Tribune-Courier features editor
Turkey shoots sponsored by The Calvert City American Legion Post 236 and the Gilbertsville American Legion Post 144 are some of the biggest fund raisers held by the organizations each year. Surprisingly, no turkeys are harmed in the course of these events.
A turkey shoot is a marksmanship contest which originally started with participants shooting live turkeys, but evolved to stationary targets in the late 1950’s, according to American Legion Post 236 member, Leonard Harp.
Harp said the shoots begin each year in September and will continue through the month of November and possibly through December.
“As long as people keep showing up, we’ll keep hosting them,” Harp said.
The contest can be run in various ways. At the Calvert City Post, twelve competitors line up at a time, with their targets poised 35 yards away. The target is a square sheet of paper with a small circle in the center and a larger circle around that.
“When I look in my scope I can hardly see it,” Harp said, “So you have to be good, and just know where to go.”
Using a shotgun, each person is allowed one shot, with ammunition provided. Afterward the targets are collected and judged. Many that miss the mark entirely can be discarded right away. Others are judged using the precision of a compass.
After the winner is announced he/she is allowed to choose a prize such as bacon, pork sausage or a pork roast.
“We have multiple ties throughout the night, sometimes three-way ties” Harp explained, “In that case they will have to re-shoot.”
After about twelve rounds, occasionally 2 other rounds are held. One being a 50/50 raffle shoot and the other being a ham shoot.
The Gilbertsville Post has only one post from which to shoot. Competitors line up and shots are fired one after another. Winners of the shoot also receive a choice of meat items.
The Gilbertsville Post is located off of US Hwy 641, at 2047 Ridge Rd. The shoot is held on Saturday nights at dusk. The Calvert City Post is located off of US Hwy 95, at 25 Little John Lane. Their shoot is held Friday nights at dusk.