On Friday, April 22 Terry, Noah, and I drove to Fort Pierre for Noah's 4H State Shooting Competition. He had qualified a few weeks earlier and had been practicing shooting in the garage the days leading up to State.
Three hours later we arrived. Thankfully we were able to leave the other three kids at home with my mom and it was a pleasant trip. We were quite overwhelmed when we walked into the large fairground arena building but finally found these volunteers at a table at the front. We were at the right place after all and they gave Noah his targets.
After several minutes of dazed wandering we found Noah's BB gun area. Then we just had to wait for his turn at 5pm. There was also archery and perhaps air-guns in the arena. I think .22 rifles compete too. There could be others but I don't even know.
I climbed the arena stairs to take in the full picture. All those standing pieces of cardboard against the far wall are for the BB gunners. Here is a description from the website:
"The 2016 South Dakota 4-H State Shoot hosted 1,700 youth April 22-24 in the Pierre/Fort Pierre area. Shooters were broken down into age groups and by equipment. The South Dakota State 4-H Shoot is one of the largest youth shooting events in the nation. Teams are selected or confirmed for multiple national events during State. The 4-H Shooting Sports program develops safe shooting habits in youth ages 8-19. Students practice under the guidance of certified instructors and coaches who have received over 15 hours of training in the areas of safety, techniques, coaching and youth development."
Noah opted to have Terry help him even though I've been the one to take him to shooting club every Monday since January. I preferred it like that so I could take pictures. Here Terry is hanging up Noah's first target.
Waiting for the all clear.
...and he's off!
Noah was a bit disappointed after his first position (prone) but it was lucky that Miss Kathy (also his piano teacher) was there working and could cheer him up.
Next was the standing position and he did his best ever on that position. It's difficult to stand still.
Look at all those targets.
Next up was sitting.
He likes his daddy.
On this final position, kneeling, Terry made a deal with Noah. Since it's his second most difficult position, Terry told him he'd pay him a dollar every shot in the black. That sure motivated him and he did better than usual.
Originally we were just going to leave and go straight home but since the scores were only going to take an hour we decided to go to Guadalajara for dinner.
Noah did pretty well for his first season of shooting. He scored 272 out of 400, which earned him a red ribbon, sort of like third place. He was pleased. Ellie, Grace, and Moses who go to our church did fantastic!
The drive home into the sunset was beautiful.
The sun was in the perfect place for me to snap several shots of the skeleton dinosaur along the Interstate at mile 170.
I still can't decide which shot I like better.