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GASTONIA, N.C. (AP) - A North Carolina city has set aside $150,000 that could be used to buy hundreds of acres for a public shooting park.

The Gaston Gazette reports that noise from Gastonia's current rifle and pistol range is bothering visitors to the adjacent Rankin Lake Park. Council members have previously considered reducing the hours at the Gastonia Skeet and Trap Range, but that was voted down a year ago.

Councilwoman Brenda Craig says the popular shooting range is also reaching capacity.

She says the city needs to buy at least 250 acres for a shooting park that includes eight skeet fields and could host tournaments.

Craig says the park could attract area residents who don't have a public, outdoor place where they can go shoot.

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