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Aiming for success

Lugoff Optimist Club contribution helps L-EHS approach goal

Posted: January 13, 2012 5:14 p.m.
Updated: January 16, 2012 5:00 a.m.
Michael Ulmer/C-I

Lugoff-Elgin High School Principal Tommy Gladden (center) accepts a $500 check donated to the school by the Lugoff Optimist Club. The donation will be used to help alleviate the costs of establishing a skeet shooting club at the school. On hand for the presentation were (from left) Optimist Club members Calvin Still, Jill Wolfe, Larry Patrick, Jimmy Jones, Warren Wood, Club President Joe Herlong and skeet shooting club coaches Allen Trapp, Kip Wolfe and C.R. Miles.

Lugoff-Elgin High School (L-EHS) received a $500 donation from the Lugoff Optimist Club Wednesday as part of an effort to establish a skeet shooting club at the school.

L-EHS Principal Tommy Gladden said the idea for the club’s creation was the result of a brainstorming session between several students at the school, teacher Charlene Trapp and her husband, Allen Trapp, assistant county administrator for Kershaw County.

“I put the students who were interested in the club in touch with the Trapp family, and they kind of did the research and Allen did some leg-work on it and now we’re putting this into gear,” Gladden said.

He also said the Optimist Club’s contribution will help to get the club started as early as this spring.

“Our students have been asking for an opportunity to get involved in something related to the hunting sports and this just became a perfect opportunity,” he said. “We’re excited. We’ve got a wonderful group of highly interested students already signed up for this with their parents already involved as well.”

Gladden also noted the club will help teach students the correct way to use a firearm.

“We’re teaching them safe practices and those are things that the students will need,” he said. “That’s what I’m excited about and that’s why the school is taking this on as an opportunity, because it can improve the quality of lives of our students. It’s really a lifelong sport.”

According to Allen Trapp, the coach for the club, since the skeet shooting group will be considered a school club, it will not be funded as a full athletic sport. Consequently, the operating cost will have to come from the group itself or community contributions.

 “There are entry fees, there are lunches to provide, and there are a lot of expenses involved that we don’t really have any method of trying to get covered. It’s not one of the traditional sports. It’s a club, so we’re reaching out to organizations,” Trapp said. “We’re looking to get any organization that’s willing to donate to help these kids and it will all go toward helping to offset the cost they’ll occur to do this.”

He added that he was thankful Gladden had the foresight to work toward the creation of the club.

“All kids don’t fit into traditional athletics and this is an opportunity for kids going into high school who have an interest in something besides the traditional sports,” Trapp said. “We’ve started out with a lot of interest and, of course, Mr. Gladden has established some high standards for this. We’ve got a great group to get this thing started with and we’re really excited. And it’s going to grow. This is our year to get it started and get it off the ground, but we’re expecting this to really grow.”

Optimist Club President Joe Herlong said he was glad to be a part of the effort to help establish the club.

“The Optimist Club really likes this opportunity because it gives people in the community a chance to know that there is an avenue to help youth and the Optimist Club is a friend of youth … that’s what we’re here for,” Herlong said.

Optimist Club member and County Councilman Jimmy Jones reiterated Herlong’s sentiments, adding “it’s going to be nice to see where this goes in the future.”

For more information on how to donate to the skeet shooting club, contact Jill Wolfe at 438-6192.


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