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Tex's costuming editorial


Dash Caliber

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I just read it...I agree...while my costumes would not pass an NCOWS muster they are not questionable.....that said, Tex's words make me want to step up my costume game a notch... Now here is where I get hairs raised...I think the starting line is as much part of the costume as the guns are part of the game and that there is definitely a move to cheapen the game in the name of competitiveness. Now I do believe that once the timer goes beep we all are gamers...after all, it is a timed event. Now I do think in these areas that punishment is not the answer. Communication of the reasoning is a better way and I thought Tex did so masterfully. Possibly a way could be thought up to reward those who support the spirit of the game in these areas. Maybe we could learn something from NCOWS. I have been taking little breaks from shooting and reworking my life just a little. Some shooters I see lately are in a word...obsessed. To a point of just plain unhealthy. Their choice. But the future of this sport to survive will not be at the end of some fastest at all cost contest. It will be through the support of the very things that make this county something special. Faith, Family, Country. In a word..Heritage. I think those things are in the correct order. I like winning as much as any man, but at it's highest it is a distant 4th. So before you stay up late to blast me ask yourself this simple question. Can you just miss a match ,on purpose, I mean one of your favorites? And not regret it all Saturday long? I know guys who can't do that. For a while there I couldn't. I won't be one of them. But that doesn't mean I don't love this simple game. I think the Wild Bunch loves it too. I fear we are going to miss them when they are gone. Just a view from my saddle .

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I just read it...I agree...while my costumes would not pass an NCOWS muster they are not questionable.....that said, Tex's words make me want to step up my costume game a notch... Now here is where I get hairs raised...I think the starting line is as much part of the costume as the guns are part of the game and that there is definitely a move to cheapen the game in the name of competitiveness. Now I do believe that once the timer goes beep we all are gamers...after all, it is a timed event. Now I do think in these areas that punishment is not the answer. Communication of the reasoning is a better way and I thought Tex did so masterfully. Possibly a way could be thought up to reward those who support the spirit of the game in these areas. Maybe we could learn something from NCOWS. I have been taking little breaks from shooting and reworking my life just a little. Some shooters I see lately are in a word...obsessed. To a point of just plain unhealthy. Their choice. But the future of this sport to survive will not be at the end of some fastest at all cost contest. It will be through the support of the very things that make this county something special. Faith, Family, Country. In a word..Heritage. I think those things are in the correct order. I like winning as much as any man, but at it's highest it is a distant 4th. So before you stay up late to blast me ask yourself this simple question. Can you just miss a match ,on purpose, I mean one of your favorites? And not regret it all Saturday long? I know guys who can't do that. For a while there I couldn't. I won't be one of them. But that doesn't mean I don't love this simple game. I think the Wild Bunch loves it too. I fear we are going to miss them when they are gone. Just a view from my saddle .

I say Bull!

 

Tell me where " definitely a move to cheapen the game in the name of competitiveness". At matches of late I've seen an up-tick in dress...EoT had more kids wearing chaps, chinks, vests...a whole bunch of nice "costumes".

 

Throwing the term "Spirit of the Game" out there is a cheap shot...IMHO. We already have a best working costume award...what, do you want to shame folks for wearing a minimalist costume? If that's the case, lobby to change the costuming rules.

 

Obsessed?? Hell, I can show you some folks that are obsessed with religion...guess what?! That's their choice. Don't think that you have life's priorities in better order then others.

 

You seem to have a guilty conscience and want to feel better about your choices at the expense of others.

 

If there is anything that's going to wreck this game it's folks that are judgmental of other's that play the game within the rules. Don't like the rules, lobby to change them. But don't whine if your ideas get voted down.

 

Phantom

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Since I doubt that you have ever been to a NCOWS match, nor read the "Tally Book", I doubt you can comment on what would or would not "pass muster"at a NCOWS match. I don't have my CC yet so can't comment on Tex's article.

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Tex's article had to do with SASS costuming, maybe this post could stay with that.

It is hard for me to understand that some of those who truly love CAS don't seem to care enough to find some minimal outfit in which to shoot other than denim. Having said that, how about this for a start? At the shooters meeting which begins each match it is announced that anyone who comes to the awards needs to continue with their costume to participate or receive an award. We have all seen even very experienced Cowboys and Cowgirls who come up with a ball cap or shorts or .... you name it.

I see it as totally lacking of Spirit of the Game when anyone shows that level of disrespect to our Game but also to their fellow "Gamers". Seems that this disrespect is not the "Cowboy Way"

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You say obsession, I say passion.

 

Sure I have missed matches that I like for other priorities, but at times I've gone and other things have had to wait, what's the point?

 

I haven't had a chance to read Tex's latest editorial, so can't comment on that specifically. BUT I do know that part of the success of this sport, in my opinion is the variety of way that people can enjoy it within the rules. Some dress to the hilt, others to the minimum, who am I to dictate to them what to wear as long as they are within the rules?

 

During the match, or at the awards I have cowboy duds on, but when I stop by on side match day after driving ten hours to pick up my registration packet please don't be offended if I am wearing shorts, t-shirt, and tennis shoes. Like wise at a potluck at the shooters camp. And if I just happen to show up at an evening activity in cowboy clothes and tennis shoes, please don't ride me out of town on a rail, it could be that my feet are too swollen to get the boots back on.

 

Most would say sure, allowances can be made for legitimate health issues, but how do you know if they are? I have never seen someone ask, but have seen folks bad mouthing others from a distance.

 

Enforcing the rules as written isn't a bad thing, when the proper chain of command and process is observed. But all too often vigilante justice rules the day carried out by those who are neither in a position to rightly do so, and often they don't know the rules. If you're going to call someone on a rules violation, you should darn well be able to quote chapter and verse and back it up.

 

Wow, it seems that you touched a raw nerve that I wasn't aware of. But that's the way I see it.

 

Grizz

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There is not question that some effort should be put into "dressing" the part. For our new shooters I would much rather see them at a match wearing a $10 Straw Cowboy hat, long sleeved denim work shirt, blue jeans and something that approximates a cowboy boot or even a lace up boot, just about every month, than once a year or so because they feel the need to accumulate a proper period look before they come back.

 

Boots can be problematic, over the years my feet do not like most things I stuff them into. If ya want me to move steel, shoot the match and be able to walk well enough to help tear down, just about all my boots are really iffy and some more iffy than others. The navy boondockers I wear as part of my 1880 - SAW uniforms actually pass muster for extended multi day wear. I am also finding my Fall creek Sutlery CW dress broghans to be turning out to be well fit to my feet that provide necessary support for long term wear. Cannot wear them or the rough out version from another vendor in the house though, protruding nail heads and ceramic tile do not mix. Trying to break in a pair of period correct infantry boots with leather soles and heels a few years back, I slipped carrying a couple of chairs stacked that landed on my left hand destroying the nail of my left ring finger and kept me off the range for a couple of months being left handed. The offending boots now sport a rubber heal, if that is a hangin offense get the rope.

 

Think we all need to do the best we can to present the proper image, but walk a few miles with the other guys feet before we go to crazy on what is proper period footwear. I expect earthwalkers aint it, but those who wear them claim it is a heavenly experience!

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"... there is definitely a move to cheapen the game in the name of competitiveness."

 

?

 

What's goin on down there that we haven't heard about?

 

 

..........Widder

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Howdy

 

I suppose some of you newbies have not heard of the rule that nobody is allowed to comment on articles in the Chronicle until I get my copy? Of course I never bother to read what Tex has to say even when my copy does show up, he has been griping about the same old stuff ever since I started shooting over ten years ago. In my book, as long as you don't wear any of the 'outlawed' items, like ball caps and T shirts, your costume is good. A pair of Levis, and a chambray work shirt are still OK in my book.

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Tex's article had to do with SASS costuming, maybe this post could stay with that.

It is hard for me to understand that some of those who truly love CAS don't seem to care enough to find some minimal outfit in which to shoot other than denim. Having said that, how about this for a start? At the shooters meeting which begins each match it is announced that anyone who comes to the awards needs to continue with their costume to participate or receive an award. We have all seen even very experienced Cowboys and Cowgirls who come up with a ball cap or shorts or .... you name it.

I see it as totally lacking of Spirit of the Game when anyone shows that level of disrespect to our Game but also to their fellow "Gamers". Seems that this disrespect is not the "Cowboy Way"

Don't know that I agree with the dress cowboy at the awards ceremony part. Certainly at the shoot I have no problem. But lets say you drove for 2 hours to get to a shoot and its a 95+ degree day in August. You get really hot, sweaty and grimy. I'm gonna want to remove my shirt and tall boots and wash up best I can before sitting down to eat. I'll feel much better in a t shirt and tennis shoes than boots, spurs and a long sleeve shirt and hat. Plus, I'll smell a lot better.

Fortunately, my local clubs understand this and its not a problem there, but it would shure put me off returning to somewhere where I could not unwind after a hot day and eat,

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Howdy

 

I suppose some of you newbies have not heard of the rule that nobody is allowed to comment on articles in the Chronicle until I get my copy? Of course I never bother to read what Tex has to say even when my copy does show up, he has been griping about the same old stuff ever since I started shooting over ten years ago. In my book, as long as you don't wear any of the 'outlawed' items, like ball caps and T shirts, your costume is good. A pair of Levis, and a chambray work shirt are still OK in my book.

Yep, if yer gonna talk about it before DJ gets his copy you should take the time to post the entire text, cause I usually get mine the day after his copy arrives. ;) +1 on Levis, work shirt and any footwear not outlawed.......includes work boots and shoes.....only two categories require boots :)

 

If someone's outfit is legal, it's legal. Get over it.

Ta Daaaaa!! :D

 

Jefro :ph34r: RelaxEnjoy

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When I first joined SASS, I was told to read page 2 of the Handbook about clothing. Then I started going to matches at different clubs every week, and noticed that each club had their own set of rules as far as what was compliant clothing. So, my logical deduction was that the club's rules supercedes page 2 of the Handbook. I think that would be confusing to a new shooter. I'll wear whatever they want me to wear....to an extent. Just my observations, not judging any club or rule.

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If someone's outfit is legal, it's legal. Get over it.

 

100% ~ via the Shooters Handbook

 

page (2)

 

Cowboy Action Shooting™ is a combination of historical reenactment and Saturday morning at the matinee. Participants may choose the style of costume they wish to wear, but all clothing must be typical of the late 19th century, a B-western movie, or Western television series.
SASS puts a great deal of emphasis on costuming because it adds so much to the uniqueness of our game and helps create a festive, informal atmosphere that supports the friendly, fraternal feeling we encourage in our competitors.
All shooters must be in costume, and we encourage invited guests and family also to be costumed. Shooters must remain in costume at all match events: dinners, award ceremonies, dances, etcetera.
ALL clothing and equipment MUST be worn appropriately, how it was intended and how it would have been worn in the OLD WEST or as seen on B-Western movies and television.
and:
page (24)
The use or presence of any outlawed item is a Stage Disqualification.
• Modern shooting gloves.
• Short sleeve shirts (Male competitors only)
• Short sleeve tee shirts, long sleeve tee shirts, and tank tops for all competitors. Long sleeved Henley type shirts with buttons are acceptable.
• Modern feathered cowboy hats (Shady Bradys). Straw hats of traditional design (e.g., Stetson, Bailey, sombreros,) are acceptable.
• Designer jeans
• Ball caps
• All types of athletic shoes or combat boots, no matter the material from which they are constructed.
• Nylon, plastic, or Velcro accouterments.
• The displaying of manufacturer’s, sponsor’s, or team

 

GG ~ :FlagAm:

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I havn't read the article yet, but, I more or less agree. I think costuming is a part of CAS. When I first started, I thought the costuming was kind of hokey, but I'm getting where I like it more and more. But.... each of us can do it however they like, within the rules. What I don't like is somebody expressing an opinion on here and getting barked at for it. we are all entitled to our opinions.

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I havn't read the article yet, but, I more or less agree. I think costuming is a part of CAS. When I first started, I thought the costuming was kind of hokey, but I'm getting where I like it more and more. But.... each of us can do it however they like, within the rules. What I don't like is somebody expressing an opinion on here and getting barked at for it. we are all entitled to our opinions.

I agree!

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I havn't read the article yet, but, I more or less agree. I think costuming is a part of CAS. When I first started, I thought the costuming was kind of hokey, but I'm getting where I like it more and more. But.... each of us can do it however they like, within the rules. What I don't like is somebody expressing an opinion on here and getting barked at for it. we are all entitled to our opinions.

That's bull. Ya put your opinion out there and accept the fact that other's opinions may differ...and your opinion may be WRONG!

 

When you also put out your opinion...and then state that you EXPECT to be flamed...then MAYBE you should rephrase your opinion or simply not give it.

 

The OP was not only an OPINION of dress, but it was a JUDGEMENT of others. THAT is not necessary, but if one wants to pass judgment on others then they should be willing to accept strong opinions to the contrary.

 

There are folks that will take an EXCEPTION to represent a trend. Often times this is done by folks that either don't get out much, or are new to the game...or some kind of combination of the two.

 

Outside of relaxed Summer dress codes, I've seen an up-tick of dressing up.

 

Phantom

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That's bull. Ya put your opinion out there and accept the fact that other's opinions may differ...and your opinion may be WRONG!

 

When you also put out your opinion...and then state that you EXPECT to be flamed...then MAYBE you should rephrase your opinion or simply not give it.

 

The OP was not only an OPINION of dress, but it was a JUDGEMENT of others. THAT is not necessary, but if one wants to pass judgment on others then they should be willing to accept strong opinions to the contrary.

 

There are folks that will take an EXCEPTION to represent a trend. Often times this is done by folks that either don't get out much, or are new to the game...or some kind of combination of the two.

 

Outside of relaxed Summer dress codes, I've seen an up-tick of dressing up.

 

Phantom

There is no right or wrong with an opinion. It's just somebodys point of view. You may not agree with someone's opinion, while others may agree. It's not worth attacking it.

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Tex has a guidline that he likes to see. Costuming is a big part of CAS, I have played a large role in contest through out the past 12 years of Comin'At'Cha. In the early days a button up or snap checkered shirt with a pair of Levis was great. As the years past costumes progressively have gotten more period correct colorfull and stylish. If You like to dress up,, please do !!!! Look as country, hillbilly or cowboy as You would like. Don't let your costume keep You from attending the next great match... I think the smile on Your face says it all at the end of the match. If Your the best dressed CHICKEN at Comin'At'Cha this year YOU will win a Dillon 650 on Saturday night...

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Tex has a guidline that he likes to see. Costuming is a big part of CAS, I have played a large role in contest through out the past 12 years of Comin'At'Cha. In the early days a button up or snap checkered shirt with a pair of Levis was great. As the years past costumes progressively have gotten more period correct colorfull and stylish. If You like to dress up,, please do !!!! Look as country, hillbilly or cowboy as You would like. Don't let your costume keep You from attending the next great match... I think the smile on Your face says it all at the end of the match. If Your the best dressed CHICKEN at Comin'At'Cha this year YOU will win a Dillon 650 on Saturday night...

 

+1

 

GG ~ :FlagAm:

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geeeese guys

the feller say he sees the importance of one of the great aspects of dressing the part for CAS

 

I became obsessed with CAS for a decade and a half, now I do other things more and shoot less

their aint nothin wrong with that, so he may also be sayin something to that nature

 

NCOWS, was just a reference point, I tried it many years ago, found it to be t00 limiting for my taste

 

and just what is fast: that word gets trowed around all the time

 

when stages were shot by top world championship shooters in the 35+- second range

shucks folks, them shooters were fast

now stage design has top world championship shooters do-in stages in 15 second range

in an apple to apple comparision

what got faster

the world champion classed shooter, or stage design

oh well

mileage will vary

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There is no right or wrong with an opinion. It's just somebodys point of view. You may not agree with someone's opinion, while others may agree. It's not worth attacking it.

Yes it is...when the opinion passes judgment...and THAT'S my opinion.

 

Besides, he knew he was going to catch crap on his opinion...read his post again. That's flammin' the fire...

 

Just because one has a right to state their opinion doesn't mean that they have the right to not have that opinion rebutted.

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Tex's article had to do with SASS costuming, maybe this post could stay with that.

It is hard for me to understand that some of those who truly love CAS don't seem to care enough to find some minimal outfit in which to shoot other than denim. Having said that, how about this for a start? At the shooters meeting which begins each match it is announced that anyone who comes to the awards needs to continue with their costume to participate or receive an award. We have all seen even very experienced Cowboys and Cowgirls who come up with a ball cap or shorts or .... you name it.

I see it as totally lacking of Spirit of the Game when anyone shows that level of disrespect to our Game but also to their fellow "Gamers". Seems that this disrespect is not the "Cowboy Way"

 

 

During the match, or at the awards I have cowboy duds on, but when I stop by on side match day after driving ten hours to pick up my registration packet please don't be offended if I am wearing shorts, t-shirt, and tennis shoes. Like wise at a potluck at the shooters camp. And if I just happen to show up at an evening activity in cowboy clothes and tennis shoes, please don't ride me out of town on a rail, it could be that my feet are too swollen to get the boots back on.

 

Most would say sure, allowances can be made for legitimate health issues, but how do you know if they are? I have never seen someone ask, but have seen folks bad mouthing others from a distance.

Grizz

 

Don't know that I agree with the dress cowboy at the awards ceremony part. Certainly at the shoot I have no problem. But lets say you drove for 2 hours to get to a shoot and its a 95+ degree day in August. You get really hot, sweaty and grimy. I'm gonna want to remove my shirt and tall boots and wash up best I can before sitting down to eat. I'll feel much better in a t shirt and tennis shoes than boots, spurs and a long sleeve shirt and hat. Plus, I'll smell a lot better.

Fortunately, my local clubs understand this and its not a problem there, but it would shure put me off returning to somewhere where I could not unwind after a hot day and eat,

 

What I am talking about is at annual, regional and national matches for their formal functions. I understand that local clubs who tally their scores and give out awards after a long hot match are a totally different animal, as are the informal potlucks in the evening. How impressive is it for a winner of an annual or above to walk up with shorts and a ball cap for photos?

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If blue jeans are legal. Then they are legal.

 

 

If you don't like it. Work to change the rules to make it not legal.

 

Until then. Or until you do that. You are just blowing hot air that don't mean much.

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What I am talking about is at annual, regional and national matches for their formal functions. I understand that local clubs who tally their scores and give out awards after a long hot match are a totally different animal, as are the informal potlucks in the evening. How impressive is it for a winner of an annual or above to walk up with shorts and a ball cap for photos?

 

I agree with that, and think that most folks do show up in costume for the awards.

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Howdy

 

I suppose some of you newbies have not heard of the rule that nobody is allowed to comment on articles in the Chronicle until I get my copy? Of course I never bother to read what Tex has to say even when my copy does show up, he has been griping about the same old stuff ever since I started shooting over ten years ago. In my book, as long as you don't wear any of the 'outlawed' items, like ball caps and T shirts, your costume is good. A pair of Levis, and a chambray work shirt are still OK in my book.

Just another article by Tex complaining about folks wearing jeans and boots he does not like.

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Go read Tex's editorial here:

 

http://www.sopdigitaledition.com/thecowboychronicle/#/1/

 

Olen

Thanks Olen, now that I've read it it's more of the same from Tex, in fact it's titled "One More Time"

 

If blue jeans are legal. Then they are legal.

 

 

If you don't like it. Work to change the rules to make it not legal.

 

Until then. Or until you do that. You are just blowing hot air that don't mean much.

I agree. Also in the article Tex seems to contradict himself. He talks about how we have top shooters not going all out in their costumes, but almost in the same breath he refers to how perfectly legal they are. He says they shouldn't wear Wranglers but at the same time says they are not outlawed.........it's really hard to understand what's the point. Then he talks about how these abusers are at EOT and awards.......if they are doing something wrong why is Tex and the other officials not doing something about when it's right in front of them?? :huh:

Then he mocks modern snap shirts and jeans with belts when we have a dress category where they are very common. And he's never gonna be satisfied with footwear untill everyone wears the exact same boot that he does. There are many of us that just cannot wear certain types of footwear, we will wear what we can to get us to the match. There was all kinds of footwear back then, many of them shoes and ankle high boots, they came with buckles, laces, slip-ons, cap toes, plain toes...etc...etc...If I have to I'll start gluing my handicap placards to my shoes.....my perfectly legal leather shoes :wacko:

 

I'm sorry but I just don't see these evil abusers at the matches I've attended. I know I'm not as well traveled as Tex, but I have had the pleasure of shooting at large matches in seven different states..........I would think if this is that common it's ugly head would have shown itself by now :wacko: Good Luck :)

 

Jefro :ph34r: Relax-Enjoy

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Wow! love seeing everyone complain, I do agree with some of Tex s article, Would like to see everyone dressing cowboy/cowgirl. You don't have to spend hundreds of dollars on clothes, I do have issues with people who spend thousands of dollars on guns, send them away for hundred dollar action jobs, have the latest 3rd. 4th. gen. short stoke kit, buy $500 gun rigs, then complain about buying a $25 dollar western shirt. Not talking about Newbies here, or people with medical conditions that prevent them from wearing boots, but come on you can outfit yourself with clothes and boots for around $200. Wild West merc. has great pants for under $30, and shirts for $25. Frontier fort boots $125 per pair. Bailey hat for under $50. or find one at the local Goodwill or ebay.

Rafe

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I just read it...I agree...while my costumes would not pass an NCOWS muster they are not questionable.....that said, Tex's words make me want to step up my costume game a notch... Now here is where I get hairs raised...I think the starting line is as much part of the costume as the guns are part of the game and that there is definitely a move to cheapen the game in the name of competitiveness. Now I do believe that once the timer goes beep we all are gamers...after all, it is a timed event. Now I do think in these areas that punishment is not the answer. Communication of the reasoning is a better way and I thought Tex did so masterfully. Possibly a way could be thought up to reward those who support the spirit of the game in these areas. Maybe we could learn something from NCOWS. I have been taking little breaks from shooting and reworking my life just a little. Some shooters I see lately are in a word...obsessed. To a point of just plain unhealthy. Their choice. But the future of this sport to survive will not be at the end of some fastest at all cost contest. It will be through the support of the very things that make this county something special. Faith, Family, Country. In a word..Heritage. I think those things are in the correct order. I like winning as much as any man, but at it's highest it is a distant 4th. So before you stay up late to blast me ask yourself this simple question. Can you just miss a match ,on purpose, I mean one of your favorites? And not regret it all Saturday long? I know guys who can't do that. For a while there I couldn't. I won't be one of them. But that doesn't mean I don't love this simple game. I think the Wild Bunch loves it too. I fear we are going to miss them when they are gone. Just a view from my saddle .

Dash you're a cowboy I look up to, one of the first I met starting out in the game. Having said that, in this case I disagree with you.

 

1. NCOWs has a fraction of our membership, I don't believe they have anything to offer us that will be an improvement, unless you prefer 'better' costuming and significantly lower attendance an improvement.

2. The idea of establishing minimum dress codes rules, then ignoring them in favor of a subjective measure based on someone's opinion of what is acceptable will lead to a lot of unhappy shooters who have no idea what will be required of them at different venues. If you're within the rules that should be enough. I know if I'm in compliance and someone questions why I'm 'minimally' attired they won't care much for my response.

3. I think defining supporting the 'Spirit of the Game' as going beyond dress code requirements is a mistake. SOG should be bigger than that. It isn't fair or accurate to imply that people who don't dress to the nines aren't supporting SOG.

3.

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Wild West merc. has great pants for under $30

 

I'm not at all arguing with you, just trying to understand where folks are coming from. I can get a pair of Wranglers or Levi's at my local outlet mall for $20 and they're 100% SASS legal so, why are folks so up in arms about them??? It makes NO sense. :wacko:

 

Also, since we in SASS pride ourselves on being so family friendly and work tirelessly to bring more, younger shooters into our game, why are we "punishing" them for wearing perfectly legal clothes? Take a young family of four or five and figure out how much $$$ they'd have to spend to deck everybody out in the bare minimum SASS legal clothing. That's a small fortune. Again, they're in absolute 100% compliance with the rules so, why give them a hard time??? Not my idea of a welcoming attitude or encouraging folks to join our fine organization.

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Don't get me started when folks start commenting about how volunteers aren't dressed Cowboy Enough at an annual when even they (the volunteers) meet or exceed the SASS guidelines.

 

Fillmore

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Tex's article:

 

 

 

I’ve written many editorials over the years regarding the
importance of appropriate costuming in SASS. I've even received heartfelt notes
to the effect of enough already! Write about guns and gear, how to be a better competitor,
and the like. Pd love to but we still
have a number of folks who just “don't get it!” Right from the “git-go” SASS recognized
the importance of costuming. It's one of the things that make our shooting game
unique and it provides an environment
where we can play out our Old West fantasies and help make America safe for
God-fearing families. It’s an extension of the game most of us played as kids the only real difference is in the price of
our toys!

 

It took some of us a while to “catch on,” but even in the

early days most of us realized it wasn’t all that hard to create an Old West
outfit. In those days, that generally meant a shopping trip to the thrift store
and a little cutting and sewing when we got home. SASS did everything it could
to encourage costuming, including holding costume contests and recognizing
costume contest winners on roughly the same par as our shooting winners. END of
TRAIL had five separate costume contests this year!



Over the years numerous costuming merchants have sprung up,
and several of these are major sponsors of various SASS events. Today it's
extremely easy to create a “knock-out" costume right off the rack! Some of
these merchants and sponsors have correctly observed a noticeable decline in
recent years in the quality of many of our competitors’ costumes and it is a
large concern to them. And, a review of the photographs from several annual
matches, including but not restricted to Winter Range and END of TRAIL, lends
validity to their observations. Either some of our folks still “just don’t get
it,” or they do understand, but don't believe costume compliance is worth the
effort. And, worst of all some of these
folks are winners folks who should be
setting an example for the rest of our shooters
particularly for our newer and younger competitors. These are our role
models, and some are falling way short in wearing appropriate costumes.



In the Shooters Handbook, there are two sections dealing specifically
with costumes—the first lays out the costuming requirements and the second
provides a list of outlawed items. If an outlawed item is worn to the firing
line, it results in a Stage Disqualification and two Stage Disqualifications
are a Match Disqualification. We don’t see too many of these items!



The first section provides the requirements Participants may choose the style of costume
they wish to wear, but all clothing m H-Si be typical of the late 19th century,
a B-western movie, or Western television series. It goes on to say, Shooters
mast remain in costume at all match events:
dinners, award ceremonies, dances,
etcetcra.



The requirements are clear, very broad, and allow all sorts
of creativity. They were never meant to be restrictive. Costumes can be very
elaborate .... some are. They can be
very simple ... and many are . . . but Wranglers are NOT part of the equation! They're
not outlawed but they are definitely not
Old West, either.



I've seen t-shirts, jeans, and “some sort of boots” worn at
annual matches, as well as ball caps, and, indeed, “civies” worn in the awards
lineups most folks are far too savvy to
try this at END of TRAIL, but a review of the END of TRAIL Top Gun Shoot-off
competition shows many of our Winners wearing non-descript "work" or modern
“cowboy” shirts and belted jeans. These folks should be representing the best
there is in SASS in shooting and their costumes. On the shooting side, the RD Committee
has long recognized “if it’s a rule, what’s the penalty for
non-compliance?" And in this case, there is no commonly accepted answer
when considering the costuming requirements. SASS has chosen to cajole,
persuade, and lead by example. Unfortunately, that’s not working.



Few have been willing to take on the role of “Costuming
Police." “while it's clear we want folks to “suit up," there is
considerable leeway in what is acceptable and what is not. Our Match Directors and
Range Officers (and, indeed, our participating SASS members) do not feel they
have the authority or a “rule directive” in the Handbook that gives them the
obligation to make a judgment call regarding someone’s costume.



It’s common practice for newcomers to be given “cart blanche”
leeway regarding costuming until they can get their stuff together but they ARE expected to finally acquire an
appropriate costume. In my mind, anyone who chooses to not acquire an appropriate
shooting costume is in violation of the “Spirit of the Game” and deserves a
3O—second penalty for each and every stage in which they compete. But, that’s
not the common understanding or practice, either.



The RO Committee will be adding this important subject to the
Territorial Governor's Agenda to be addressed at this year's SASS Convention in Branson, MO. It's time to become more definitive as to what's acceptable and the
penalty For non-compliance.

(This is not just Tex speaking. This subject has the support of the entire Wild Bunch...Cat)



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