Dozens of donors and volunteers are doing their best to make sure law enforcement, firefighters and military personnel in KELOLAND feel appreciated. Today kicked off the annual South Dakota Salutes shooting competition at Hunter’s Pointe in Humboldt. 

There isn’t a quiet spot at Hunter’s Pointe this week.

“It’s a big expense. It’s nice that they do that for us. It’s huge. It just goes to show that South Dakota cares about their first responders, their military people,” Murphy said. 

Events today include pistol and rifle competitions and sporting clays. 

Though this is only the second annual salute event, David Glover with the Air National Guard says it’s a new tradition he looks forward to each year.  

“This is our first time getting the guns out for the year. This is a good, exciting day because that means hunting season is here. So when we get the guns out for South Dakota Salutes, that means, in a month it’s pheasant season. In two months it’s deer season. It just gets everything rolling. It’s a nice way to start the season,” Glover said. 

Former Showplace Wood Products CEO Tony Bour organizes the two-day shoot as a way to show appreciation to men and women who put their lives on the line for their South Dakota communities. 

“The best, the finest. It just makes you feel so good. It really does,” Bour said.

On top of free range time, food and beverages are provided and trophies will be handed out to the top teams and individuals. 

“Around here I think the community treats our law enforcement really well. Around the nation, I don’t think so. I don’t think they get the recognition they deserve,” Glover said. 

As South Dakota Salutes grows, Bour hopes the idea catches on across the country. 

“I hope it spreads. I hope it spreads statewide, I hope it spreads to other states. That would be a real goal for me,” Bour said. 

South Dakota Salutes has put $50,000 into a trust to help families who have lost loved ones in the line of duty.