SPARTA, Ill. (AP) — Target shooting has become an economic engine for the southern Illinois community of Sparta, where a shooting and recreation complex was established in 2006.

The World Shooting and Recreation Complex attracts about 15,000 people daily in August during the 10-day Grand American Trap Shooting Championships. Complex executive director Art Ashbrook says as a result, the area gets a $10 million economic boost.

Sparta Chamber of Commerce Director Tori Paultler says because lodging is in high demand, town residents open their houses to visitors. He says retailers and restaurants also reap rewards from the championship.

The (Carbondale) Southern Illinoisan reports ( recreational shooting drives the complex the rest of the year. There are estimates that as many as 2 million visitors annually visit Randolph County because of the shooting complex.


Information from: Southern Illinoisan,

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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