By Greg Price
For those looking to take a trip back to the Old West, the Taber Shooting Foundation may have something for you.
Cowboy Action Shooting events start today, and go every Wednesday for September at the M.D. of Taber Sport Shooting Complex.
“Cowboy Action Shooting for all intents and purposes is kind of a cross between the history of the settlement of America. The guns involved are all historic model, pre-1900 guns,” said Bryan Corns, a member of the Taber Shooting Foundation. “It’s revolvers, double-barrel shotguns, coach gun and a lever-action rifle. It’s not as much a competition, as it is a gathering of people coming together to have fun shooting with the layout of the whole range having an element of history involved, be it an old saloon, be it a wagon or a corral or something. It would be something you would find that has western heritage to it like the shoot out at the OK Corral.”
Just as surroundings for Cowboy Action Shooting is historic, so too is the dress that is encouraged for shooters. Shooters don’t just show up in their sneakers and camo shorts.
“It is expected of you to participate, that you have a half dozen pieces of Western clothing. A hat would be Number One, to go with a pair of revolvers and a holster, as reproductions of our originals back in the 1800s. Usually you have a long-sleeved shirt and boots, and maybe if you wish, have a vest that is period correct,” said Corns. “It’s the same for men and women to be period correct. It makes for a shooting event that has a crowd attraction to it for people to come watch. Movement is required, where you shoot three different guns at different stages, so you don’t just stand there and shoot one particular thing.”
Corns stresses the number one component is safety for shooters and spectators alike. People who are range officers and/or are familiar with cowboy action shooting, are the ones involved in the loading of the firearm, watching the firearm being fired and unloading it.
“There is no particular point in time is there people wandering about with guns with bullets in them. It’s being ready to shoot in specific areas , you go shoot, then there is a safe area where you go to unload before you go to your next stage of shooting,” said Corns.
The association is still in the process of building up the complex to its full capacity, with hopes that enough stages are completed by the end of the month to host official events.
The Cowboy Action Shoot hopes to bring greater awareness to the Taber Shooting Foundation and the potential of the M.D. of Taber Sport Shooting Complex.
Cowboy Action Shooting goes today, Sept. 18 ad Sept. 25 starting at 6 p.m. Spectators are encouraged to bring lawn chairs, as the association is still in the process of building long benches at the facility for people to sit on.
“We want to bring more positive awareness to different types of shooting. There is so much awareness to everything that is bad with guns, we want to bring something forward, showing the heritage, showing the fun component and having some spectator appeal to it,” said Corns.