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Thread: Growing the IBS

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    Growing the IBS Group Shooters

    Well, here it goes. Not Quite sure if we will piss anyone off or not, but I feel it needs to be addressed.

    The IBS is failing and it needs help to survive. We need shooters and ranges and I feel nothing is being done about trying to increase attendance and ranges to shoot at.

    We need some type of Marketing done, other then BRC and Precision Shooting Magazine.

    I feel we need some sort of a booth to take to Gun Shows (Marketing). This booth can be UPS'ed to Gun Shows (BIG and small) then an IBS Member can bring their BR Rifle with the BR equipment (Reloading, Wing Flag, Targets etc.) to the show and to stir up excitement amongst the crowd.

    For those IBS Members that can not pull off some work duty at the shows close to them, maybe we increase their dues a little, as they do at the local ranges. If you decide not to work the show, or any other Marketing strategy (like setting up the booth in Gander Mountain, Cabela's for the weekend,etc.), then your membership dues are slightly higher.

    We may also be able to get some sponsorship from some of the vendors if we help promote some of their products at our booth at the shows. (Marketing)

    I also feel that Local Benchrest Workshops/Schools wouldl also help stir up interest. The IBS is done shooting for the year and we still have September and October, good shooting weather, to run some workshops and schooling at some of the Local ranges. I am sure they would not only allow us the do this, they would welcome us with open arms!!! (Canastota)

    I am looking for any other ideas that might help us survive, as I would love to keep shooting Benchrest for a very long time. Any input with regard to this matter would be Greatly Appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Russell Rains

    PS- I would really like to thank those that have kept this sport alive for as long as it has been, but I feel that something really needs to be done before the last target falls!
    Last edited by R. Rains; 08-23-2012 at 05:34 AM.

  2. #2
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    Sep 2005
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    Ontario, Canada
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    Russell, couldn't agree with you more. We always thought we could enjoy our retirement shooting benchrest, but we're concerned with the trend. Small shooting ranges are disappearing, and attendance at the big shoots isn't strong for a lot of reasons. As the economy moves forward it might not carry the game with it if we lose too much ground.

    Glad you started the discussion, we all need to think outside the box on this one.

    George and Vera

  3. #3
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    Tennessee
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    Russ, not to worry about PO'ing anyone but there needs be some changes to the current process because, even recognizing the bad economy, attendance is down. One evening I needed to call Greg Walley about something and he was shocked to see we only had about 85 shooters at Weikert, a range in what I consider the prettiest part of the US.
    Last edited by JerrySharrett; 08-24-2012 at 06:02 AM. Reason: spelling

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    "Canal Town",USA
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    611
    The IBS is done shooting for the year and we still have September and October, good shooting weather, to run some workshops and schooling at some of the Local ranges. I am sure they would not only allow us the do this, they would welcome us with open arms!!! (Canastota)

    Russell,
    Last I heard the "rat pack" is alive,well and still in control of the Canastota Conservation Club. Word from inside the compound is that they tore down the wailing wall. They must have needed the plywood to shut out any light from entering the club house.

  5. #5
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    Russell, I am glad you started this thread. You have worked hard to help our sport and the IBS. Thank you for keeping the Precision Shooter of the Year points last year - a thankless task that deserves a public thanks here at BRC. Your thoughts are sound and well-reasoned, but something we have talked about for awhile. Quite honestly, the problem is that very few of our tribe are willing to pitch in and help to implement a lot of good ideas.

    Bob White (with Harley Baker) has been doing great work in New Jersey with his clinics. He has drawn 25-30 shooters to them which has netted some regulars on the circuit. Just last week, Bob agreed to approach Savage to see what they could throw our way to encourage more factory rifles to compete at IBS matches (no I am not talking about a sanction factory class). With few exceptions, varmint shooters with Savages or Remingtons are the real source of new shooters.

    A few years ago Francis Becignuel ran a benchrest school from which John Cascarino and some others emerged.

    Your thought process is consistent to what I have been TRYING to do. I wrote about growing the sport back in 2008 and 2009, both of my documents are attached. I believe had been posted on the IBS web site previously. Also, I do a PowerPoint at the annual IBS meeting which are always on our website. The IBS website has a .pdf for download for benchrest shooters to post at their local gun shop or range. I have attached a .pdf of my Winter Meeting report which contains a lot of data from the benchrest survey we did on surveymonkey.com. If we have not succeeded in growing our numbers, it has not been for lack of effort.

    Jerry: last week at Weikert in HV we had 93 shooters, not far off of the just over 100 last year at Holton. In fact, the 2011 IBS Group Nationals drew better than the NBRSA's (of which I am a member, of course) in Midland. This is not an IBS problem, but a benchrest one. I noticed the Rattlesnake at Raton last weekend had 47 shooters. I stand to be corrected, but didn't that shoot usually draw 65-80 shooters? Kane, Pa used to sell out and the number are down there for the pie-eating contest with some shooting thrown in.

    We have to make benchrest more approachable, but the nature of our game makes that tough. It is an intense shooting sport which has a goal to put five (or ten) shots in the same hole-every time you go to the bench. If you attend a match you may be shooting next to, and against, Tony Boyer or another HOF member. If you go to, say an IDPA match, as my son and I did a couple of times last year, we could shoot a low-keyed match in our own class. I am NOT advocating shooter classes, it just won't work with our numbers. More specifically,though, just the nature of benchrest vs. action pistol is such that the range of scores from first to last is much wider in pistol than benchrest. So if the winner of a bench match aggs a .21 the last place may be a .42 which is miles away for how we think, but in most circles, still fine shooting in the general shooting world.

    It has been said that benchrest is the toughest shooting game there is. The only variable removed is that the rifles sit on a solid rest. Of course, equipment and its tuning AND reading condition is where we spend our time, energy and thought process. Nevertheless, in my opinion, the reason why benchrest is so tough is that is totally unforgiving. As the old cliche goes, "every shot makes someone happy". The shooting itself is at the edge of the accuracy envelope plus you go against the best in the sport at any given shoot. Therefore, our game attracts those shooters with the self-confidence and determination to either improve their shooting (and the myriad of things attached thereto), be happy with mediocre results, or quit. There is a glass ceiling in this sport that is tough to get through. Some guys, such as Harley Baker, Andy Shifflett, Jeff Gaidos among others have done so. New fellows, such as Jeff Thompson and Gary Sullivan are doing it right now. If you don't break through and have some success, the usual result is that a guy or gal drifts away and does something else.

    I don't have all the answers, but the IBS EBoard and I are all ears-both for ideas AND volunteers.

    Jeff Stover
    IBS President
    Attached Files Attached Files
    Last edited by Jeff Stover; 08-23-2012 at 08:18 AM.

  6. #6
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    Aug 2006
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    Sun Prairie, WI
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    Non-santioned fun mataces are doing very well. They can be shot with a factory gun and often have reactionary tragets. The low cost high fun mix allows more people to participate. Eventually many will shoot IBS or NBRSA matches. They just need a way to start.

    Terry

  7. #7
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    Mar 2010
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    Maybe the probhlem at kane is not honoring IBS cards its an NBRSA match.
    Maybe there are TOO many score shoots and not enough $$$ to go around, You can forget Canastota,
    I was asked if Camillus wanted to buy their targets and backer supplies.
    Yes Joel the rat pack is at it as usual. By the way thier big money maker long range shoot was a Flop.
    Unless there is a plague and the rat pack dies don't expect any changes soon'
    The booth at a gun show idea is an old one, I remember one being at the syracuse show.
    Michelle Sutton and some others ran one some time ago.
    There is no fall match as usual because of attendance' After the National shooters don't attend for some reason.
    As you know Camillus use to have a late match in the fall.
    If attendance was big enough we could do it , providing we got a big enough turnout.
    Herb use to have one , but attendance was only about 30 shooters.
    with all of the work that has to be done its really hard to justify a match for 30 shooters.
    The nats should be The Traditioal Labor day weekend

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Eastern Pennsylvania
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    The IBS is done for the year? Are the Score and Long Range matches that were scheduled in Sept. Oct. Nov. & Dec. cancelled? A statement like this, without being corrected, might give doubts to someone considering joining the IBS to compete.
    Last edited by LHSmith; 08-22-2012 at 11:16 PM.

  9. #9
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    Russel is reffering to group shooting. score shooting [hunter class] was the primer to get people interested.
    Since the rule changes and the advent of the new classes things have really changed

  10. #10
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    Feb 2003
    Location
    aurora, co
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    the ibs is done..because they are narrow minded.
    they had western members but ignored them and thier wishes.
    they had western clubs but insulted them and lost them.
    ibs needs new management that understands it is not an east coast club......
    marketing for new members will not fix any of the above...
    fix the problem, not the symptoms

    mike in co

  11. #11
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    Lock Haven, PA
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    Check the IBS schedule. There are LOTS of score and long range matches the rest of the year. Gerry was only referring to group matches.

  12. #12
    Join Date
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    Mr. in co,

    There are two positions for which we are accepting nominations for this fall's election: President and 1st VP. See the IBS website under "news" for details. The incumbents have agreed to stand for election, but there is room on the ballot for one other name plus write ins.

    The issue of which you speak relates to the 1000 yard Nationals that Colorado bid on. If you would like more information on the background of the decision to award to Whitehorse, WV please email me at: jstover33@comcast.net or call my cell 570-660-6102.

    Jeff Stover

  13. #13
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    Yes group matches. Thats what Russel was also talking about.
    Last edited by GerryM; 08-22-2012 at 11:41 PM.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by JerrySharrett View Post
    we only had about 85 shooters at Weikert, a range in what I consider the prettiest part of the US.
    When did Weikert move to the desert southwest?

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Stover View Post
    Russell, I am glad you started this thread. You have worked hard to help our sport and the IBS.

    Jerry: last week at Weikert in HV we had 95 shooters, not far off of the just over 100 last year at Holton.... Jeff Stover
    IBS President
    Go to the IBS web site and look at the official results. No where were there 95 shooters!!! The most I could find in any event was 93. And there were only 51 shooters listed on one event (HB200).

    Jeff Stover, Mr IBS president, I only found your name listed as an entrant in HV100, only one of the 8 events. Not to pick on you personally, but that lack of attendance may provide clues as to lower attendance.

    Now, lets stop quibbling over minor statistics and work on improving the benchrest sport. A start might be that since we have a few new shooters, poke them to see what motivated them to enter this great sport.

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