Youth Rifle

The Oak Harbor Conservation Club hosts an active youth rifle program, offering classroom education and practical range and safety training.

A 10-week sporter air rifle program was recently completed with 25 graduates.

Beginning in January, 2001, girls and boys below the age of 20 were invited
to participate in a 10-week course on safe gun handling and Olympic-style
position shooting. Instruction was provided by NRA-certified coaches and
instructors, and all equipment was provided. A qualification shoot was
conducted at the end of the course for membership in the U.S. Junior Shooting
Team through the “Take Your Best Shot” program. Participants were required to
pass two written examinations as well as a practical shooting final for
successful completion of the course.

Young shooters had the opportunity to work at their own pace as they learn gun
safety and Olympic style rifle shooting in the standing, prone, kneeling and
sitting positions. All targets shot during the course of instruction qualified
to earn personal awards through the NRA-sponsored Marksmanship Qualification
Program. The course allowed a natural progression into firearm competition
using .22 caliber rifles, with further instruction offered in July, 2001 for
the graduates of the air rifle program.

Our program encourages all interested youths to attend these courses, which
focus primarily on safety. Safety is consistently reinforced through active
range time and classroom lecture. On open-range nights, students must
continually demonstrate safe gun handling techniques in order to remain in
the range.

Oak Harbor Conservation Club Juniors Win Medals

Four members of the Oak Harbor Conservation Club junior rifle shooters won medals in the Buckeye Junior Three Position League. The Oak Harbor club re-entered the state wide smallbore league after a long hiatus. The Buckeye Junior League shoots at The Ohio State University range on the campus in Columbus on Sundays throughout the winter.

In the Buckeye Junior League, Michael Seery was awarded medals for Highest Score, Prone Position, Matches 1 and 2; Highest Score, Kneeling Position, Match 5; and Highest Aggregate Score Intermediate Junior, Match 4. Richard Rudes was awarded a First Place Medal for High Score Unclassified. Kathryn Rudes was awarded a Second Place Medal Unclassified. Andrew “Tucker” Jones was awarded a Third Place Medal Unclassified. Shooters are classified based on their scores in matches to allow shooters to compete only against other shooters of similar skill.

Mike Seery also won the Bronze (3rd highest overall aggregate) at the NRA 4-Position Sectional Match held at the Fish & Game Club of Vienna (Ohio) on March 11, 2006.

Richard Rudes had previously won three medals in the National Muzzleloading Matches at Camp Perry 2003.

The Oak Harbor Conservation Club has an active junior shooting program for boys and girls between ages 10 and 21. The junior rifle shooters practice Thursday nights at 7:00 p.m. at the club house located on Gordon Road, Oak Harbor.

The junior rifle program encompasses three and four position smallbore (.22 caliber rimfire), three position air rifle, high power rifle, and muzzleloading rifle. Club shooters have participated in the Small Arms Firing School and shooting the John C. Garand National Match held during the National Matches at Camp Perry. The members are seeking to join a new league forming this fall and are looking forward to competing in several of the matches this year at Camp Perry.

Coaches for the junior rifle shooters are Terry Rudes, Kent Floro, Sherry Finken, and Michael Seery.

Please contact Terry Rudes (419) 732-3000 or e-mail at .

Some of the feedback from the previous course are as follows:

“Everything was great….”

“I believe this course was great! There is nothing really that could be done
to more greatness (except adding more hours to shoot!)….”

“I really liked the course. Before taking this course, I had never even touched
a gun. Now, I can shoot fairly well, and I’ve learned a lot about guns, gun
safety, etc. Thanks!”

“I’ve never been to a place as good as this….Thank you!”

“I think this was a great program. I would recommend it to any beginner and I
appreciate all of the time and effort put into it.”

“The course was good. Much better than I expected…”

“I thought the course was interesting, and I learned a lot from it which others
should learn. It was awesome!”

“Do it again next year.”

“I thought it was the best course I ever had…”

“Before taking this course, I had only shot a gun a few times in my life. I
really enjoyed learning gun safety as well as the different positions. I
especially liked the opportunity to practice. I think it is important for
everyone to learn about guns, since the freedom of owning them is being
threatened. If people come to realize that guns are not only used for bad, but
are an Olympic Sport- and a safe one (when precautions are taken), maybe then
they wouldn’t be so intimidated. I also thought this course was organized and
taught very well.”