I'm getting up on my soapbox again mainly because I'm too much of a hick to have a pedestal. OK, it's really an old milk crate, but I didn't steal it, honest.
This past weekend from dawn to dusk I was involved in the county 4-H Shooting Sports competition where my son Cole competed. In between shuttling him I capped muzzleloaders, helped with the archery range and even cleaned up after the potluck awards ceremony. Several dozen kids participated in archery, air gun, .22, trap and outdoor skills. In the end everyone either received a ribbon or the opportunity to pick out a great outdoor prize for their involvement. In short, everyone won.
You and I won as well. How? These kids are receiving instruction on proper firearm handling, plus insight on the fun of shooting sports. The next step for many is purchasing a hunting license and that means more hunters to carry on to the next generation, plus future funding for our wildlife resources.
Here's my soapbox speech. I've said it before and here it is again. If you have 4-H in your community get your kids involved. It's more than shooting. It's animal care, crafts, baking, technology, engineering, agriculture, citizenship and many other facets. It's likely you can get hooked up with 4-H since there are 3,000 offices across the country and they are linked to 106 of the Land Grant Universities scattered across the nation. It's a service provided through the Department of Agriculture and I believe taxpayer money well spent. Where else are kids going to learn about where meat comes from and how to shoot a firearm? It's hardly happening in the schools any more except in a negative tone.
This year our family has projects in shooting, cats, hogs, horses, crafts, baking and citizenship. I'm sure I'm missing something, but my wife is traveling so I'm relying on my memory, not her family-focused savvy.
That's it. That's all I have, but if you want your kids to have more than just a summer baseball experience, try 4-H. Now I'm getting off this old milk crate before I fall and break something that could screw up my fall hunting season.
Cough, cough! Did I hit it?