Saturday was an amazing day. All across the country, families were shooting together, having fun and learning safe gun handling. Some were experienced, some were new to shooting, but they shared the huge smiles!
I want to express my sincere appreciation to all of the host ranges, the volunteers, the sponsors and most off all to the families who came out and participated. You all are the ones who made this day possible. From a short post on FaceBook at the end of January to an event nationwide, with 37 ranges and hundreds of families, if not more…that is awe inspiring.
A few words about my local event which I co-hosted with my co-founder, Evan Carson if Innovative Defensive Solutions (http://www.innovativesolutions.com/). Evan was in charge on the range, and if you have ever met him, that was the perfect place for him. He is a very experienced instructor, competitive shooter and CRSO. Most of the instructors came from the cadre of adjuncts that work with IDS, and between them brought more guns and donated ammunition than we could actually use in half a day.
I was with the greeters, even though I’m a certified instructor, that was where I felt most needed. I had some great support, including Laura (Evan’s wife), Shelby (of A Girl and Her Gun) and Dick Heller (yes, that Dick Heller, of Heller vs. DC). We greeted the families, checked them against the preregistration, got the kids set up with prizes and give aways, got them through their range tests and safety briefs and escorted them onto the range to a waiting instructor. I saw excitement and nerves heading out. When them came off the range, most stopped to talk for a minute, or were invited to partake of some of the treats set up for them in a nearby classroom. I saw smiles, and excitement, and little girls who couldn’t wait to show me their pink targets so I could tell them what a great job they did.
I did have a chance to go out on the line for a few minutes in the first hour, to see how it was going. I saw proud parents, I saw little girls shooting for the first time with no fear and having a fabulous time. I saw instructors grinning almost as wide as the kids! Frankly, I got a little choked up. It was everything I had hoped it would be and so much more.
I heard from one of the hosts in Texas, it was the gentleman’s daughter’s birthday. When she got home, she said the best part was getting to have one on one time with Daddy! Wow.
If you have time, check out the FaceBook page, National Take Your Daughter to the Range Day, and take a look at some of the pictures from across the country. They are so fun!
I can’t wait for next year! 3rd Sat in Jun! Mark your Calendars. But, don’t wait until Jun, there are youth programs through the NRA, 4H and Appleseed, to name a few, that specialize in teaching kids. Learn, go to the range together, have fun!
Thank you all and Safe Shooting!