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Old September 17, 2008, 02:23 PM   #1
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How did you get started

Did most of the competitors here get started on a school team?

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Old September 17, 2008, 03:10 PM   #2
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I didn't. I grew up with parents who had the "not in my house" attitude toward guns. I kept a series of BB guns hidden from them over the years and shot them in the basement.
It wasn't until I was grown, had a family and moved to that pariah of gun ownership cities - New York, Brooklyn to be specific - that gun ownership and shooting competition became a reality
One day after moving into our new digs, I was walking about the neighborhood and came upon a building with the sign "Metropolitan Rod and Gun Club, est. 1934". It was and is in the middle of two historic residential districts. Who would have thought? A pistol range in a brownstone neighborhood in NYC. The mind boggled
That's when it occurred to me that maybe it was not impossible to own firearms in the Big Apple. I applied for a pistol permit. After a wait, it was issued (if one is not a felon, they have to give it to ya.) Then I joined Metro R&G which had an active group of Bullseye competitors shooting in a city-wide pistol league. I had found a shooting home. Lots of matches - galleries, 900s, 2700s, air pistol, International, rifle - followed and continue.
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Old September 17, 2008, 03:36 PM   #3
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Nope. I don't know of any schools in my area that had teams in any shooting sport, although there are several youth organizations doing good things with the shotgun sports now (but not affiliated with schools.)

This is an area with a lot of guns, but we're more likely to be shooting at squirrels, deer or tin cans on the back 40 than doing anything with rules. I didn't fire a round in any kind of competition until after I turned 30.
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Old September 17, 2008, 10:41 PM   #4
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Not me. I got started (in compitition) after shooting skeet and trap. I got an injured hand and recoil got to me. I had some insurance and with my first check I bought a M1A. I found a highpower match (100 yard reduced) and shot it. I was in the AK NG and met another NG. We got to talking and desided we were going to take over the AKNG Marksmanship unit. The AKNG MTU was pretty much non-existant. Just on paper. They had some equipment but they made hard to get a hold of. I was kind of (pushy) and bullied my way into getting in charge of the equipment. We put our first team together and headed to the WP Wilson NG Championships. That was in 1978. We sent teams to the Wilson matches every year until I got out in 1992. We had a pretty good program when I left but I've heard it went to hell. I still shoot highpower and bullseye pistol but sure miss the NG shooting.

(I'm assuming Kraig meant to say he was kind of "pushy" since the other way didn't make as much sense.)
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Last edited by Don Gwinn; October 29, 2008 at 03:33 PM. Reason: Spelling error.
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Old September 17, 2008, 11:44 PM   #5
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No. I'd taken it up on my own ( HP, BE and dabbling in AP and Free Pistol). The High Schools in my region used to have smallbore teams, but no longer do.

It seems that most of the people that I shoot with are self-starters. There are actually a good number of young people (e.g. 18 and younger) who participate in the BE circuit that I compete in, but they all come with a parent who shoots as well.
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Old September 19, 2008, 12:18 AM   #6
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Shot on the HS ROTC smallbore rifle team. Of course, it was much cooler then since the last ice age was just ending and the glaciers were still receding. Shot club skeet during college, and started NSSA skeet 25-years later. Some ATA trap a few years after that. I had to take some time away from shooting to focus on my career and family.
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Old September 19, 2008, 12:57 AM   #7
B. Lahey
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I started shooting in competition in a private club. Knights of DeMolay.

We beat the snot out of a lot of ROTC, school, and club teams, went to Perry a few times, shot international events a few times a year, all the fun stuff.

It was better than football. All the fun of organized sport, none of the injuries.

Last edited by B. Lahey; September 19, 2008 at 05:28 AM.
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Old September 24, 2008, 03:45 PM   #8
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The Scholastic Shooting Trust was started so that people could support school teams. If you get a chance, please visit the website.
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Old September 26, 2008, 09:29 AM   #9
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Lahey, you make an excellent point. If I'd spent my high-school and college years shooting instead of knocking people over, my knees, ankles, shoulder and neck would be much more normal. But a hole in a piece of paper just isn't the same as a truly ruthless and violent hit.
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Old September 26, 2008, 11:58 AM   #10
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I shot at the local indoor range, NRA Jr Smallbore (not really competition).

In college, I shot pistol on the NROTC smallbore team and rifle on the University smallbore team (burning free ammo four days a week).

About 10 years after I graduated, I bought an M1A and started shooting Highpower at the local club.
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Old September 26, 2008, 12:48 PM   #11
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I was raised around guns, and then joined the Marines. When I was offered the opportunity to try out for the shooting team in the service, I jumped at it. Later, I shot smallbore match in college, then Service Rifle and CMP in club matches.
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Old September 26, 2008, 11:40 PM   #12
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"...on a school team..." A what? A local school board's "education director" refused a $5,000 donation for a high school drama club from a local gun club that ran a fund raising shoot specifically for the drama club, just this past week. The rectal orifice decided he didn't think guns should be associated with schools. There have been lots of calls for his dismissal or resignation.
Started hunting at 17 with no help from anybody. Got into League ISU pistol shooting several years later. Played at plates and pins. Never had the time or money to get serious though.
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Old October 28, 2008, 02:52 PM   #13
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I was frequenting my local range and as got to know the regular shooters they invited me to shoot in their bullseye league. That was 35 years ago and I'm still shooting bullseye!
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Old October 28, 2008, 07:12 PM   #14
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I got into shooting IDPA as a result of an attempted home invasion that left me realizing how little about guns, gun handling or shooting I actually knew. After being into shooting pretty hardcore for a year I know more than I did and realize I know very little in the big picture...but I'm working on it.
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Old October 28, 2008, 10:35 PM   #15
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Started competition with HS JROTC. Nothing spending your first hour of the day at school on a range!

But I started shooting at 5 with a BB gun. My dad was on an Air Force pistol team at that time, so I guess some of it's in the blood.
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Old October 29, 2008, 07:31 AM   #16
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I sort of got started on a team - when I was in college, I shot on the school's NRA Collegiate Bullseye team. I was okay, but I did manage to learn a lot about the fundamentals of shooting. After college I messed around a bit with cowboy shooting, but then for a while all I did was just plink around until about this year, when I got heavily involved in IDPA, USPSA, and Bowling Pin shooting. Once I got those into my head, it was pretty much game on. Next thing you know I've got 1911s all over my house and I'm looking at getting a revolver built or building my own 1911.

The thing about competition is that if you're the kind of person who enjoys shooting for score, it's like crack.
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Old October 29, 2008, 08:57 AM   #17
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The first exposure I had to competitive shooting was in high school, but not through the school. It was through the Explorer Scouts - one of the activities was going through a bullseye course of fire on the police range. Thought it was pretty cool and did pretty well.

Wasn't until many years later I saw the local Bass Pro was holding an informal bullseye league. Participated in that for a couple consecutive years, then took the plunge and tried sanctioned NRA matches. I'd say the experience at Bass Pro was what really got me hooked.
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Old November 4, 2008, 07:39 AM   #18
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I never paid any attention to shooting when I was in high school, although as I recall we had a pretty good ROTC rifle team.

When I bought my first gun, several years later, I was buying ammo at a sporting goods store and the owner told me that there was a local group who met once a month for informal matches. I tried it and was hooked. I ended up winning a match one month, and I still have that trophy on my wall in my office.

I also came in second about four times, thanks to one miss. That sucked. Funny, I still can't miss fast enought to win.
I call that bold talk for a one-eyed fat man.

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