WANTING TO JOIN?
WHAT TO EXPECT AND WHAT YOU WILL NEED IF YOU JOIN OUR CLUB
First and foremost, we try to make sure EVERYONE in our club has a good time and enjoys what we do as a club. We try to run a VERY CLEAN and WELL RAN club. We strive to keep our "Shooting Family" atmosphere and try to keep everyone updated and involved. We like to think that we accomplish this goal since the majority of our shooters return to our club every year and our club is growing like crazy.
We have this website and our private Members pages on here where we will send out information. We also have a group chat app as well where we keep in contact and try to update everyone on what is going on and any current events.
At this time, there is a ONE TIME $300 registration fee. This covers all of your jersey attire AND all targets for the ENTIRE YEAR. This fee is subject to change in the future but will be discussed as a club. Registration opens every year towards the end of August and the new season begins in September. When you pay your fee to the State 4-H Office to join 4-H, you will be in our club for a year until the next August. The registration fee to the State is the only registration fee you will pay as of now, and all of the targets that your child will shoot are free. We fund our club by holding our fundraiser shoot every year, and if our shoot continues to be a success, then we will continue status quo.
We usually have a group practice at least once a week, and as the spring and summer come, we may have a practice or two during the week. We will put information out on our group chat and our calendar as to when the practices are. You are more than welcome to go practice at any time and at any venue of your choice but you are responsible for any costs that come with that. We only cover target costs at our practice fields.
Our club is a bit different than other sports. This is an individual sport 99.9% of the time. You will enter events and attend practice at your leisure and there will never be a consequence for not shooting an event or coming to a practice. We do keep track though as to who comes to practice and who shoots in events. In our end of the year party, we acknowledge some of these shooters with awards and prizes. But there is NO REQUIREMENT to attend any practice, and there is NO REQUIREMENT to attend any shooting event. Your child will get out of the club, what they put into the club. The more they practice, they better they will get. The more shoots they attend, the more they will understand the pressure of competition and excel. If they choose not to practice, that is no problem at all. They will still be able to compete and come when they can. They need to understand that their progress will be slower than other shooters who come often and put in the time and work to get better.
Each year we get new sublimated jerseys and hoodies made for our team and coaches. You may have seen them in our team photos on Facebook. There will be a cost for these items, but with the registration fee, the jersey will be covered by the club. We have hats made as well and every new shooter gets one for free. Parents and extended family can also purchase jerseys, hoodies, and hats as well if they like at any time at the cost of the attire. There is no "up-charge" on these items.
This sport has the possibility to be expensive, but there is no other sport like it. This sport pushes and allows the kids to mature a bit faster as they will be held to standards and safety requirements. We at the Barbers Hill 4-H Shooting Team, believe in "old school" values, and we hold our team accountable. There will always be yes mam's and no mam's, yes sir's and no sir's given to any and all adults. They will learn to always greet everyone with a handshake and a smile. We have one of the biggest clubs in the State and we want to maintain a good reputation with the other clubs we are friends with. You will soon learn that all 4-H Shooting Teams in the state are one "big family". We talk to each other often, and we have an understanding that we all take care of each other.
On this page, we are going to provide you with the basics of what you will need, and what you will have to spend, so that you know what to expect. We do not want there to be any surprises. If you have hunted doves, ducks, geese, or quail, or shot clay targets before, then you probably have some knowledge as to what you will need or use if you join our club. If you are new to this sport, then you may have no idea what you will need or use, which is not a problem what so ever.
We want to make sure that you have a good understanding of what you will need when you join our 4-H club and what to expect. We will try to break down each item and give you an estimate of cost if applicable for that item.
BREAKDOWN OF WHAT YOU WILL NEED
When you join our club, these are the items you will need to get started.
1. A shotgun
2. Shotgun Shells
3. Eye Protection
4. Ear Protection
5. A vest or shell pouch
6. Knowledge of expenses
8. Willingness to help out
We will try to explain each one of these items in detail so you have a clear understanding of what you need and why you need it.
WHAT TYPE AND WHAT GAUGE SHOTGUN DO I NEED?
Cost for a brand new shotgun: $350 to $10,000 or more
Please do not let that scare you off. We do not recommend buying a $10,000 shotgun, just stating that there are options out there to spend that much. If grandpa or dad has a shotgun they can use, they are more than welcome to bring it out.
There are several different makes and model shotguns and several differnet gauges that they come in. There is no requirement to shoot one certain type or one certain gauge. This will be a brief overview of the different types of shotguns and what works best. If you are a new to this sport, there is no reason to go out and buy a really expensive shotgun when your unsure about your child's future in the sport.
We will not go over the different types of makes or brands right now. That is merely your preference. If you have a question about a make or brand, you can do some research on the shotgun in question, or contact us and we can give you our suggestion or opinion. There are some that are made a little better than others, but that can also lead to a more expensive purchase, so research is important.
There are 5 different types of shotguns you commonly see.
1. Single Shot
2. Side by Side
5. Over and Under
The first two, the single shot and side by side, are not recommended for what we do.
The third option, the Pump shotgun, can be used, but not fully recommended. With having to "pump" the shotgun, it slows the shooter down at times and throws in a motor skill movement that can hinder the shooters transition ability when they learn to shoot "pairs", and more than one target is thrown.
The last two, the Semi-Auto and Over and Under, will be what you will want to have in order to be as successful as possible in this sport. The Semi-Auto will reload the shotgun after the first shot with no effort from the shooter. The Over and Under will automatically shoot the first barrel and then the second barrel with no effort from the shooter. This will allow the shooter to stay smooth and on target better
Probably the most important thing to first think about is "gun fit" and how the gun will fit your child. A small child cannot shoot a full size shotgun. It will be too big for him/her and they will not be able to handle the length and weight. If you can find a youth model, that is a start, or if you don't mind cutting the stock down to fit your child, that is another consideration. The shooter must be able to shoot where he is looking, so we want to achieve as close to a proper fit as possible.
The Semi-Auto is typically known to be a little bit lighter and have slightly less recoil than an Over and Under. But sometimes a really light shotgun can have a lot of recoil as well. If that were the case, that could make the Semi-Auto recoil, not much less than an Over and Under.
We submit that you look at several different options if you can. We usually have a few different guns they can try to shoot at their first practice. That is not always the case and a guarantee though. We can usually make that happen, we just have to try and coordinate it.
There are two popular gauges in the 4-H world.
20 Gauge and 12 Gauge
If your child can handle it, we would like for them to at least be able to shoot a 20 guage which is smaller than a 12 gauge. Usually 6th-7th grade and under shooters start off with a 20 gauge if they have not shot before. If they cannot handle it, a .410 gauge will work, but we need to try and get them into a 20 gauge as soon as they can.
Most of the older kids shoot a 12 gauge, and even quite a few of the younger kids shoot a 12 gauge. There is no requirement to shoot one or the other, it is merely a personal preference and what they can handle. We can discuss this more if you need help.
Cost for Shells is on average: $5.50-$6.00 a box or $55-$60 a case (10 boxes)
There is not a specific brand, speed, or size shotgun shell that you are limited to. Our shooters shoot a wide variety of different shells. When you become a member of our club, you can look under our "Members" pages and find out much more information we have on there about shotgun shells.
As a general rule for people interested in our club, we recommend starting off with a shotgun shell that is no faster than 1200-1250 fps (feet per second). We recommend you starting off with #8 shot size. You cannot shoot any shot size larger than 7 1/2 and anything smaller than #9. You will see this information on the top or the side of the box of shotgun shells.
We get asked all of the time, "How many shells will my child need?". That is a very hard question to answer because we do not know how much your child wants to shoot and how eager they are to get out and get better. A basic recommendation is to plan on them shooting around 4 boxes of shells per practice. Sometimes they may shoot more and sometimes they may shoot less. There is a lot of variables that come into play with the child's age, stature, and desire to shoot.
EYE AND EAR PROTECTION
Cost for ear protection: $0.50 to $200 or more.
Cost for eye protection: $5.00 to $1,000 or more
Again, there is no need to go out and spend a ton on these items starting out. Just a range that we want to provide you.
When your child comes out to shoot, they will need both EYE and EAR protection, and it is a requirement. When they are actively shooting, each shooter must have some type of eye and ear protection. It does not matter what brand or what kind, but they will not be allowed to shoot at any practice or competition without both.
You can find both at just about any major sporting goods store. As your child gets more into the sport, you can start to look at higher quality items in both categories.
There are different colored shooting glasses, or products that come with an assortment of lenses, that make the clay targets stand out more if you would like to find something like that. Again, it does not matter what kind they use, but they must have it.
SHOOTING VEST OR SHELL POUCH
Cost for Shooting Vest: $20 to $300
Cost for Shell Pouch: $10 to $200
Your child will need a shooting vest or a shell pouch to carry their shells in while they are shooting. There is no "which is better", it is again, just a preference. Some start with a shooting vest and switch to a shell pouch and vise versa. As we have stated with the other items above, we would not recommend spending a lot of money on these items at first. Let you child show you that they are dedicated to the sport and want to continue before you go out and spend the money.
KNOWLEDGE OF EXPENSES, PATIENCE, AND WILLINGNESS TO HELP OUT
These last few items are for more of the internal workings and dealings with the club as parents. We have given you a brief look at the expense side of this sport. Keep in mind that there are also entry fees to enter the shooting events your child will attend, but again, there is NO REQUIREMENT to attend any. When you and your child decide they are ready to try and attend one, you are more than welcome to give it a shot.
We ask that you be patient with the managers and the coaches. Please understand that all of them have VOLUNTEERED their time and energy to make this club what it is. They get nothing back besides seeing a group of happy kids and parents. For them, this is all they need to keep doing what they do. So please be patient with them. There will be times where things get a little hectic and busy. With that being said, any new family member can be a volunteer and we encourage that. WE NEED VOLUNTEERS. It costs $5 for a background check and you will sign up on 4-H connect the same way you did your child. There are also coaching classes that you can attend with no experience needed. We can always use more coaches to help hold practices and other events, and need more coaches to help run our club in the future. We will post when coaches classes become available.
The last thing that we ask is that you help out when needed. If you get to practice early, please help the coach or coaches out if they need help loading machines. We have a great group of established parents and we hope that you will want to be a part of our group. Each year we will ask you to look for sponsors for our big Scholarship Event, and ask you to help sell raffle tickets. The day of our shoot, we may ask you to help work a booth or a table for a little bit as well, but this is all that we ask of you. We are all one big family and we take care of each other, so please join us in keeping that tradition.