Where to Trapshoot in Kansas City with Teens, Tweens

The rise of tweens and teens seeking sports outside the traditional football, soccer, basketball, volleyball route has been on a steady incline for the last several years. Archery, trapshooting and fishing are just a few activities that were once meant for adult, outdoor enthusiasts, but now are being offered in schools both large and small across Missouri and Kansas.

The goal is to expose children to a more robust set of skills and allow them to enjoy the outdoors, all without the pressure of uber-competitive, traveling teams meant for only the most elite athletes. Colleges are even handing out full-ride scholarships in these more non-traditional endeavors!

What is so wonderful about a sport such as trapshooting is that kids who have elected to leave the more aggressive sports behind can find a lot of solace and success in these more outlying hobbies and interests. If this is something your child might want to pursue, there are several options in the Kansas City area offering lessons, rentals, leagues, competitions and a park to practice. 

What You Need to Know about the Trapshoot Sport

  • Trapshooting is one of three major disciplines of competitive clay target shooting, the others being skeet and sporting clays. In trapshooting, clay targets are launched from one “house,” which is generally away from the shooter. In skeet shooting, targets are launched from two houses in somewhat sideways paths that intersect in front of the shooter. Sporting clays involve a more complex shooting course with many launch points.
  • The idea of a child holding a gun can be very scary and unnerving. For this reason, it is important to take a hunter safety course before beginning. Missouri requires both an online and in person test for 11-15 year olds. Kansas offers a two-day, in person course. Here they will learn safety as well as important conservation issues. 
  • A seasoned instructor is key to enforcing safety and teaching proper technique. Inquire about experience and coaching styles at courses before arriving. Remember, the first and most important goal in trapshooting is keeping everyone safe. 
  • Several area schools now offer trapshooting as a club or sport. Most of the time this means the school will provide free access to ranges and important instruction. 
  • You do not have to own a gun to participate. Most facilities have rentals they loan, which they verify are clean and safe to use. 
  • Size, stature and age have zero to do with potential of success in the sport. A 13-year-old girl can successfully compete against an 18-year-old male, and it may be a toss up on who wins. Instead, the important aspects in trapshooting are: respect for safety, manners, discipline, concentration and ability to block out distractions. 
  • Missouri is home to the most robust and impressive Conservation Department in the country. It has the means to fund non-traditional sports like archery and trapshooting and provide children across the state wonderful ways to learn the sport in a safe manner, compete and be very successful. Take advantage of this amazing resource! 

Where to Trapshoot in Kansas City

Powder Creek Shooting Park

Located just 20 minutes from downtown Kansas City, Powder Creek Shooting Park stands as one of the premier destinations for clay shooting and trapshooting in the region. With its well-maintained facilities it offers shooters a variety of options, including sporting clays, trap, and skeet shooting. The park features multiple courses designed to challenge shooters of all levels, from beginners to seasoned veterans. Powder Creek does not provide rentals, shooter must provide appropriate shotgun. There are, however, several qualified instructors, ready to provide beginner lessons for those interested. Throughout the year they hold registered competitive shooting events, fun shoots and league competitions. 

They also host the KC Crushers, a youth program whose mission is to provide a shooting foundation focused on building fundamental skills and gun safety. The team offers a place for kids to fit in, build self-confidence, and develop the mental skills needed to be successful in life. They welcome student athletes aged elementary through college.

Lake Lotawana Sportsmen’s Club

Situated on over 60 acres, the Lake Lotawana Sportsmen’s Club offers a tranquil setting for clay shooting and trapshooting. It features multiple shooting ranges, including trap fields and a sporting clays course that winds through wooded areas and open fields. It has four lit trap fields that utilize a voice activated target release system. ​Multiple range guns are available for use at the club, allowing those who are not owners to utilize those owned by LLSC. They also are more than happy to provide private instruction and classes! 

KCTA – Kansas City Trap Association

For those passionate about the sport, the Kansas City Trap Association (KCTA) stands out as a popular destination. It is open to the public, but offers membership for a small fee, which allows for discounts throughout the year. Those under 18 can purchase a membership for $50. If you plan on shooting at least 40 rounds of 25 targets throughout the year, the membership pays for itself. The association hosts regular competitions and events, providing opportunities for both friendly competition and skill development. 

Saddle & Sirloin Club and Pioneer Gun Clubs are private facilities that require a membership and annual fee to join, much like a country club. I would not recommend these businesses unless your child has many years of experience. 

A Note From a Fellow Mom

In full transparency, six months ago I would never have written a post promoting the idea of a child taking up the sport of trapshooting. Even growing up in the country, with brothers who hunted, the notion of a child shooting gives me a lot of anxiety.

After three years of exposure to school-sponsored archery, my view began to shift a little on the idea of my own child safely using these types of weapons. I saw first hand the intensity my son had when competing, the pride he took in his success and the over abundance of caution the instructors, coaches and teachers used when practicing and competing.

Now that he has also taken up trapshooting, I can see his confidence blooming. This child, who doesn’t have an aggressive bone in his body, often felt heartache at the baseball mound and on the flag football field. Thanks to archery and trapshooting he has found his niche. They have sparked an even greater interest in school. He has found friends with similar interests and personalities. And I am of the camp that if there is something that makes my child love school and find success, as long as it is safe and healthy, then I am all in as well. 

Not to mention, after trying it a few times myself…It’s SO FUN!

Kristin Ruthstrom
Kristin is a Lee’s Summit suburb transplant, after living in the Brookside and Plaza areas for over eight years. Raising three young boys with her husband, Jake, has helped her to embrace the messy, wild side of life where love is expressed in bear hugs and body slams. Professionally, she can be found teaching classes as an adjunct professor in the areas of Business, Marketing and PR. She is able to provide her students with applicable, real-life knowledge as she draws from several years working in the corporate sector. “Free time” (ha!, what's that again?) is spent on an occasional date night to favorite local restaurants, reading blogs on everything from home design to politics, riding her sweet beach cruiser bike and thinking of ways to convince her husband to do yet another home improvement project.


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