Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Gun club fired up over hobby

College shooting sports and clubs, not something you hear about during the sports portion of the evening news. Sanctioned teams are out there, competing at levels just as significant as the ball related sports we watch each weekend. See one of my earlier posts here highlighting a member of the Texas Christian University Women's Air Rifle Team.

A somewhat new wave on college campuses is the formation of shooting clubs. These clubs are more casual than the teams, and are open to any who want to participate and learn about firearms. One such club is the UNC Tar Heel Rifle and Pistol Club. As reported in the Herald Sun:

CHAPEL HILL -- Officers of UNC's Tar Heel Rifle and Pistol Club grew up firing guns.

Club president Dax Dixson, of Pikesville, started target shooting when he was 4 and, as a teenager, began entering competitions for firing military surplus rifles.

Vice president John Houston, of Garner, said he was like "the little kid from the movie that always wanted a Red Ryder," which is a popular type of BB gun.

And on the Pinnacle farm where Dwight Springthorpe grew up, hunting was used for pest control.

"You can't let the coyotes eat the sheep," the UNC sophomore said.

The three aim to share their interest with other Carolina students through the rifle and pistol club, which was formed last fall.
This is cool, and a great way to introduce college students to firearms and firearm safety.

The 60 or so group members travel to local ranges to try out hobbies like skeet shooting and rifle and pistol marksmanship. Most of the members of the club have never shot guns before, so officers place a big emphasis on safety and technique.

"We focus on teaching people how to use firearms without shooting one another," said Dixson, a UNC senior.

Instead of being overtly political, the club is mostly about fun and education, officers said.
The best way to insure our firearm freedoms continue is to take folks out to the range. Providing a save and enjoyable shooting experience for a person who is not sure about firearms will do more towards helping our cause than any amount of debate.

These shooting clubs are popping up on college campuses all over the country. Harvard, Duke and MIT are just a few of the colleges that have shooting clubs.

You can read the article in it's entirety here.


Anonymous said...

I live several miles from the UF campus in Gainesville, Florida, and for a while was having fun with lending a hand with students who were beginning shooters. The school is of course as leftwing as one can imagine, and while meeting the kids was swell, even being on the same planet with most of their "teachers" was hell.


Anonymous said...

Are there shooting sports in the Olympics?

John R said...

Yes Ma'am, in both the summer and winter Olympics.

Anonymous said...

Makes sense.

Anonymous said...

I'm kinda riding on the line of these things. I took a large group of students from my sister's track team to the range for a day. We brought every firearm I own, a couple borrowed, and a couple rented. We had semi-auto's, bolt actions, shotguns, .22's and pistols. Everyone got to shoot at their level of comfort and fun. 99% were first time shooters who were happy for the chance. A few were fervant anti-gunners who had the grace and guts to give it a try.

That said, when I return for some classes at my local community college I may try to start such a club.

Anonymous said...

Semi-auto? What's the point?

John R said...

Jared; Good for you. I led the high school youth group at our church in CA. It became a monthly event to head out to the range. We had firearms donated from all kinds of folks for these kids to shoot. They had a blast, they learned firearm safety, and they no longer held firearms as some mystical objects. Pretty much any type of firearm they wanted to shoot was available. Their favorite was my M1 Carbine. It was cool, and it had little or no kick (unlike the .375 H&H that made an appearance once)

Once you get your club organized, be sure to visit local gun shops and ask for sponsorships, that will really help with ammo.

Mudkitty: "Semi-auto? What's the point?" Ma'am, you really need to get out to a range. I may be able to find some folks that will be willing to spend time with you.

Anonymous said...

Hey, I'm all for sport.

Anonymous said...

Although I prefer "dance."