After 50 years, Middleburgh Rod & Gun looks to community for help with building work
By Patsy Nicosia
After 50 years of being part of everything from the Cub Scouts to Eddie Eagle to the Fields of Grace 5K, the Middleburgh Rod and Gun Club is looking to its friends and alumni for help in repairing the building that houses its indoor archery range.
Estimates for the work are still coming in, but could range from $30,000-$40,000 to the sky’s the limit.
“The cost is in limbo right now,” said Middleburgh Rod and Gun Club President Joe Kopacz.
“For a 50-year-old structure, the building’s structurally in good shape. But there are some issues we want to head off. We want to make sure it’s there for everyone who uses it—and there are a lot.”
Members want to jack up the archery building—originally built by the Schoharie County Archers as a pavilion and then added to over time—six feet, replace the support posts, and cut the floor back two feet so contractors can put in new footing.
Other upgrades and improvements might be required to meet code, Mr. Kopacz said, and that’s where the unknown costs come in.
Though it’s a not-for-profit, Middleburgh Rod and Gun is pursuing non-profit status, something that would make it eligible to apply for grants—but that’s a long and expensive process, Mr. Kopacz said.
Until then and to help fund the repairs, the club has a couple of fundraisers going on, including one for a four-wheeler with tickets available at Middleburgh Hardware, NAPA, and Middle Village Pasta & Grill.
They’re also selling booster stickers for $10.
Contact Mr. Kopacz at (518) 813-7024 for more information or to make a donation toward the work.
“We’ve always been a community-minded group,” Mr. Kopacz said.
“With everyone’s help, we can continue to partner with the Schoharie County community and beyond.”
And though he’s sure he’s missed some, those partnerships have included helping Scouts meet badge qualifications and exposing them to archery; supporting Eagle Scout projects and hosting ceremonies; hosting archery programs for SUNY Cobleskill and the Christian Bowhunters, and safety classes for hunters, bowhunters, and trappers.
In addition, the club hosts 4-H clubs and safety classes, a youth fishing derby, archery day, and a youth archery program.
It’s a place for DEC officers to meet firearms training requirements and also hosts the Eddie Eagle gun safety program.
Additionally, members volunteer with the ambulance squad and fire department, Fields of Grace events, the New York Power Authority’s Wildlife Festival and the Middleburgh Kayak Run.
They support high school and college scholarships and scholarships to DEC’s Camp Colby, and members are involved with the Delanson YMCA, SCOPE, Schoharie County Conservation Council, the venison donation program, Whitetails Unlimited, and an annual youth accountability workshop.
“We don’t turn anyone away,” Mr. Kopacz added.
“Now, we hope those who’ve enjoyed the many programs, events, and facilities here, plus those who’ve benefited from the charitable spirit of our members will help us.”