Northampton Revolver Club’s ‘turkey shoot’ raises money to help curb veterans’ suicide

For the Gazette
Published: 11/10/2016 8:56:37 PM

NORTHAMPTON — Concerned with the number of veterans who commit suicide in this country, members of the Northampton Revolver Club are raising money every Sunday this fall through its turkey shoot fundraisers to give to a national charity that provides resources to address the issue.

But first a disclaimer — no turkeys are harmed in the making of this event, which involves target practice.

The club has had turkey shoots every Sunday since Sept. 18 and plans to hold their last of the season on Nov. 20. Money raised is being donated to Active Heroes Aiming for Zero, a national charity that raises awareness and funds to end veteran suicide.

“I have friends who went over and came back and their lives have been changed forever, and if we can do something to make their lives easier and a little better, we owe it to them,” said Alan Gliniak, one of the event’s organizers.

Turkey shoots are held at the club, 519 Ryan Road, with gates opening at 11 a.m. and shooting starting at noon.

The public events consist of each participant taking a shot at a piece of paper with a shotgun, and the person with the closest gage to the center wins a prize.

The prize is usually a turkey, ham, or something along those lines. When staff win a round, they make a donation to the charity that is a cash equivalent to the prize.

Money is raised at the event through these donations, a general donation can and the money people pay per round to shoot.

So far this year, the turkey shoots have raised around $1,000.

In addition, Smith & Wesson, where Gliniak is an employee, has offered to match up to $1,000 in funds, and Rock Valley Tool in Easthampton has promised to match up to $500.

The club chose Active Heroes Aiming for Zero because Gliniak used to be a competitive shooter for the organization, and because the cause has become a personal one after a veteran he used to shoot with took his own life.

Gliniak said that charities like Active Heroes Aiming for Zero are important because they provide veterans with the vital resources that they need.

“You have 22 returning veterans committing suicide a day, that’s unacceptable,” said Gliniak.

Timothy Messer, who is on the club’s board of directors, said that the turkey shoots were the entire club’s idea. The organization is made up of about 260 people.

Messer said that the event is a fun way to support an extremely significant charity.

“They took the time out of their lives to serve our country, so we can do something for them. There’s no reason we can’t do something for them,” he said.


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