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In the last few years, many Americans purchased a gun for the first time. Without a shooting background, it’s difficult to find a place to shoot. Most parts of the country have adequate ranges but finding one that suits your needs takes some homework. While commercial ranges work well for training and an occasional shooting excursion, gun clubs offer a much better value if you plan to shoot a lot. If you choose the right gun club for your needs, you may find a great way to learn more about shooting while developing friendships that can last a lifetime. Modern gun clubs have become remarkably open with most putting efforts into recruiting women and youth shooters. Finding a club that suits your needs isn’t hard; you just need to know how to look.
What’s your interest? While some gun clubs have facilities that can accommodate any interest, most cater to certain groups. Often, older clubs offer more traditional shooting sports like NRA Conventional Pistol and Rifle competitions. Some clubs might focus around practical and tactical shooting and others are primarily or totally shotgun clubs or clubs based on junior shooters. Think about what you want to do and ask specific questions. If you’re new to shooting, maybe a large club that offers everything will work best; your interests are likely to evolve.
What’s it cost? A gun club that has more to offer might not cost as much as a smaller club with a more social feel. Larger gun clubs are often a bargain because a small percentage of club members use the club on a regular basis. Prices are often linked to amenities such as a clubhouse. In addition, pricing may be based on how much of the club’s work is done by members versus how much is hired out. Annual memberships can run as little as $100 and as much as $10,000. Many clubs also have an initiation fee to encourage members to stay in the club for the long term.
How do I know what the club is really like? With any club that holds public functions such as matches, it’s easy to see how the club works. Does the match director do all the work or do other members participate? Attend a meeting and listen to the conversations between club members to see how the club works as a team. Are the members friendly? If you simply want to shoot without an involvement in the workings of the club, check out the facilities and ask members what their responsibilities are. Some clubs require work days as part of membership. Of course, asking members is the best way to find out but ask more than one person if you expect to get a realistic answer.
Do I get involved? Getting involved in the workings of a gun club is as rewarding as becoming a great shooter. I’m a member of a club with 600 members yet we have only about 60 members at meetings and the core group of the club is less than that. Members at larger clubs often just want a place to shoot and have no interest in getting involved. It’s amazing how many times I go to that club and find myself the only person on the range. If you chose to get involved, you’re likely to make relationships that will last the rest of your life. Go to a few meetings and get to know some people; you may be amazed at how much fun it is to be involved while knowing you’re doing something for the future of the shooting sports.
A great way to tell if a gun club matches your needs is to visit when the club hosts the public such as sight in days.
Most modern clubs welcome women in all facets of the clubs activities.
A great way to tell if a gun club matches your needs is to visit their pulic events.
|New shooters can benefit from the knowledge of more experienced club members.||
You can find out a lot about a gun club by participating in one of their matches.
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