ST. PAUL – Rep. Chris Swedzinski, R-Ghent, urges area shooting clubs to consider applying for a portion of $100,000 in state grants available for improving existing five-stand, pistol, rifle, skeet or trap ranges.
The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources administers the program. The DNR indicates the grants, which require a 1:1 match, are available to shooting clubs that allow members of the public to shoot at reasonable times and for reasonable fees. Small grants up to $25,000 are available and applicants must provide current female participation data and show an intent to improve future diversity opportunities.
“These grants would help local clubs stay up to speed with evolving demand, especially with the rise in interest and participation by high school skeet and trap teams, women and youth in general,” Swedzinski said. “Shooting ranges provide a great opportunity for families to come together and learn the ins and outs of firearms safety in a controlled environment. These clubs are important to our way of life in Greater Minnesota and I hope some local groups are successful in obtaining grant funding to help fund improvement projects.”
The $100,000 that’s available is from a $2 million appropriation the state Legislature made in 2015 to help recreational shooting clubs develop or improve shooting sports facilities for public use, with an emphasis on enhancing participation opportunities for youth. Facilities that received a prior grant, have been paid, and whose contract is closed are eligible to apply for another grant.
The application period runs through Dec. 28. The DNR said it will accept applications past that date, but projects that meet the deadline will receive priority in consideration.