Over the past six years I have truly been blessed to meet so many great people through the shooting sports. There has been a lull in shooting major matches since the World Speed Shoot. In addition the club that got me into shooting Steel Challenge, which has hosted some of the largest level I and level II matches in the country suddenly called it quits. This has spurred me and several others to get back to why we compete, it is not only winning (that is fun too!), but to spend time with our friends. Some we have known for many years and I always look forward to meeting new ones out on the range.
A couple weeks ago Chris Barrett and myself decided to meet up at a range we don’t shoot often, it has been three years since I last shot there. I texted one of our Steel Target Paint team members Teddie Gartman and he brought two of his kids. When we arrived, it reminded me of the days of when the Steel Target Paint Shooting team first started. A small local match with friends and family. To my surprise, I saw Allan Owens, one of the OGs of Rimfire in the North Atlanta area and first members of the Steel Target Paint Shooting team.
The first match I shot with him six years ago he had to meet the person who barely edged him out. This time was truly amazing. Alan was there with his amazing wife Diana, their daughter and their three grandkids. It was inspiring to see three generations of one family enjoying a Sunday afternoon at the range. Not a single person without a smile on their face.
Each of us looks for something out of the shooting sports. Some of us are ultra competitive and want to do our best at every match we shoot. For some of us it is about connecting with our families. Some of us like to spend time with our friends. After all, I have never met a stranger out on the range. There is something for everyone. If you are waivering about taking someone to the range, just go ahead and do it. I have not walked away from a range session thinking, “I wish I didn’t do that”.
See you out on the range soon!