Posts Tagged ‘MidwayUSA’
Thursday, July 19th, 2012
The Nobles County Pheasants Forever chapter has a longstanding history of habitat protection, with more than 2,000 acres in the southwestern Minnesota county protected as habitat and open for public hunting because of land purchases the chapter has participated in. Now the chapter is expanding its efforts in youth conservation education under Pheasants Forever’s new “Adopt-A-Team” program.
Under the Adopt-A-Team program, a Pheasants Forever (or Quail Forever) chapter takes a local shooting team under its wing. The reason is simple – a young person with an interest in shooting is likely to have an interest in hunting and conservation, and an interest in Pheasants Forever’s wildlife habitat conservation mission. And the shooting sports are growing in popularity with youngsters. In Minnesota, for example, there were just 54 kids from three schools in the Minnesota State High School Clay Target League in 2008; this year, 1,500 kids from 100 schools shot clay pigeons. In Iowa, the number of boys and girls participating in shooting sports increased 28 percent in 2012 versus 2011, with nearly 1,800 shooters and 300 volunteer coaches registered with the state’s Department of Natural Resources.
The Nobles County Pheasants Forever chapter adopted the local Worthington Trojans High School Trap Team, making a $1,000 contribution to Pheasants Forever’s FOREVER Shooting Sports Endowment. Each chapter that does this receives a package of five Remington guns, which are given to the selected shooting team for them to raffle off in the hopes of raising at least $5,000. As part of the endowment, Larry and Brenda Potterfield of MidwayUSA match three-to-one whatever each team raises ($5,000 becomes $20,000), and teams are allowed to draw up to 5 percent from their fund annually to cover expenses like uniforms, ammo, clay birds, etc.
Instead of raising just $5,000, the Worthington team went door to door and business to business in their community, raising donations and selling tickets for the raffle. When the last ticket was sold, the team notified John Linquist, Pheasants Forever’s FOREVER Shooting Sports National Coordinator, that they had raised more than $18,000. With the generous Potterfield match, the team will have a trust deposit of over $72,000, meaning it can draw more than $3,500 per year to keep the team functioning.
Considering the strong nature of the local Pheasants Forever chapter, it’s no surprise the high school team rolled up their blaze orange sleeves and set to work raising money to ensure the program continues not only through their graduation, but the next generation’s.