The junior program at the Massachusetts Rifle Association is one of the best in the State. The program instructs young boys and girls ages 11 to 18 on firearms safety and basic marksmanship with a .22 rifle. The juniors not only learn the proper and safe handling of a firearm they are also instructed on range safety. We begin at the end of October with a registration night where both juniors and their parents MUST attend. At that event we get to meet you and you get to learn about the MRA and the junior rifle program. You will be able to questions you may have before committing to the program. Each junior member is signed to one hour block of instruction in a group of 9. The blocks of time are 5pm to 6pm, 6 pm to7 pm, 7pm to 8pm and 8pm to 9pm. The program is segregated in this manner to provide individual attention to each junior and provide a way to move them forward quicker if that demonstrate an aptitude for the sport. Practice sessions are help Monday evenings in the Fazio range located upstairs in the facility.
The cost for the program is $40.00 per year. The program spams from late October through April. Practice sessions are not held during snow day, school vacations or holidays. During the program all rifles and ammunition are provided for the juniors by the MRA. Juniors are not allowed to use their own rifles unless they are part of the advanced program and have permission from the coach.
The program is a hands on learning and follows the NRA badge program for rifle marksmanship. This program allows the juniors to follow their progress while learning the 4 basic positions of rifle shooting. The positions are prone, offhand, kneeling and sitting. Juniors are moved along in their instructions as they show they have mastered that particular position. The shooting scores that juniors achieve while participating in the program are entered into their log sheets in order to track achievement, medals and badge they earn throughout the program year.
Juniors who demonstrate both interest and aptitude in their marksmanship skills may at the end of the program be asked to move up to the higher levels of participation in the advanced group. The advanced group practices 3 time a week, is responsible to purchase their own equipment and participate in local and national competitions. This summer members of the junior program traveled to Ohio, Alabama and Georgia. And, local states like Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York and Pennsylvania. The advanced team competes in both air rifle and small-bore rifle.
Our advanced junior program has won many State and National awards over the past 14 years and we hope to see this continue for many more. Our ultimate goal is to help any young man or women, who are interested in competition, to go on to the college or university of their choice as part of a collegiate team and hopefully sponsored with a scholarship.
We have had several junior members that have graduated and gone onto a Collegiate shooting program or have gone on and joined our military forces. We are very proud of each and every one of them.
We look forward to another great year with hopefully less snow.
Coach Maureen Trickett