Dawn Rye | Writer
During last week’s commissioners meeting, a motion was made to allow Game, Fish & Parks Game Warden Brian Humphrey to start preparing the shooting range for the high school trap shooting teams.
Humphrey explained the trap range would be at the north end of the gravel pit on old SD Hwy 44. He said Parker resident Eric Meyer approached the school board members to receive approval to start a trap team through the school. He explained Aaron Sherard and his dad received the school’s approval from Hurley and Viborg to start a trap shooting team down there as well.
Humphrey noted he spoke with Turner County Highway Superintendent Kent Austin about creating a trail along the west fence. He believes he can talk Game, Fish & Parks into placing a fence to keep the traffic from driving into the gravel pit were it is restricted.
Humphrey said the original plan was to build a trap house, but with the high water conditions, the next step is to purchase a trailer and mount the trap thrower on the trailer. He noted Game, Fish & Parks would pay for a storage shed in Parker to store clay targets and shells.
He noted the goal for teams to start trap shooting is Thursday, April 2. Humphrey explained kids will not be able to bring their guns to school, instead students will be required to go home and then bring their guns to the range.
Humphrey said the state Hunt Safe Coordinators agreed to purchase the trailer, trap thrower and the generator.
Commissioner Mick Miller asked how many kids would be on a team?
Humphrey explained that if Parker had 60 students and Viborg/Hurley had 20 on their team, the teams would be matched up with schools of a similar team size. He explained the trap shooting age is eighth – 12th grade for Parker.
Humphrey said the South Dakota High School Trap Association would allow sixth– 12th grade. He explained when the students sign up, they would pay a $35.00 registration fee that covers the registration and insurance. He said donations were made by Game, Fish & Parks to purchase the shells and they are asking for donations from the public to help purchase targets.
Miller asked if there are qualifications to be a trap shooting coach?
Humphrey said no, but they are required to take a safety test with the head coach and can be certified for no cost. Each additional coach qualification is $50.00.
He noted that students can play football and basketball all through high school, however, trap shooting is a life skill that any age can do.