Ten More Years of “The Grand” at Sparta

SPARTA, Ill. (AP) __ The granddaddy of U.S. shooting events will stay put at a sprawling southern Illinois complex for quite a bit longer.

The (Carbondale) Southern Illinoisan reports that the yearly Amateur Trapshooting Association’s Grand American championship will be held at the World Shooting and Recreation Complex near Sparta through 2026.

The group didn’t publicize the 10-year contract extension, but it was noted in the program for the Grand American event that’ll take place Aug. 3-13.

Illinois Department of Natural Resources Director Marc Miller says the 1,500-acre Randolph County complex contributes $25 million to the local economy each year, with the Grand American providing the biggest chunk.

The Grand American’s long line of competitors has included sharp shooter Annie Oakley in 1925 and movie and television cowboy Roy Rogers in 1959.

Information from: Southern Illinoisan, http://www.southernillinoisan.com

Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press

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