplying milk, cheese and meat for the table. The Holstein variety had been a staple on the farm and through Abe’s leadership, switched over to the Brown Swiss variety, which produced a higher quality and volume of milk each day. In 1960 the Suydam farm won the title of most productive herd in the nation. Abe would say that the family farm provided everything they needed to live, and they only needed to buy cornflakes for breakfast.
Prior to joining the ATA in 1959, Abe was an expert rifle and pistol shooter. Being way familiar with rifle ammo and reloading match-grade ammo, he would use a 50-caliber Army issue metal container to carry his shotgun ammo on the trapline. No leather for Abe!
In 1951 son Abram Jr. graduated from Rutgers University with a major in animal husbandry. In 1954 he was discharged from the Air Force, where he served as a radar technician and instructor north of the DMZ in Korea. He returned to the family farm, managing the 300-acre facility.
With his son taking on the responsibility of running the homestead, it freed up Abram Sr. to take up a new hobby: trapshooting. Abe started registered shooting in the 1960 target year, at the age of 58, and by 1965 he was familiar with the good shooters at the time, where to compete, what guns were better than others, and how to reload consistently factory spec shotshells. What a better teacher to take under his wing, a new shooter by the name of Kay Ohye, who loved the sport as much as he did.
They became fast friends, and Abe would bring Kay to his farm to shoot clay targets when they could and travel to various gun clubs in the area to compete. On one occasion, Abe told Kay to bring his rifle to the farm to shoot at some paper targets. Kay agreed and brought his best rifle. When he arrived, he saw the set-up Abe had in front of him on the bench. A top-of-the-line rifle with a massive scope. Abe asked Kay if he’d like to shoot for 10 cents a point at the target 200 yards away. Kay, being no dummy, declined. Abe proceeded to put his three shots in the 10-ring on the target.
The first time Kay picked up Abe to go shooting, Abe had three empty target boxes, along with all his shooting stuff, so Kay asked him what the empty boxes were for. Abe replied that they were for the wads that were lying in the field downrange of the traphouse that they were going to pick up and re-use. Kay said he was driving and was not going to help, so Abe was on his own. Abe was very frugal and had his own washing machine for the wads he picked up (Eunice would not let him use the family washing machine to clean his wads). If a shotshell’s crimp was too low, Abe would just drip some candle wax in to close the crimp. Abe’s rib came loose on his Winchester Model 12, and he used the fine-gauge wire ties that we use today to secure the plastic bag for produce at the supermarket, with the paper removed, to secure the rib.
Back in the 1980s, on a Saturday or Sunday at the Troy Meadow TC in Parsippany, it would be common to see Abe with his frequent squadmates Joe Marsala, Baskum Holland, Frank Wirth and George Griggs. It was not uncommon for them to shoot 400 to 500 registered singles each day. He would never beat his chest as to how well he shot. He would usually walk off the line with a long face. When asked how he did, he would say he missed one. If he broke the 100, he would complain that he’d chipped a couple!
Abe would make the occasional trip out to Vandalia, OH, in August. His first Grand trophy was in 1969, and in the subsequent years he won 11 others. His Eastern Zone trophies total four, New Jersey State Shoots generated three, and Pennsylvania State Shoots generated another 12, besides all the other awards he won at small shoots. He would say that he enjoyed beating his fellow contestants with his Model 12 while they used the more expensive shotguns. He also liked when in his 90s, he would beat the younger 70-year-olds in the senior vet category.
The 1977 New Jersey State Shoot was held in Abe’s honor. He shot at more registered targets than anyone else in the state. In 1985 he registered 38,000 targets. By 1990, Abe reached the Half Million Club in singles. When he retired from shooting, he had registered 580,400 singles targets, putting him No. 3 in the ATA in 1995. Today Abe’s singles target count ranks seventh. Besides singles, he registered 53,400 handicap and 4,250 doubles targets for a total of 638,050 registered targets.
In 2000 Eunice, his wife of 71 years, died, and in 2001, at the age of 100, Abram passed away, ending a most productive shooting career and a very productive work ethic which he passed on to his descendants running the family farm.
We will be inducting Abe posthumously, along with our second New Jersey Hall of Fame nominee Marc Invidiato June 5 at 4 p.m. in Pine Belt’s clubhouse during the state shoot. Marc’s biography is planned for the March issue of Trap & Field.
NJSTA is still looking for a second vice president and a secretary for the organization. Any New Jersey resident is qualified to fill these posts. Please use my contact information below if interested.
If you have an idea for an article or just a question, I can be reached at 732-546-7910 or by firstname.lastname@example.org.
Greetings from Ontario, Canada! Every ATA President has input into the cover of the ATA Grand programs, etc. Over the period of time I have sat on the Executive Committee, I have witnessed some very creative designs. Wayne Morris’ sailing boat, typical of Rhode Island; John Burke’s windmill against a cattle ranch background, all common in Nebraska; Jim Jones’ head frame for an underground mine (all within a half mile of the Continental Divide); Terry Dean’s horses, emblematic of Kentucky’s best; and last year Mike Herman’s four fighter jets (Mike is an Air Force veteran) and bucking bronco cast against the stars and stripes, quite fitting of his state of Colorado.
So what is an ATA President who hails from Ontario, Canada, to do?
After a lot of reflection, I decided that Griggsy, our Australian Shepherd, would play a prominent role. There are a number of reasons for this. Our family had more than three decades of yellow labs, and our Chester had to be put down at age 14. As everyone who has experienced the loss of a treasured pet, friend and companion knows, it takes time to grieve and mend. In 2012, after being without a canine best friend for more than three years, I really missed a dog’s companionship. My wife, although fond of dogs and cats, needed some time to recover from the constant cleaning and vacuuming of dog hairs. She encouraged me to take one of our cats with me if I wanted company and she couldn’t attend herself. Imagine this, me attending the Great Lakes Grand in Mason, MI, with my trailer and a cat. Tilly (our feline tabby) was skittish and one night escaped the trailer and darted from one hiding place to another, up and down trees—a shadow that was impossible to corral. Many of my friends lamented—time for me to get a dog.
So at the 2012 Grand American in Sparta, my wife and I were staying at a motel in nearby Chester, IL. We were having breakfast one morning when we overheard a waitress at a nearby table telling her patrons that she had some puppies still available from a recent litter. My wife cautioned me, “You know if you go and see a puppy, you’ll be getting it.” I wasn’t so sure, but alas, when we went to the Griggs cattle ranch to see the puppies, the inevitable happened. As we waited in the car for the rancher to emerge, lo and behold a puppy came tearing around the corner of the house and stopped in her tracks as she scrutinized us. Her lopsided ears were in the air as she continued to stare. After what seemed like an eternity, this adorable little dog seemed resigned to a new opportunity, as if to say, “I think I’ll go to Canada.” And to Canada Griggsy came. Ever since this little warrior, if she is not herding cats at the Shaw house, is navigating on every excursion and just loves shooters, shooting clubs and all the people she meets on both sides of the border. When Terry Dean was President, he invited Griggsy to join the ATA Executive Committee in our annual photo. Griggsy is a good ambassador of our sport and our human and canine friends on both sides of the border.
So now you know why Griggsy will play a symbolic role in the 2021 logo. I hope you enjoy our little dual doggie.