FOR MORE THAN 70 YEARS, THE KINGSBURG GUN CLUB has drawn sportspeople from across the region to its grounds. But more recently, KGC has become home to the best of the next generation as host of the California State High School Clay Target League State Tournament. Kingsburg has been getting an infusion of energy and excitement from the League. “It’s great to see the interest in shotgun sports from the youth of today,” said Kingsburg past president Karl Alger. “They’ve been a nice shot in the arm for our club, bringing in more shooters for March, April, and May shoots.”
A couple of years ago, club leaders were approached by one of their members, Bill Vogt. “In 2018, I started the Immanuel High School Trap Team to participate in the League,” said longtime KGC member Bill Vogt. Immanuel launched its program with eight shooters in an eight-team conference that year. “Being the first to promote the education of youth to shotgun sports in California high schools was awesome,” Vogt said. “The sport is in the Olympics, why do we not promote it in our state?”
That gave Vogt the idea to bring the California State High School Clay Target
League State Tournament to Kingsburg as well. “KGC is a very family and community- oriented facility that loves to cater to youth and the community,” said Vogt. “Plus, we’re centrally located, and we have plenty of trap houses.” To that end, KGC club members—especially the board members—began volunteering to create an environment that was both beautiful and safe for everyone to enjoy a good shoot. “As both a club member and a coach, it was very exciting to see how every team ran their own house and took care of their own trap field,” Vogt said. “It’s the
start of what every high school needs to have to teach responsibility, pride,
sportsmanship, and safety to the youth of our nation.” Kingsburg Gun Club was established in 1948.
By the end of that year, the club had built four trap houses and was holding events with more people than daylight folks literally lined up their cars and turned on headlights so they could finish in the dark. The following spring floodlights were put in, making Kingsburg Gun Club the first in the United States with lit trap fields. Today, KGC facilities include a clubhouse, a walk-in cold room, and expanded bathrooms and showers, along with additional trap fields to accommodate trap shooting ’s growing popularity. The club’s most recent project is the California Trap Shooting Hall Of Fame, located on KGC grounds.
“Trap shooting is our club’s bread and butter,” Vogt said. “We teach it, promote it, and live off it. Shooting sports have so much to offer to everyone—big, tall, short, small, and even disabled individuals can participate and compete. “KGC is a place where literally anyone can come shoot, learn, and enjoy shotgun sporting events. The long-term effect of our students’ passion for the sport multiply through their friends and family members—not only here but hopefully throughout the nation and wherever they decide to call home.”