Wingard Brothers Camp Perry Vacation
August 3, 2023Civilian Marksmanship Program▸The First Shot▸Wingard Brothers Camp Perry Vacation
By Jennifer Green, CMP Feature Writer
Summer vacation destinations vary from family to family. Depending on the budget, some might take a big trip down to Disney World, some might rent a house on the beach, and some may go camping. The Wingard Family does things a little differently. They come to Camp Perry for the National Matches every year to compete and bond as a family.
Blake Wingard, who is currently on the University of Alabama Rifle Team, was the first to attend the National Matches in 2015. It seems that he adds a sibling to the roster every year or so. Today, Drake, Rhett, Wade and Kent join in on the fun shooting air rifle and smallbore during their vacation. Eventually, they would like to try different events and disciplines.
The Wingard’s youngest sibling Charlotte, who goes by “Sissy” has it made in the shade… literally. She brings her own pint sized tent, complete with crafts, stuffed animals and a cot, so she can take a nap if she gets tired on some of the longer days. She’s not quite old enough for the competitions, but something tells me we’ll see her out on the firing line soon enough.
The Wingard Family drives up from Alabama with mom, Aimee, at the wheel. They shoot with the Magic City Gun Club in Pinson, Alabama. Aimee expressed that the family was very fortunate to get to shoot with the club saying, “Perry Mitchell and Don Trawick worked very hard to establish gear, rifles and ammo at inexpensive prices so that youth could compete.” The club provides support for the family to be able to compete at the National Matches every year. “We absolutely could not do this without them,” Aimee added.
So what is the best thing about shooting with all of your siblings? The competition. I know, who saw that one coming? Nothing like a little sibling rivalry to bring you closer together on family vacation. Oldest brother Blake used to be top dog, but now, his brothers are definitely giving him a run for his money.
For mom, Aimee, the best part about shooting with the family is the lifetime memories that are created together. “It bridges the generational gap. They can shoot with their grandfather or their younger brother and be on the same level.” The bond that forms from competing in the same sport and spending time together as the whole family is so strong. “They play baseball and they do other sports, but there’s nothing like this. That’s what I feel like CMP provides when they hold these National Matches.”
So, for your next family vacation, consider the CMP National Matches at Camp Perry – it’s fun for the whole family! Check out the 2024 National Match Schedule at https://thecmp.org/cmp-national-matches/.
Interested in joining a Marksmanship Team? Visit the CMP website at https://thecmp.org/clubs/search-clubs/ to find a CMP Affiliated Club near you or reach out to your CMP State Director at https://thecmp.org/training-tech/state-director/.