PIASA – The Southwestern High School trap and skeet teams are receiving robust support from the athletic department, the school, and the community, Southwestern's head coach Tim Arnold said.

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Southwestern Athletic Director Brian Hanslow is "fully supportive of the team and the sport," the coach said.

The teams participate in competition shoots held at Brittany Shooting Park in Bunker Hill.

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"We are participating in the Illinois State High School Clay Target League," Arnold said. "The parent organization is the USA Clay Target League."

Arnold highlighted the role of the Friends of NRA (FNRA), a volunteer-driven fundraising program under the NRA Foundation, in supporting youth shooting programs nationwide. The Bluff City Chapter of the FNRA, led by Sherry Cowan, hosts an annual fundraising event at the Alton-Wood River Sportsmen's Club in Godfrey.

"I completed a FNRA grant application in late 2023 for the 2024 season," Arnold said. "FNRA generously awarded the Southwestern Trap & Skeet Team almost 14,000 rounds of target loads that will be used in 2024. This was nearly enough rounds to support the weekly competition shoots for trap and skeet."

Arnold noted that while parents and students are responsible for range fees, team uniforms, ammunition, firearms, travel costs, and event fees, the FNRA grant has provided significant financial relief for the team.

"We're hopeful to gain additional grants and sponsorships for the fall 2024 and spring 2025 seasons," Arnold said. "As the costs are significant, we're hoping additional support will help introduce new shooters and parents to the sport of clay shooting."

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