State shoot provides positive results for youth

The 2016 Michigan 4-H Shooting Sports Tournament drew a large number of participants and continues to build on positive youth development for participants.

The 2016 Michigan 4-H Shooting Sports State Tournament took place Aug. 6 at the Centerline of Calhoun County near Bellevue, Michigan. There were 507 registered participants in the disciplines of 3D archery, target archery, shotgun (trap and skeet), rifle (BB, pellet and .22) and muzzleloader.

The Michigan 4-H Shooting Sports Tournament is an opportunity for youth participants to showcase their skills and talents in shooting sports disciplines within their appropriate category and division. To participate in the “state shoot,” competitors need to have participated in a competitive shoot prior to the state shoot in that year. This competition can be at a county or regional shoot, a fair or club level. Counties may only have a limited number of participants, so each county determines how youth qualify for participation at the state tournament.

4-H youth from counties throughout Michigan travelled to compete at this year’s event. The day was forecast to be sunny, dry and hot and the weather did not disappoint. Conditions were perfect for competitive shooting and the camaraderie that comes with youth shooting sports. There were lots of excited and nervous shooters along with thousands of spectators there to support and cheer for their favorite 4-H shooting sports competitor. Medals were awarded to the top three finishers along with awards for the top team finisher in each event. Please visit the Michigan 4-H Shooting Sports Tournament website to view all results.

Shooting sports competitorsWhile the day had its winners, the event itself provided a great hands-on learning experience in competitive shooting for all youth involved. Participants arrived with high expectations, not only for how they would score, but also for the friendships they would make and the experience they would gain helping them become better shooters. Many competitors shot their personal best. Others hoped they would have done better. All participants left with a sense of accomplishment knowing they are part of a youth development program that helps them build strong character traits and life skills.

Next year’s tournament will again be held at Centerline of Calhoun County and will be held within a two week window as this year’s date. Be sure to regularly check Michigan State University Extension’s 4-H Shooting Sports website for updates about exact time and location for the 2017 state shoot.

The Michigan 4-H Shooting Sports Board of Directors, state tournament planning team and training team are very excited to offer this opportunity to 4-H youth annually. Many thanks go out to the numerous volunteers who provided assistance at the event and to those who support and provide leadership for local 4-H Shooting Sports Clubs. The Michigan 4-H Shooting Sports program and tournament are an excellent example of how MSU Extension youth programs help youth be the best they can be.

MSU Extension encourages participation in new experiences that are safe and expose youth to science involvement with 4-H Science: Asking Questions and Discovering Answers.

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