Keeping Our Clubs Alive Article in MB

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WOW, what an article I just read in the October 2022 issue ( page 14-16 ) of Muzzle Blast.

Page 1.jpeg


The things written in this article is the main reason why I seldom attend organized shoots. Most of you know I really could care less whether I win, lose or draw.....I'm just out there for the shooting fun. Others may not look at matches the same as I do.

Peter Allen writes:

"This is actually a way of guaranteeing that the low
class shooter will never get anything, including the desire to shoot another match."

page 2.jpeg


WOW, that's the harsh reality of the truth. I've talked to shooters that has been to club shoots where they are shooting at a 9" gong targets at 100 yards away. Geez....I can barely see a small target out that far, let alone hit it. Am I likely to attend another shoot at that club?? Probably not, because we know the best shooters usually wins.

I had an wise shooter once tell me:

If you are hosting an 18 target woods walk:

* 6 of those targets should be easy enough that a novice shooter could hit them.
* 6 of those targets should be of medium size so the average shooter can hit them.
* 6 targets can be tough so the experienced shooter can hit them.

That would be a VERY fair woods walk course than anyone could attempt & feel good about trying.

Outside of the WoodsWalk match at Friendship, I've only been to 2 matches with local clubs in the 10 years I've been shooting.
I've read about how tough the matches are at certain clubs & decide not to attend. I did try one last year at the Boones Trace M/L Club where the shooters were given exactly 1.25 oz ( I think ) of #6 shot to load in your smoothbore. The shot was at 40 yards into a 9" paper plate. The # of holes counted in that plate was your score. That's a fun match that anyone can feel good about attempting.

So...where am I going with this?

If you're interested in shooting paper...why not put a 100 yard target out to 40 yards & count a score based off an equal number of shots? This way...even the newest shooter feels he has a chance. Lets face it, shooting zeros will almost guarantee that shooter would not come back. Another potential member -- lost.

The last page of the article puts a different perspective to the story:

page 3.jpeg


Check out the 2 photos. For kicks giggles & grins, the shooter puts some 50 yard targets at 25 yards. Taking several different targets and placing them on top of each other, the respective shooting earned the shooter a score of 10 on the squirrel. He received a score of 43 on the other target. WOW, that's big difference! New shooters are inclined to return with scores like that.

I'm in 110% agreement of this article. If the hosts would make the targets easier to shoot for a newcomer, the chances of the new shooter coming to your event is much better. Do whatever it takes to keep your shooters coming back. The Boones Trace Muzzleloading Club in eastern KY changes their format every time they shoot. Their matches are designed so anyone can win or in my case...at least place.

I like how the article is summed up:

Heed those words written 50 years ago by Peter Allen:

"There are a lot of ways of building up clubs into a big happy family,
but making it tough for the shooters is not of the ways."

page 3..jpeg



Something to think about.....
 
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Dutch7

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I've been involved in a few BP clubs and I guess maybe it never occurred to me that I needed to win to want to come back and shoot, I just like shooting and if the same two guys always win so be it, I just need to improve my skills and try to take a target or two from them - maybe that's just me.
Now I am all about having fun and if fun is what is needed to keep clubs alive then we need to have FUN targets to shoot at and for paper matches perhaps a handicap system so everyone has the same chance, anyone ever try this with success?
One shoot I have attended is a turkey style shoot with 10 rounds fired one at a time and scored, the winner of round one is now handicapped a point and so on the the rest of the rounds so a marginal shooter can still win - it is fun and for me I shoot for groups on that night to see if I can get a personal best.

anyways - everyone needs to shoot and bring someone new into the sport as often as possible, encouragement goes a long ways too to getting someone to return to your club, if they don't feel like they "fit in" or are unwelcome then that is the biggest problem with any organization, my .02 cents
 

jdw276

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I design and run the shoots at the Talking Rock BP shooters. I do not care what yardage the target was designed to be shot at. I care about the content of the target. I vary the targets each month. Sometimes small and tough, sometimes large and easier. We are competing within ourselves.hitting a 100 yd bullseye target at 50 yards is hitting a bullseye. Shooting a 50 yd target at 25 yards is ok as long as everyone is shooting the same target. At least everyone can see it if everyone is shooting the same target. We are not submitting it to win a state or national championship. Who cares, hit the target and have pride in yourself getting to be a better shot.

I have 5 different sizes of steel plates. 10" down to 3". Three sizes of bowling pins. Top, bottom, full pins. Vary em each month, easy to hard. They never know what I am putting out and most if not all like that bit of mystery when they get there.

Our range is limited to 50 yards distance and most of us old guys have trouble seeing that far. It is more bout friendship and fellowship with a hint of competing within yourself. If you cannot see the target you are wasting lead. You would not shoot it if you cannot see it hunting so why when you are practicing. Our group is growing. We even have a bench grooup to shoot the same targets and enjoy the friendship and fellowship with all.
 
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Went to Friendship the first time last Summer. Now I am not a new guy,I am 68 years old, competed in the military, been shooting muzzle loaders 50 years and not easily discouraged. The camper next to us took me to all the ranges and showed me the ropes, very nice of him. I shot in the woods walk and had a blast. Beat all the others in my relay by one shot, they were very welcoming to a new/old guy.
One thing I noticed was the firing line was completely full of vehicles even though only a few people were shooting. He pointed out that the cars were parked there before the first day and never moved until after the shoot. I can understand the ease of having all your gear there when you want it but it seems a little unwelcoming to anyone new. Like "Here is where you shoot, but you can't park here with all your stuff, even though the position is empty". I doubt even the top shooters shoot every minute the range is open everyday.

Don
 

Johnny Tremain

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The clubs in our area have died off. All that shot, and ran them.
One range took away the trail walk Ive been using for 3 decades.
Propaganda is killing the shooting sports
 

ronaldrothb49

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there are lots of ways to keep shooters interested. The original club I started shooting with in the 70's held 2 matches monthly, one paper one primitive. you never knew what you were going to shoot on the primitive. As part of your entry fee you put something worth $5 on a blanket for a prize. Often it became a competition to see how many times you could win the same prize again. sooner or later someone would make something with the butt plate or knife blade that everyone was trying to win, it was all just for fun, You were limited to 3 wins then you were out and they had a good smoke award for the last place. Sometimes they would have high, low matches. you shot the match then they flipped a coin, heads high score won, tails low score won. Sometimes you had to trade rifles with the guy next to you. Lots of ways to make it fun.
 
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WOW, what an article I just read in the October 2022 issue ( page 14-16 ) of Muzzle Blast.

View attachment 169440

The things written in this article is the main reason why I seldom attend organized shoots. Most of you know I really could care less whether I win, lose or draw.....I'm just out there for the shooting fun. Others may not look at matches the same as I do.

Peter Allen writes:

"This is actually a way of guaranteeing that the low
class shooter will never get anything, including the desire to shoot another match."

View attachment 169441

WOW, that's the harsh reality of the truth. I've talked to shooters that has been to club shoots where they are shooting at a 9" gong targets at 100 yards away. Geez....I can barely see a small target out that far, let alone hit it. Am I likely to attend another shoot at that club?? Probably not, because we know the best shooters usually wins.

I had an wise shooter once tell me:

If you are hosting an 18 target woods walk:

* 6 of those targets should be easy enough that a novice shooter could hit them.
* 6 of those targets should be of medium size so the average shooter can hit them.
* 6 targets can be tough so the experienced shooter can hit them.

That would be a VERY fair woods walk course than anyone could attempt & feel good about trying.

Outside of the WoodsWalk match at Friendship, I've only been to 2 matches with local clubs in the 10 years I've been shooting.
I've read about how tough the matches are at certain clubs & decide not to attend. I did try one last year at the Boones Trace M/L Club where the shooters were given exactly 1.25 oz ( I think ) of #6 shot to load in your smoothbore. The shot was at 40 yards into a 9" paper plate. The # of holes counted in that plate was your score. That's a fun match that anyone can feel good about attempting.

So...where am I going with this?

If you're interested in shooting paper...why not put a 100 yard target out to 40 yards & count a score based off an equal number of shots? This way...even the newest shooter feels he has a chance. Lets face it, shooting zeros will almost guarantee that shooter would not come back. Another potential member -- lost.

The last page of the article puts a different perspective to the story:

View attachment 169448

Check out the 2 photos. For kicks giggles & grins, the shooter puts some 50 yard targets at 25 yards. Taking several different targets and placing them on top of each other, the respective shooting earned the shooter a score of 10 on the squirrel. He received a score of 43 on the other target. WOW, that's big difference! New shooters are inclined to return with scores like that.

I'm in 110% agreement of this article. If the hosts would make the targets easier to shoot for a newcomer, the chances of the new shooter coming to your event is much better. Do whatever it takes to keep your shooters coming back. The Boones Trace Muzzleloading Club in eastern KY changes their format every time they shoot. Their matches are designed so anyone can win or in my case...at least place.

I like how the article is summed up:

Heed those words written 50 years ago by Peter Allen:

"There are a lot of ways of building up clubs into a big happy family,
but making it tough for the shooters is not of the ways."

View attachment 169449


Something to think about.....
 
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Thanks for your thoughtful post! Personally, this is just me, I break out in hives at the mention of "competition" or"matches"!:) You make good points, and did a good job here. Thanks.

I'm just about like you are my friend.....
I'm such a lousy shooter, they would have to hang the targets almost in from of my face! LOL
I prefer to get a group together, hang some steel & shoot it & laugh with other shooters all day long.
I've been trying that in other states for 2-3 years now & LOVE it !!
That's my kind of fun.
 
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I'm just about like you are my friend.....
I'm such a lousy shooter, they would have to hang the targets almost in from of my face! LOL
I prefer to get a group together, hang some steel & shoot it & laugh with other shooters all day long.
I've been trying that in other states for 2-3 years now & LOVE it !!
That's my kind of fun.
If a guy didnt have fun at a BPMS shoot hes just a dud to begin with.
 

JB67

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I belonged to a sportsman's club that held BP woodswalks, as did several other clubs in the area. It was always varied targets and ranges: gongs, chain, tennis balls, etc. Either you hit, or didn't. Everyone had fun. Many of us dressed in BP-era outfits.

When I moved, I found the only regular thing in the area here was shooting for scores at paper targets. Everyone was at a bench, in everyday clothes. To me, it wasn't as much fun.
 
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The club I shoot with once a month is just for fun. No prizes or awards, just some friendly competition. Every month is different targets, sometimes paper, sometimes steel, and either 25 or 50 yards.
The only real competition is with myself, just trying to improve and do my best.
That said, I did shoot a couple of matches at Friendship last month and did OK on the offhand range, but my woodswalk game needs upping. I ended up with 8 when I shot with you Mark, what was your score?
 
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Either run with the big dogs or stay home on the porch. I've been beat more often than I have won, but I have always had fun either way.
I had a club member tell me that when some of my gear was not PC. I was shooting a Lyman GPR from a bag using a brass powder container. I had some altoid tins and a plastic pill bottle to hold caps and tools. I didn’t go back.
 
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I had a club member tell me that when some of my gear was not PC. I was shooting a Lyman GPR from a bag using a brass powder container. I had some altoid tins and a plastic pill bottle to hold caps and tools. I didn’t go back.
I’d a told him in no uncertain terms to mind his own business and go snob it out with someone else! Don’t think I wouldn’t. I got a zero tolerance for people whose sole purpose in life is to belittle others. Not everyone can afford multi thousand dollar rifles and gear. I know I can’t.
 

Mustang65

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WOW, what an article I just read in the October 2022 issue ( page 14-16 ) of Muzzle Blast.

View attachment 169440

The things written in this article is the main reason why I seldom attend organized shoots. Most of you know I really could care less whether I win, lose or draw.....I'm just out there for the shooting fun. Others may not look at matches the same as I do.

Peter Allen writes:

"This is actually a way of guaranteeing that the low
class shooter will never get anything, including the desire to shoot another match."

View attachment 169441

WOW, that's the harsh reality of the truth. I've talked to shooters that has been to club shoots where they are shooting at a 9" gong targets at 100 yards away. Geez....I can barely see a small target out that far, let alone hit it. Am I likely to attend another shoot at that club?? Probably not, because we know the best shooters usually wins.

I had an wise shooter once tell me:

If you are hosting an 18 target woods walk:

* 6 of those targets should be easy enough that a novice shooter could hit them.
* 6 of those targets should be of medium size so the average shooter can hit them.
* 6 targets can be tough so the experienced shooter can hit them.

That would be a VERY fair woods walk course than anyone could attempt & feel good about trying.

Outside of the WoodsWalk match at Friendship, I've only been to 2 matches with local clubs in the 10 years I've been shooting.
I've read about how tough the matches are at certain clubs & decide not to attend. I did try one last year at the Boones Trace M/L Club where the shooters were given exactly 1.25 oz ( I think ) of #6 shot to load in your smoothbore. The shot was at 40 yards into a 9" paper plate. The # of holes counted in that plate was your score. That's a fun match that anyone can feel good about attempting.

So...where am I going with this?

If you're interested in shooting paper...why not put a 100 yard target out to 40 yards & count a score based off an equal number of shots? This way...even the newest shooter feels he has a chance. Lets face it, shooting zeros will almost guarantee that shooter would not come back. Another potential member -- lost.

The last page of the article puts a different perspective to the story:

View attachment 169448

Check out the 2 photos. For kicks giggles & grins, the shooter puts some 50 yard targets at 25 yards. Taking several different targets and placing them on top of each other, the respective shooting earned the shooter a score of 10 on the squirrel. He received a score of 43 on the other target. WOW, that's big difference! New shooters are inclined to return with scores like that.

I'm in 110% agreement of this article. If the hosts would make the targets easier to shoot for a newcomer, the chances of the new shooter coming to your event is much better. Do whatever it takes to keep your shooters coming back. The Boones Trace Muzzleloading Club in eastern KY changes their format every time they shoot. Their matches are designed so anyone can win or in my case...at least place.

I like how the article is summed up:

Heed those words written 50 years ago by Peter Allen:

"There are a lot of ways of building up clubs into a big happy family,
but making it tough for the shooters is not of the ways."

View attachment 169449


Something to think about.....
I'm going to have to agree with the article. Once the new shooter starts to develop his/her skills, they go to the next step and then to the next step. They develop their confidence more and more until they become the best that they can be, while also just having fun shooting.
 
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