Wyoming State Association Uses CMP Development Program to Support Junior Athletes
July 21, 2020Civilian Marksmanship Program▸Club News▸Wyoming State Association Uses CMP Development Program to Support Junior Athletes
By Ashley Brugnone, CMP Writer
WORLAND, Wyoming – On May 30, 2020, the Wyoming State Shooting Association (WSSA) out of Worland, Wyoming, conducted a rifle raffle drawing using the help of the Civilian Marksmanship Program’s (CMP) M1 Garand Fund Development Program.
According to CMP Policy, the program offers an affiliated and state associated club a vintage M1 rifle for a reduced price of $200 to be used for fundraising efforts (raffle, auction, etc.). All proceeds earned from the fundraiser must be used for the support of juniors and junior shooting sports programs.
The winner of the 2020 WSSA raffle was an individual from Cheyenne. Overall, the fundraising (event brought in over $2,500 for the club’s local junior funds account (after subtracting costs for printing tickets, mailing, etc.).
All of the money earned will go toward junior supplies and equipment, website updates/designs and funding junior travel expenses.
To spread the word on the M1 raffle each year, the WSSA sends tickets to all its membership –including its 61 junior members. They also advertise the raffle in the club newsletter, website and Facebook page. All tickets sold are returned to the club’s secretary for a drawing held at the annual spring meeting.
The WSSA and Junior Support:
“Our raffles are an annual thing, I know because I have spent more than enough on these raffles through my 50+ years as a member,” said Kenny Lankford, president of the State Association and competitor.
According to Lankford, the WSSA has had junior involvement even before he started shooting. He recalls several junior competitors (many he still knows) that attended the annual Camp Perry National Matches in Ohio under sponsorship of the WSSA and the Office of the Director of Civilian Marksmanship – what is now known as the CMP.
Today, most of the junior programs in Wyoming are initiated by its member clubs and are supported as needed. The existing 27 clubs are listed on the WSSA’s website (https://www.wyossa.com/affilatedclubs.htm).
“I am the biggest fan of Wyoming State Shooting Association’s junior achievements, as I am Life Member 14, which I purchased in 1969 when I was a junior shooter of 16 years of age,” he said. “I just recently held the CMP Wyoming State High Power Championships – 50 years after I first started highpower as a junior in 1970.”
In highpower, WSSA has had juniors compete from all over the state. Since his election as president two years ago, Lankford, competition director Phil Morgan and secretary Nick Nickleson have worked to fill junior highpower activities. Their action plan sets the first priority to instilling junior leaders within the state.
“We started last year, gaining permission to purchase an informational table at the Wyoming State 4-H State Match, which hosted over 600 Junior participants and held in Douglas, Wyoming,” Lankford said.
The club furnished 16 first place trophies for the event and also raffled off a Kimber G82 rifle, which was won by a 4-H leader. All of the proceeds were given to the Wyoming 4-H shooting sports.
“We were working on this year’s 2020 Wyoming 4-H State Shoot and gained permission to hold a highpower clinic during the weekend shoot to hopefully introduce new shooters to CMP and NRA (National Rifle Association) highpower shooting,” Lankford said. “Unfortunately, this year’s events were cancelled due to COVID-19.”
One of the junior shooters who passed through Wyoming’s rifle program over the years was SP4 Greg Strom, who crowned several achievements throughout his decorated career, such as two President’s Rifle Match wins (1980, 1984) – one of the most prestigious honors earned at the National Matches. The trip to Camp Perry is a favored event for most junior marksmen around the country, and the Wyoming juniors are no different.
“I, myself, have taken six different juniors to Camp Perry, when I was WSSA’s highpower director,” Lankford said. “The WSSA has continued support of juniors while building up an inventory of highpower equipment – enough to fully equip seven juniors.”
He went on to say that the Association has also converted two AR rifles to flat top receivers in order to allow those using them the ability to compete with optic sights, along with re-barreling four rifles for junior use.
In smallbore and air rifle, the club lends support to the USA Shooting Junior Olympic Championships held in Cheyenne, Wyo., which had 31 competitors in 2020. The club also supported the Wyoming State Junior Olympic Three-Position Air Rifle Championships in 2019, with 16 shooters.
Additionally, the state’s smallbore junior director, Dudley Irvine, has been the CMP State Director for Wyoming since the installation of the director program. As State Director, Irvine serves as a valuable resource for improving junior programs and marksmanship opportunities for youth.
For now, Lankford is working with a junior, locally, who won several awards in the junior division last year at the State 4-H Match. He’s also in talks with one of the Illinois junior leaders in the hopes of gaining information on how they run their program in Illinois and the requirements of the juniors to sell raffle tickets to help finance their own support – just another example of the proven network of junior supporters coming together to support one another, all for the good of junior marksmanship.
M1 Garand Fund Development Program
The Civilian Marksmanship Program encourages all State Associations to take advantage of this program to help raise funds for their Junior Marksmanship Programs. The rifle may be raffled, auctioned off, or used as a prize in a marksmanship competition where funds for junior shooting are raised. To learn more about the M1 Garand Fund Development Program, visit https://thecmp.org/clubs/state-associations/m1-garand-fund-development-program/.
CMP Junior Highpower Programs
Interested in learning about Highpower Programs in your area? Visit the CMP’s website to find a local club at https://ct.thecmp.org/app/v1/index.php?do=clubSearch or contact your CMP State Director – visit https://thecmp.org/training-tech/state-director/ to find contact information. The CMP also offers Marksmanship 101 classes throughout the U.S. Visit our website at https://thecmp.org/training-tech/marksmanship-101/ for more information.