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Upper Delta WMA Shooting Range Opens
September 13, 2006
State and local officials, students and community members were on-hand today to celebrate the grand opening of the state’s 10th shooting sports facility operated by the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (ADCNR). The uniquely designed shooting range, located in the Upper Delta Wildlife Management Area (WMA) near Stockton, Alabama, offers eight covered shooting stations for pistols or rifles. A 20-foot long steel tube that bullets travel through controls the trajectory of the bullet and prevents errant rounds from impacting outside of the earthen berm. A shotgun range is directly adjacent to the pistol and rifle range. The Upper Delta WMA range was constructed using funds from the sale of state hunting licenses and a federal excise tax on sporting arms and ammunition.
Shooting demonstrations, hunter safety and education materials were provided during today’s grand opening. Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Commissioner M. Barnett Lawley welcomed guests and praised the skills used to create the new facility. “We are grateful to the two public high schools that partnered with the Department’s Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries (WFF) Division to help build specific projects for the shooting facility through their Career/Technical Education (CTE) programs,” said Lawley. “Promoting hunter safety and providing hunter education in our schools is an important part of our state history and culture.” Corky Pugh, Director of the Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries, stated “We are glad to provide local sportsmen with a facility to participate in southwest Alabama’s rich hunting and shooting sports heritage.”
The two partnering schools are Washington County High School in the Washington County School System and Foley High School in the Baldwin County School System. The Foley High School agriscience students, taught by Brian Grantham, built the shooting stands and seats at the facility. The Washington County High School agriscience/construction class, taught by Terry Sheffield, constructed 16 concrete forms for the shooting pipe during their construction/agriculture class. For two weeks, students used their one-hour class times to develop the pattern for and construct the concrete forms. Both instructors hope to use the new shooting range for hands-on student training during their hunter education classes. Materials for both of the class projects were funded through the ADCNR Hunter Education program.
“Today’s celebration is simply a fine example of exactly what can be accomplished when Alabamians work together to create more rewarding opportunities for our state’s future generations,” said Sherry Key, Director of Alabama's Career/Technical Education programs. “Our state has always had a rich heritage of promoting the many benefits of hunter education and wildlife conservation. We are extremely proud of the opportunity that our teachers and students have had to contribute to the success of this exciting project and thankful for the wonderful relationship existing between our programs and the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.”
Directions to the range: From I-65, take exits 31 or 34 to the junction of Highways 59 and 225 in Stockton. Travel north approximately 10 miles on Highway 59. Turn left on St. Luke’s Church Road and follow the signs into the shooting range. The range is open each day during daylight hours and provides local shooting enthusiasts with a safe environment to participate in shooting sports or sight-in their hunting firearms. Shooting range users between the ages of 16-64 must possess a valid state hunting license or a wildlife management area license. State regulations require shooters to use a paper target that is attached to a target frame at 25 or 100 yards. Located in Baldwin and Mobile Counties, the 35,795-acre WMA offers big game, small game, and waterfowl hunting.
The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources promotes wise stewardship, management and enjoyment of Alabama’s natural resources through five divisions: Marine Police, Marine Resources, State Parks, State Lands, and Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries. To learn more about ADCNR visit www.outdooralabama.com.