For 37 years, the Capitol City Rifle and Pistol Club has been home to an extremely successful program devoted to teaching children the discipline, skill and enjoyment of participating in the sport of competitive shooting.
When my son was young, he did not participate as a team athlete at his school.
He started shooting under the tutelage of a few knowledgeable and competent adult club members who served as coaches.
This program includes the Cony and Gardiner High School rifle teams.
My daughter followed in his footsteps. Shooting competitively has become her high school sport.
Because of the exceptional training and guidance she has received from Julian Beale and the other volunteer coaches and the support of the senior members of the Capitol City Club, she has participated in national matches both in Ohio and at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado.
The National Rifle Association and USA Shooting have recognized the Junior Program as one of the top in the country.
One would think that such a successful program would be a source of pride for the leaders of the Capitol City Club.
On the contrary, the executive committee recently voted to discontinue the club’s relationship with the Junior Program and has barred the young people from practicing, learning or competing at the club’s facility.
At the same time, the committee has not kept the general membership informed about their decision to bring this program to a close.
I hope other members of the club agree that it is worth it to make a few personal sacrifices so that these young people can participate in this wonderful program. These children are our future.
Members of the club who are as upset about the junior shooters being shut out as I am should let their voice be heard.