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Vermilion Range Trap Club gets $18,400 DNR Shooting Range Grant

The Vermilion Range Trap Club in Winton has been awarded a matching grant from the State of Minnesota in the amount of $18,400.

The grant is a result of the commitment by MNDNR for safe shooting opportunities and generous community support.

“The money will be used to purchase several new skeet target throwers, one trap target thrower and a target storage unit,” said VRTC club president Dan Johnson. “The throwers will provide dependable shooting and target storage will reduce shooting costs.”

VRTC is located in Winton on the Old Winton Road just below the Winton water tower near the Longbranch.

The club exists to provide safe shooting opportunities for anyone in the area and is open to the general public.

Shooting venues include trap, skeet, and a small sporting clays (sporting ducks) course. Trap and skeet shooting happens on Sunday afternoons at 1 p.m. until about 4 p.m. and Wednesday evenings after 5 p.m. until dusk.

The 25 target sporting clays course starts in late August through most of September, a good tune up for hunting season, and it is fun.

Trap is a 25 shot shooting game where clay targets are thrown away from the shooter at a variety of angles. Skeet, also a 25 target close range sport, where one and two clay targets are  thrown at close ranges.

This is the perfect way to master and perfect wing shooting skills. Sporting clays often referred to as golf with a shotgun replicates hunting situations. Each course is different as a squad of shooters travel from station to station to experience unique shooting situations. “Sporting ducks” at VRTC offers rising targets, overhead duck shots, point blank woodcock shots, long range goose shots and flushing grouse.

Memberships are available although not required and shooting is open to everyone.

Trap is usually shot with a full or modified choke. Skeet and sporting ducks with a skeet or cylinder choke. Target loads using shot size of 7½, 8 or 9 are required for safety. Ear protection and eye protection are also required. Reservations are not needed.

VRTC has been in existence for over 50 years in the same location. It is the home of the Vermilion College trap team. It has also been a site for youth gun safety, Boy Scout merit Badges, and group outings. The charcoal grill gets used frequently.

The club hosts several shooting events such as the Spoonbill Challenge against neighboring clubs, the Cold Turkey Shoot in November, and other safe shooting fun. This is a good place for folks to gather who enjoy the outdoors and introduce kids to safe shooting.

“Drive by, stop by to watch, or come in for a cold can of pop and meet the shooters,” said Johnson. “We likely have many things in common. It’s fun and we’d love to meet you!”

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