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If you love being outdoors, you’ll love the shooting sports project! This project covers firearm safety and teaches responsible handling and use. Get ready because this project is hands on. Pick one or all of the disciplines 4-H offers: archery, shotgun, rifle, pistol, and hunting and outdoor skills. What makes our program different? 4-H Shooting Sports Clubs are founded on the principles of Positive Youth Development ... and that means our goal is on the youth first to ensure they feel welcome in our program, they grow in leadership independence, they are inspired to be generous in service to others, as they master skills in the shooting project. Don't get us wrong; the skills of shooting matter, it's just, the young person matters more.All youth wishing to take a shooting sports project must be enrolled in a 4-H club under the supervision of a certified shooting sports instructor. Youth may not enroll independently without supervision from an Illinois 4-H certified instructor.

Not all counties offer Shooting Sports clubs. To find out about Shooting Sports clubs in your area, contact your local Extension Office.

State Fair Guidelines

Each county may submit 2 entries total from 50380, 50381, 50382, 50383, 50384, and 1 from 50385.

Members must be a member of an approved 4-H Shooting Sports Club to exhibit..  All exhibits should be posters or stand-alone items suitable for display to the general public. Stand-alone items have the intent to enhance the discipline such as a quiver, gun case, gun sling, locking cabinet, gun or target stand, sporting clays equipment wagon, etc.  Exhibits deemed to be inappropriate by a superintendent will not be displayed.  

CLICK HERE to download the Archery Spark Sheet

CLICK HERE to download the Rifle Spark Sheet

CLICK HERE to download the Shotgun Spark Sheet

CLICK HERE to download the Hunting & Outdoor Skills Spark Sheet

CLICK HERE to download the Pistol Spark Sheet

NOTE:   Shooting Sports Displays are prohibited from displaying the following:

  • No live ammunition
  • No knives or arrow tips (including field points, hunting broadheads, etc.)
  • No functional or non-functional bows, firearms or firearm parts that could be reassembled are allowed.
  • No humanoid shaped targets or reference to paintball, laser tag, air-soft, or pointing of any type of firearm or bow toward another person is allowed.
  • No display involving primarily tactical design firearms (i.e. AR platform or military type firearms)
  • No reference or use of the word “weapon” should be used in a display
  • Make sure there are no safety violations in your display.  (Example:  no earplugs or safety glasses in a picture of a person shooting a firearm.)

Shooting Sports: Archery display (SF 50380)

Exhibit a poster or stand-alone display depicting safe archery handling, range safety, the parts of the bow, tracking the target, target sighting, or another topic you have learned through the 4-H Shooting Sports program.

Shooting Sports: Rifle display (SF 50381)

Exhibit a poster or stand-alone display depicting safe firearm handling, range safety, the parts of the rifle,  tracking the target, target sighting, or another topic you have learned through the 4-H Shooting Sports program.

Shooting Sports: Shotgun display (SF 50382)

Exhibit a poster or stand-alone display depicting safe firearm handling, range safety, the parts of the shotgun, tracking the target, target sighting, or another topic you have learned through the 4-H Shooting Sports program.

Shooting Sports: Hunting & Outdoor Skills display (SF 50383)

Exhibit a poster or stand-alone display related to something you learned in the Hunting & Outdoor Skills project.

Shooting Sports: Pistol display (SF 50384)

Exhibit a poster or stand-alone display depicting safe firearm handling, range safety, the parts of the pistol, tracking the target, target sighting, or another topic you have learned through the 4-H Shooting Sports program.

Shooting Sports Ready4Life Challenge (SF 50385)

Open to 11- to 18-year-olds enrolled in any Shooting Sports project.

Exhibits in this category must include the following: a) a physical representation of the career or business product such as a model, prototype or display/portfolio that includes images of accomplished work; b) verbal or written explanations that demonstrate knowledge of the related career or business fields, potential careers, and the appropriate requirements for achievement in those fields. The judging criteria for this class values thoroughness of career and/or business exploration and pursuit above the workmanship of the physical specimen on display.

Shooting Sports Maker (SF 50400)

Counties may submit 3 entries TOTAL combined from all Maker exhibit divisions.

Exhibits in this category are designed to be multi-disciplinary in nature, innovative, and must not fit into any other exhibit category. To qualify for this category, your project MUST abide by the following guidelines:

  • Exhibits must be an object or device that has an intended purpose and uses technology in either a mechanical way, digital (computer) way, or combination of the two.
  • The device must be something that can be used in everyday life by multiple people (a target audience), and MUST be manufactured/built by the exhibitor (If not fully manufactured by the exhibitor, the device MUST be modified structurally or be reprogramed to perform a different function other than what it was designed to do
  • Exhibit MUST be able to interact with the outside world. (e.g. an on off switch, input sensors, feedback, etc.)
  • Exhibits MUST include a detailed build log with instructions on how to make or build the exhibit, AND contain either a 3D rendering or detailed and labeled sketches of the device/product.
  • All parts and software used in the design/build MUST be listed in a detailed Bill of Materials including cost per item and total cost. Total time spent on the build must be documented in your build log.

In addition, exhibitors are HIGHLY encouraged to use tools such as 3-D printers, laser cutters, routers and/or other hand/power tools to help in the manufacturing process (NOTE: Simply 3-D printing or laser cutting an object without the other specifications does not qualify as a Maker Project). It is also HIGHLY encouraged that exhibits use Open Source Software and/or Hardware in the build.