Outdoors Notebook

Turkey shoot is a learning experience for high school senior

High school senior’s project pays off

CorrespondentNovember 29, 2012 

Joe Breece is a high school student and an outdoorsman. In recent weeks he was a businessman, too.

For his senior project, Breece conducted a turkey shoot at Corbett’s Nursery on N.C. 231 in Zebulon. He learned how weather and the whims of the public affect business as he raised funds for conservation.

“The turkey shoot was to raise money for the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission, their conservation department, and just to spread the word of conservation and educate people on conservation and why it’s important,” said the 17-year-old resident of Archer Lodge who attends Johnston County Early College Academy on the Johnston Community College campus in Smithfield.

He promoted the event with signs along the roadway, fliers at convenience stores, and at an automotive store and on a Facebook page. Hurricane Sandy put a damper on the Oct. 26-27 sessions. But the Nov. 2-3 and 9-10 sessions drew “a pretty good turnout,” with about six rounds of shooters each night, Breece said. The most was nine rounds on Nov. 10. The Nov. 16 session had just two people, and Nov. 17 saw three rounds of shooters.

After expenses, which included buying turkeys at a discount and on sale at Walmart, Breece raised $350. Besides funds, he came away with new knowledge.

“I learned it takes a lot of work to have a turkey shoot, a whole lot of work,” said Breece, who hopes to become a wildlife biologist. “I got more feeling for what it’s like to run, I guess you could call it a business, and manage money, start on time and end on time, and learned how to organize and advertise.”

Will he do this again?

“Maybe,” he said, “but probably not any time soon.”

Benefit shoot: A turkey shoot will be held 7-11 p.m. Dec. 1 to support students from Neuse Charter School in Smithfield who are going to Costa Rica for a sea turtle research project. The shoot is behind the N.C. Cleveland Indians youth baseball fields off Grill Road, between Cleveland School Road and Polenta Road in the Interstate 40 and N.C. 42 area of Clayton. The cost is $2 to $6 per shot, depending on the prize. For information, call Christy Cornell at 919-398-8789.

Chimney Rock State Park trail closed: Damage from a Nov. 14 storm has forced closure of the Hickory Nut Falls trail at Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park, according to a park news release. The storm caused extensive damage to the footbridge and blocked access to the 404-foot waterfall. As a result, the park’s winter admission rates of $10 adult and $6 ages 6-15 are in effect. The closure will not affect the annual Santa on the Chimney activities 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Dec. 8 and 15. Learn more at chimneyrockpark.com.

Got an event or achievement to recognize? Email outdoors@newsobserver.com.

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