Who we are: The Paul Bunyan Juniors are a rifle club. We shoot .22 caliber rifles and .177 pellet rifles. We have about a dozen kids and several adult coaches who share an interest in serious competition rifle shooting. We are not a club for just plinkers.
What we do: Olympic-style rifle shooting in three positions: prone, standing and kneeling. This is the style of shooting done in the Olympic Games and the type of shooting done at the college level under the NCAA. We shoot at paper bullseyes at 50 feet on the pistol range September thru April, using .22 caliber single-shot rifles. The air rifle season corresponds with the indoor season (50 feet). The air rifle is fired at 10 meters or 33 feet. During April thru August, we move to the 50 yard range for the outdoor training and competition events. Junior club members elect club officers; we maintain our own treasury to supplement club equipment and activities.
When and where we do it: We shoot at the Paul Bunyan Rifle and Sportsman’s Club just south of Puyallup. There is a map on the back of this sheet. Practice sessions are on Tuesday evening’s year around. Gates are opened at 6:00PM and we try to start shooting by 6:30PM. We are usually finished by 9:00PM. We require regular attendance but some of our members will occasionally sit out a few months to participate in another activity.
Requirements: It’s OK to be right or left handed. Perfect 20/20 eyesight is not a requirement. Our “ideal” age for starting out is between 12 and 16, but some beginners are a little younger or older. Kids who are real short (say, under 4 feet or so) sometimes have difficulty at first. About the only real requirements are that each kid have:
A willingness to learn
The drive to succeed in a pretty demanding Olympic sport
Be in reasonably good physical condition.
Costs: There is a $25 sign-up fee and club dues are $5 per year. There is a $50 deposit required before shooters check out their equipment. Parents need not be members of our sponsoring organization, The Paul Bunyan Rifle and Sportsman’s Club. The only recurring expense is .22 caliber ammo, now being sold for about $3.00 per 50 shots. There are additional costs when you get involved in serious competition, (match entry fees, affiliation dues) but those vary considerably and are handled on a match-by-match basis.
Equipment: The club furnishes just about everything that a beginning shooter will need; rifle, coat, glove, sling, mat, scope and all that neat stuff. It’s beginner level equipment, but that’s OK for our needs. By the time a kid has been into this sport for a year or two, most of them start thinking about getting their own set of shootin’ stuff. We can help with that process.
Competitions: During a typical year there are several Puget Sound rifle matches that are for junior shooters only. Our busy season is January thru March. Matches are held in Puyallup, Tacoma, Seattle and Little Rock. We try to get our kids to these local matches regularly and, for the better (and more enthusiastic) shooters, to several out-of-town matches as well. As a result of this program, Paul Bunyan roster has included Washington State Junior Rifle Champion, State 4-H rifle champion, and have set several junior national records. We have a good time at our practices, but once the matches get under way, we know what we are doing.
Success Rate: Several of our recent shooters have gone on to the collegiate level with athletic scholarships based on their shooting skills. Three of our club members have reached the “All-American” award for their shooting skills.
WHERE DO YOU GO FROM HERE?
Come on out to the range some Tuesday evening after 6:30PM and look us over. Bring your parents. Talk to the other shooters, look at the equipment and make your own decision on whether this sort of Olympic-style marksmanship is something you want to try. If so, formal instruction can start either right away or the following week. Everyone starts out with the easiest shooting position and progresses at their individual rate.
Paul Bunyan Rifle & Sportsman's Club
A Private Membership Shooting Range dedicated to creating a safe and enjoyable facility for our members.