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Thread: In your opinion whats killing the group game

  1. #61
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Down By the Cedar River
    Posts
    959

    Wilbur

    "he had a choice but it was not Benchrest shooting." Says it all. End of story.

    Later
    Dave

  2. #62
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    SW.Pa.
    Posts
    845
    Quote Originally Posted by Wilbur View Post
    A thousand years ago, I took it upon myself to find out exactly why folks quit shooting Benchrest. I leaned on Pat Ferrell to supply me the mailing addresses and she reluctantly compiled the addresses of those that had previously joined the NBRSA and then quit. Thanks Pat!

    That done, I wrote a well worded letter ( I could do that back then ) to about 300 folks basically asking why they did not renew their membership. I also placed a stamped envelope along with the letter so it wouldn't cost anything but a few minutes time answering my question. I don't remember how many wrote back but it was clearly enough to realize that the "problem" could not be fixed. There was little relation from one to the other in the entire deal - waste of time. I've tried to justify the money I spent doing that but in the end I can't - waste of time.

    The NBRSA has had contests with somewhat significant prizes for whoever recruited the most members. That didn't work well either.

    The only reason that folks enjoy competing within the Benchrest arena is that they like to do it for whatever reason. When they run out of money they quit. That last statement about money is related to the competitor that likes to shoot Benchrest.

    I'll tell this story again. It may be a little different from the last time I told it but it ends the same. We were at Lakeland Florida and I noticed a fellow looking hard at a lot of "stuff". I asked him if he had an interest and he said that he would dearly love to compete but didn't have the money. We talked about it for a while and it ended right there. I couldn't help but notice him leaving in a new pickup with a four wheeler in the back. Not only that but he was pulling a nice trailer that had two more 4 wheelers on it....all newer stuff. He made a choice and it was not Benchrest shooting.

    Wilber, The money is one thing, but the work and time is the killer. I know for a fact there is not a day goes by I'm not working on something or trying to improve on something. Always working on cases bullets or the guns. If not doing that I'm cutting grass or fixing things that broke around the house. I sit down to watch a little tv. and fall asleep..... jim
    Last edited by jim1K; 07-08-2018 at 07:19 AM.

  3. #63
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Jeddo, Michigan
    Posts
    3,663
    Leading a horse to water can be a daunting task.
    We conducted an NBRSA School at Holton in 2001 and an IBS School at East Tawas in 2008. Everyone, every single person, took home more in prizes than they spent for tuition. Included was one complete rifle. And they shot all weekend for free including bullets, primers, and powder and lunch and Saturday night dinner. There were no shabby prizes and in each case the preparation for these schools took a year. We attracted some new shooters but by and large the attendees were already shooting BR. I don't think any of the raw, brand new shooter/students are still in BR. All advertising was done in the now defunct Precision Shooting magazine and on this site.

  4. #64
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Location
    Southwest PA
    Posts
    54

    I applaud you sir!

    Quote Originally Posted by rpollock View Post
    Lots of good points above. I would argue in our area, group shooting was in danger of dying a few years ago, but we have since doubled or tripled participation in our area and have a very strong contingent of shooters in Western Canada. Our home club around here is the Rosebud Silhouette & Benchrest Club. Some folks will know that we are hosting the World Championship in July of 2019.

    To put it in perspective we were down to about 6 active group shooters, and now will have about 20 - 25 active shooters close by, this is in a region with only about 2 million people within a 3 hour drive in any direction. The club recently expanded the firing line to 25 benches, doubled our clubhouse size, contoured the ranges, increased parking areas, seeded grass among other improvements.

    How did we get to this point? We recognized that we had the best kept secret in the shooting sports, and almost nobody understood it well enough to take the plunge, and the fear of the unknown was keeping people from jumping in. It is a daunting task to get in to this game. Mentorship is very important.

    1. Schools, we run a BR101 clinic almost every year, where students are paired up with coaches and shoot over the coaches flags, using the coaches rifles. This has resulted in 1-2 new participants every year. In our region and size, this is a win. I don't let students shoot their own rifles, as it defeats the purpose of shooting over the flags with a field rifle.
    2. we run an occasional BR201 clinic for experienced BR shooters and have had Jack Neary and Wayne Campbell to our range to help the shooters get the best possible information.
    3. I gave up on recruiting volunteers long ago. We pay our helpers to run targets and score, and make it worth their while. Match fees are a bit higher, but so be it. Attendance has soared. We don't have volunteer fatigue anymore.
    4. Make sure the host club benefits from closing the range for the weekend. Can't emphasize this enough.

    Some additional observations:
    1. I don't think cost is the issue people think it is, I see PRS and F class shooters paying much higher match fees, using more expensive kits, traveling just as far, and their numbers are growing. Cost is a red herring or convenient excuse. If people want to compete they will make BR a priority in their lives and find the time and money. It has always been this way. It costs money to compete in anything at the highest level. Saving $10 on an entry fee will never draw people from out of town. Make sure the match is well run and shooters are looked after. First impressions are very important for out of towners.
    2. While some see the equipment required to get on the playing field as a problem, we see it as a draw. That is, who wouldn't want to get involved with arguably the sexiest, coolest equipment out there? Never forget this is the top fuel, or F1 of the shooting world. Anyone who says BR is stagnant isn't paying close enough attention. We have 10 rail guns at our tiny club. We let everyone shoot them, some get hooked. The equipment has always been a draw, embrace it.
    3. I have not been a fan of the idea of classing or handicapping. Part of the excitement for me back at my first big shoot in Phoenix in 1997 was paying my entry fee and shooting against the best in the world. No other sport affords the luxury of this unencumbered entry to compete with the best. Try that in tennis, or motorsports, or golf etc. We have it good in BR.
    4. We don't expect that BR will appeal to everyone, maybe not even 1 in a 100 casual shooters will take it up, or maybe not even 1 in a 1000 shooters will take it up. Our job is to make sure that when the 1 in a 100 guy wants to get in involved, he can easily find us and get the support he needs to succeed.

    Note that there will be 10 guys from around here piling into various vehicles and pulling trailers for a 33 hr drive headed to Holton in September for the NBRSA Nats. Look us up! yes we are that crazy about this sport!

    Lastly, anyone that wants to talk to me about the program and success we have had in growing the sport out here, should contact me rickpollock@shaw.ca

    Rick
    Good job. That's how to attract and retain new shooters.

  5. #65
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Posts
    203
    [QUOTE=Wilbur;811086]"I'm working on a moving backer system that can be built expensively...."

    Charlie, did you mean to write "inexpensively"?[/QUOTE

    Hey Wilbur, Yeah and that's why I shouldn't be posting.

  6. #66
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Phoenix Az
    Posts
    132
    I think it comes down to $$$$$$
    Lets say i want to shoot Raton, weekend match,LV,HV. I live in Phoenix. Thats 725 miles one way,10 hours.

    5 Tanks of gas =$250-$300
    3 Days Hotel =$225
    Food = $150
    Registration = $120
    Components = $150
    Misc = $ 50
    ________
    Total $945

    Thats to shoot 20 targets, Thats $47.25 Per Target !!!!!!

  7. #67
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Jeddo, Michigan
    Posts
    3,663
    Experience............Priceless

  8. #68
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Davenport, Iowa
    Posts
    321

    Per Target/Per Fish Prices

    Quote Originally Posted by classcat View Post
    I think it comes down to $$$$$$
    Lets say i want to shoot Raton, weekend match,LV,HV. I live in Phoenix. Thats 725 miles one way,10 hours.

    5 Tanks of gas =$250-$300
    3 Days Hotel =$225
    Food = $150
    Registration = $120
    Components = $150
    Misc = $ 50
    ________
    Total $945

    Thats to shoot 20 targets, Thats $47.25 Per Target !!!!!!
    About the same price per fish as in a fishing tournament???
    Assuming you can catch fish!!!!

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