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NYS 4-H Shooting Sports blog

Welcome to the New York State 4-H Shooting Sports Website!


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April 23, 2016

New York State 4-H Shooting Sports
17th Annual Banquet & Auction Fundraiser!
Fort William Henry Resort
Lake George, NY

Towers Hall, Fort William Henry
Towers Hall, Fort William Henry

The 17th Annual New York State 4-H Shooting Sports Banquet & Auction will be held on Saturday, April 23, 2016 in historic lakeside Towers Hall at Fort William Henry Hotel & Resort, Lake George, NY. This premiere annual event raises vital funds that help ensure our commitment to excellence and growth in educational 4-H Youth Shooting Sports statewide programming. We are exceedingly grateful to all our sponsors, donors, friends and supporters who continue to make both this important annual event and our goals possible. We cannot do it without you!

Please mark your calendars, plan now to join us and stay tuned to our website for further information on this most worthwhile event - we hope to see you there!



2016 SHOT Show

2016 SHOT Show

Members of the National 4-H Shooting Sports Committee, Dr. Mark Tassin of Louisiana State University (L) and Nicole Pokorney of the University of Minnesota (R) greet New York State 4-H Shooting Sports Teen Ambassador Logan Kimble-Lee (CL) and New York State 4-H Shooting Sports Instructor Colleen Kimble (CR) at the National booth at the 2016 SHOT Show in Las Vegas, NV.

The 2016 SHOT Show opened on Tuesday, January 19th, at the Sands Convention Center in Las Vegas, Nevada.  The National Shooting Sports Foundation’s SHOT Show is the largest Shooting, Hunting, and Outdoor Trade Show and Conference of its kind worldwide. 

The New York State 4-H Shooting Sports Program representatives to the 2016 SHOT Show include NYS State Director Bill Schwerd, NYS Assistant Director John Bowe, Education Specialist Kenyon Simpson, Instructor Colleen Kimble and Teen Ambassador Logan Kimble-Lee.

NYS 4-H Shooting Sports attends this important annual event to connect with the many corporations, foundations, and organizations that support us and provide supplies for our programming.  Throughout the show week, a booth, staffed by the National 4-H Shooting Sports Committee and National Teen Ambassadors, gives industry the opportunity to meet with the leading youth development program in the country.  Our representatives are able to learn about and see new firearms, archery equipment, safety products and other related program items, first hand, before they are released to the public.




4-H Shooting Sports…
A Building Block for Natural Resources Careers

Former 4-H’er, John Pokrzywka, from Galway, NY, is now working with the United States Forest Service as a USFS Agro-Range Officer in the Nez Perce National Forest, Idaho.  The Nez Perce – Clearwater National Forests are comprised of over 4 million acres of diverse rugged terrain with nearly half of the land designated as wilderness under the National Wilderness Preservation System.

John Pokrzywk

John Pokrzywka, Nez Perce National Forest, Idaho

For many years throughout his youth, John was an active and accomplished member of the New York State 4-H Shooting Sports Program.  Later, while attending Paul Smith’s College, he went on to become a 4-H Shooting Sports Volunteer and Instructor in Saratoga County so he could continue to help out and give back to the NYS4-HSS Program whenever he could.

When John was required to complete an Internship as part of his Forestry degree requirements at Paul Smith’s he chose to work for Cornell Cooperative Extension of Saratoga County.  Under the direction of Laurel Gailor, Capital/Mohawk Partnership for Regional Invasive Species Management Coordinator, he studied invasive plants and animals while working alongside friends he had known throughout his 4-H experience.  Becoming more knowledgeable of invasive species and how to handle them, on top of the life skills learned through 4-H Natural Resources Shooting Sports programming, played an important role in helping John prepare for his career position with the USFS where his responsibilities include weed control and management, preparing landing pads for helicopters, transporting fire specialists to wildfires and even rounding up an occasional loose herd of cattle!   

~Best Wishes, John – From all of us at NYS4-HSS~



Mickey Elliott Named Sportsperson of the Year by New York Outdoor News!

Mickey Elliot

Long-time NYS4-HSS Instructor and Key Volunteer, Raymond “Mickey” Elliott of Ballston Spa, NY was recently named Sportsperson of the Year for 2015 by the New York Outdoor News.  A great article on Mikey, detailing his many accomplishments and lifelong commitment to the shooting sports and conservation, is featured in their May 15, 2015 issue.  Congratulations Mickey from all of us at New York State 4-H Shooting Sports!


NYS 4-H Shooting Sports
On Target with Positive Youth Development!

In 2013, New York State firearms law and its corresponding regulations underwent significant revision.  The confusion and misinformation that followed these statutory changes prompted one pro-firearms blogger to state that youth firearms safety education and marksmanship programs were doomed - he even went on to say that 4-H Shooting Sports (among other programs) was dead.  He could not have been more wrong!   

The New York State 4-H Shooting Sports program entered a new era when it passed the 20,000 youth participant mark in 2010 and we have continued to grow in numbers now averaging over 28,500 youth state-wide participants for each of the past three years.  Steady growth, supported by two very successful annual Instructor Trainings that reached between 150-200 instructors per year, has reinforced important programs that continue to develop and expand.  Such trainings have also enabled new programs to become established in many New York counties that either did not previously have a program or whose program had once gone dormant.

In 2014, eight NYS 4-H Shooting Sports instructors attended a National 4-H Shooting Sports training in order to bring back the newest training information and curriculum outlines to the New York program. Also in 2014, NYS 4-H Shooting Sports Director, Bill Schwerd and Assistant Director, John Bowe, sat down for a pivotal meeting at Cornell University with Dr. Keith Tidball, our faculty-liaison at Cornell, Andy Turner, NYS 4-H Director, and Karen Ferris and Jamie Ferris of PW Wood Insurance to discuss how to make the NYS 4-H Shooting Sports Program both stronger and more compliant overall.  This meeting led to a staff driven re-write of the Financial Office Resource Management (FORM) Code applicable to the NYS 4-H Shooting Sports Program and has resulted in a much clearer and more specific outline that balances our program with the NYS Penal Code. 

As of early 2015, there are over one hundred instructors registered for the NYS 4-H Shooting Sports Winter Training.  In addition, three counties have already undergone refresher training and other counties are lining up to do the same.  Finally, in January 2015, John Bowe, NYS4-HSS Assistant Director, was elected to the National 4-H Shooting Sports Committee and assigned as the liaison for the Evaluation Sub-Committee.  

Brace yourself … we’re still growing!







Read past NYS 4-H Shooting Sports Spotlight On articles.

The 4-H Name and Emblem are a Federal Mark and are protected under 18 USC 707 and subject to regulations that prohibit the 4-H Name and Emblem to be used in any way that implies endorsement or exclusivity of any firm, product or service.  The inclusion of entities, websites or other sources cited on the New York State 4-H Shooting Sports website, or New York State 4-H Shooting Sports affiliated online or media outlets, is representative of a cooperative partnership with 4-H and does not imply endorsement or exclusivity.


Updated January 4, 2016

Upcoming Events Updated...>
January 4, 2016!

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