The Scholastic Clay Target Program (SCTP) would like to welcome William ‘Bernie’ Till as the latest Regional Field Representative to join the SCTP national staff!
Bernie got his start in youth clay target sports in 2009 as the coach of the Heathwood Hall Sporting Clays team in support of his sons shooting sports interest. He left Heathwood to take on the volunteer role of youth programs director at Mid Carolina Gun Club in Orangeburg SC and starting the Mid Carolina 4-H program. He became a SCTP head coach in 2011 for the Mid Carolina Young Guns SCTP team.
Bernie led the effort to bring SCTP back to SC in 2013 after a 2-year hiatus by volunteering to serve as State Advisor for SC. In 2017, he built a partnership with 4-H teams in South Carolina that has resulted in several new SCTP teams, more shooting opportunities for kids and has seen SCTP participation triple in the last year.
Bernie is a 4-H State Instructor and has certified over 200 coaches in support of his passion for promoting youth shooting by equipping new teams with qualified coaches.
Bernie will be working primarily from his home office in Orangeburg, South Carolina supporting the southeast states including Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi and South Carolina.
Following a two-year absence, South Carolina youth shooters have returned to SCTP in 2014 in grand style at the South Carolina State Sporting Clays Championship, held jointly with South Carolina 4-H on May 24 at Rocky Knoll Sporting Clays in Greenwood.
The event was a huge success, and there is tremendous growth anticipated for SCTP in the coming year. Wardlaw Academy took first place in both the Junior Varsity and Intermediate Advanced divisions, and the Mid Carolina Young Guns took first in Rookie, Intermediate 1st, and Senior Varsity. The all-ladies team from Wyman King took second in the Senior Varsity division.
Bernie Till, South Carolina SCTP State Advisor, reported, “The folks at Rocky Knoll Sporting Clays do an awesome job and go out of their way to support youth shooters. Support by the National Wild Turkey Federation ensured that the event was a success by picking up the tab for the fees, providing door prizes, and donating items to teams to raise money. The lure of SSSF endowment funds also made the event a ‘must shoot’ youth event. All of these supporters have great appreciation for SCTP and the shooting sports opportunities it creates for kids.”
Efforts to bring SCTP back to South Carolina began late last summer between re-appointed SC State Advisor Bernie Till and SCTP National Director, Tom Wondrash. These conversations gained a lot of momentum with a strong presence at the Palmetto Sportsman’s Classic, a local sports show in Columbia in March. Volunteers from the Mid Carolina Young Guns team manned the booth and introduced many new shooters to SCTP and youth shooting opportunities in SC. This has resulted in several new teams and increased growth in existing programs.
Several teams have requested presentations and meetings with coaches and families to better understand the many benefits of SCTP, and shooters from SC will return to Sparta, Illinois this year for the SCTP National Team Championships being held at the World Shooting and Recreational Complex (WSRC).
For the first time in SC, there will be many more SCTP shooting opportunities available to the large number of youth shooters in the state. Skeet, trap, and sporting clays events are planned year-round, with several remaining this season. Discussions with neighboring states regarding regional matches have also occurred, with plans being made to hold the first next year.
The SCTP Skeet and Trap state championship tournament will also be held in conjunction with 4-H on June 14 at Mid Carolina Gun Club in Orangeburg.
For more information on SCTP opportunities in South Carolina, contact Bernie Till at firstname.lastname@example.org.