decorative image of DayOfClays2019-0147 , 2020 Day of Clays scheduled for Oct. 3 at Santa Rosa Shooting Center 2020-08-20 08:01:47 Published: 08-20-2020

Mary Mabins, Pensacola State College

When Marissa Greene enrolled in Pensacola State College in Fall 2019, a scholarship helped pay for her education.

“I had received a Pell Grant that covered some of the tuition, but the scholarship covered the rest of my classes, fees and all of the materials I needed,” said the 2018 Pine Forest High graduate.

Greene is one of the many PSC students who are able to continue their educations thanks to the generosity of donors and fundraisers. This fall, the PSC Foundation is preparing for its only live event – the Day of Clays ─ set for Saturday, Oct. 3, at the Santa Rosa Shooting Center in Pace.

Presented by Trane, the sporting clays event begins registration at 7:30 a.m. with an 8:45 a.m. safety orientation and 9 a.m. start. Proceeds from the event support PSC students and programs through the Fund for Excellence.

Sporting clays is the closest thing to actual field shooting of all shotgun sports. Rather than having clay birds thrown from standardized distances and angles as with skeet or trap, sporting clay courses are designed to simulate the hunting of ducks, pheasants, other upland birds, and even rabbits.

Students like Greene, who has a 3.9 grade point average and works 30 to 40 hours a week at Target, are the primary beneficiaries of fundraisers like the Day of Clays, said Pensacola businessman Ron Jackson, chairman for the event.

“The Day of Clays is for a great cause – it provides scholarships for Pensacola State students, helps them further their education and improves their lives,” he said.

“It’s a fun event that rallies people together and helps students who need assistance reaching their educational dreams and career goals.”

More than $90,000 was raised at the 2019 Day of Clays and that support allowed the PSC Foundation to support student success.

Evan Helinski, with presenting sponsor, Trane, described the fundraiser as “not only a fun-packed day but also a great opportunity to invest in the education of our future generations.”

“The company values its partnership with Pensacola State College and firmly believes post-secondary education is an important aspect of growth within the local community,” he said. “Trane remains committed to helping our community thrive by continuing to sponsor the PSC Foundation.”

Sponsorship opportunities are still available for donors who can’t participate this year but wish to support the College by donating toward textbooks, program support or scholarships.

Greene, a graphic technology major, eventually plans to earn her bachelor’s degree in graphic design. “Your support with school supplies and academic fees this semester really made my year. I cannot tell you how grateful I am to receive this scholarship. This support will help me confidently complete my first year of college. Thank you to everyone that made school possible for me this semester. You are the real heroes,” she said.

The 2020 event promises to be a day to enjoy a form of clay pigeon shooting often described as “golf with a shotgun.” Sporting clays simulate the unpredictability of live-quarry shooting, and offer a great variety of trajectories, angles, speeds, elevations, distances and target sizes.

Lunch and an awards ceremony will immediately follow the shoot. Lunch is sponsored by Chet’s Seafood, Morette Company and The Lewis Bear Company.
Call 850-484-1564 or visit https://foundation.pensacolastate.edu/annual-day-of-clays/ for more information on the Day of Clays.

PHOTO: PSC employee Greg Oliver, from left, is pictured with Trane team members Steve Johnson, Evan Helinski and Ken Jankowski during the 2019 Day of Clays fundraiser. The 2020 event is set for Oct. 3 at the Santa Rosa Shooting Center in Pace.

Day of Clays safety protocols:

Because this is an outdoor event, the PSC Foundation is offering the following ways to help protect participants:

  • Santa Rosa Shooting Center will sanitize all shooting stations prior to the event
  • Hand sanitizers will be available at each station
  • Masks will be provided, if needed
  • To help with social distancing, each team will launch clays and keep their own scores
  • Breakfast and lunch will be served according to local health and CDC guidelines that are in place at that time