Ohio 4-H Shooting Sports History

In May 1992 the first 4-H Shooting Sports Certification workshop was held at Camp Ohio in Licking County where 17 new volunteers were certified. The second workshop was held April 1993 at Camp Whitewood in Ashtabula County. There the number of certified instructors rose to 85. In October 1992 the next workshop was held at Canter's Cave 4-H Camp in Jackson County and the number of certified instructors continued to rise to 104.

By this time many instructors were choosing to return to the workshops to receive multiple certifications. In Spring of 1993 the Workshop was held at Camp Palmer in Fulton County. A total of 47 adults attended the workshop with 31 being new instructors to 4-H Shooting Sports. In two short years the program went from 10 to 136 instructors from 42 counties. How quickly the program was growing.

To date over 780 adults have attended a workshop and became certified in the 4-H Shooting Sports program. Approximately 300 have been dropped from the rosters for various reasons. So that leaves over 480 active certified instructors. The majority of those instructors have multiple certifications.

In 1997 it was reported that there were 1441 youth involved in 4-H Shooting Sports program. That does not include youth that were reached through a camping experience. The numbers reported in 1998 were 1,472. Camps reported in 1999 that over 9,000 youth were involved in a 4-H Shooting Sports activity at an Ohio 4-H Camp. Still growing, 2001 over 18,000 youth were actively involved in the Ohio 4-H Shooting Sports Program. 2002 over 24,000 youth were actively involved in the Ohio 4-H Shooting Sports Program. Are the club numbers accurate? Probably not! As instructors, we need to make sure that we record each youth in each discipline to our County agents.

What do the next several years hold for us? How many new volunteers will Ohio have as we shoot into the next millennium? The important question is, "How many youth will be taught safe responsible use of firearms and archery equipment in the 4-H Shooting Sports program?" TIME, ENERGY, AND KNOWLEDGE. The commitment and dedication of 4-H Shooting Sports volunteers is shown in the growth of the 4-H Shooting Sports program. A simple thank you cannot express the value of 4-H volunteers.