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Rotary to host clay shoot

Robert Hardy shoots at a target during last year’s first Benefit Clay Shoot.

Robert Hardy shoots at a target during last year’s first Benefit Clay Shoot.

Last year, the Atmore Rotary Club hosted its first “benefit clay shoot,” and this year organizers hope the event will be even bigger and better.

The second annual Atmore Rotary Benefit Clay Shoot will be Saturday, starting at 8 a.m. at Bushy Creek Clays, located at 22505 Will Vaughn Road in Perdido. All benefits will support the Rotary Club’s various community service projects throughout the year.

Registration will begin at 8 a.m., and there will be a safety meeting at 9 a.m. A shotgun start will begin the event at 9:30 a.m., and lunch and awards will follow at the conclusion of the competition.

Although many teams have already signed up, the Rotary Club will accept registrations up until the day of the event. The cost is $500 per team, or $125 per shooter. Shells are not included, and each shooter should bring at least 110 shells. Eye and ear protection must be worn.

Allen Walston, chairman of the Rotary Club’s clay shoot committee, said that the club was unsure how successful the shoot would be in its inaugural year.

“We were not making much money on the Fiddlers’ Convention, so we decided to try something different,” he said. “I thought it went very well. It was something new and unique for our area, and we got a lot of positive feedback from the participants last year.”

During the shooting competition, teams of four shooters will each take aim at a total of 100 targets over 14 stations. Each shooter will shoot six to eight targets at each station, and a “hit” is counted whenever the target is hit by the shell — it does not necessarily have to be destroyed.

After all teams have finished their round, the scores for each team will be tallied, and the team with the highest number of hit targets will win the event. There will be trophies presented to the first, second and third place teams, and there will also be awards for the top overall male and female shooter.

Carts are limited and must be reserved on a first-come, first-serve basis. Participants may bring golf carts or utility vehicles with side-by-side seating, but they cannot use a vehicle that required a rider to straddle the seat.

Walston said that Gary Cox, the owner of Bushy Creek Clays, has been very supportive, in allowing the club to hold its fundraiser at the Perdido shooting range once again.

“I first found out about Bushy Creek Clays when a friend invited me to go shooting out there,” Walston said. “I thought it would be a great place for our club to hold an event. Gary has been very supportive and helpful, and very welcoming to those civic clubs who hold events there.”

Walston said that individual shooters are still invited to register Saturday morning, even if they do not have a complete four-person team. Extra individual shooters may be added to teams that are short of four competitors.

To reach Bushy Creek Clays from Atmore, travel west on U.S. Highway 31 about eight miles, and then turn right onto Highway 47. Go about one mile, and turn left after crossing the railroad tracks, onto Highway 61.

Travel for a quarter mile and then turn right onto Will Vaughn Road. Bushy Creek Clays is at the end of the road.

For more information about this event, call Walston at (251) 368-1414 or (251) 538-0591, or send an email to him at awalston@alfains.com.