Environmental concerns prompts popular sportsmen's club to relocate

CUDAHY (WITI) -- A popular sportsmen's club will soon be kicked off of the land it leases from the county, and as you might expect, some are not so happy about it.

Gun shots peppered the air at the Cudahy Sportsmen's Club on a recent evening.

"We're the only trap shooting range in Milwaukee County," said Tom Ahmad, President of Cudahy Sportsmen's Club.

Formed in 1932, the club is now a popular hangout for a diverse range of clientele.

"This club has about 300 members, currently we have 50 plus kids on high school trap team," said Ahmad.

Members of the Cudahy Police Department also practice their skills on site. As do those preparing for a scene straight out of a movie.

"The Milwaukee County Zoo has a team that comes down here in the case of an animal escaping and they have to put the animal down," Ahmad said.

But at the end of this year, all of those folks will need to find somewhere else to shoot. The club leases the land from Milwaukee County, and the county is not renewing the lease this year because of environmental concerns.

"Those concerns include lead going into the lake, plastic wading some of the clay targets etc.," said Guy Smith, Milwaukee County Parks Chief of Operations.

By day, you can see how close the shooting range is to the lake.

"It is a very steep dropoff," said Smith.

Peering over the edge, you can see the large amount of shooting debris that has piled up.

"I know that it's been very hard for the sportsmen's club to be able to clean up some of the debris because it literally goes over the edge," said Smith.

FOX6 News is told that when debris seeps into the lake, it poses concerns for both wildlife and public health.

Some still hope appeals to county officials will save the club. President Tom Ahmad, says they've seen an outpouring of support from the community, and adds that the club helps bolster the local economy.

"Many of the teams come here and then they go to local bars, restaurants and you know partake after the shooting," said Ahmad.

FOX6 News is told that the Milwaukee County Parks department is open to helping the club find another location for its operation, saying it is strictly environmental concerns that are prompting this move.