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Which clubs can handle BIG matches?


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A pard asked me why they don’t move EOT around every year.  My response was, in big part, there are very few clubs around the country that can handle a match that size.  And then I started to wonder- Are there any at all east of the Mississippi?

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Geez, I would have no idea and I would not mind it moving around but also think a club should get to have it at least two years in a row, if not three.  I am thinking starting next year World will be at one sort of end of the country and nationals set of at the other end and that seems pretty good to me.  My hat is off to any club that can pull it off.

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The folks at Paradise Pass have proven that they can handle it!  The facility at Sparta Illinois can easily get the job done. The old Mule Camp site is another possibility.

 

There are several other clubs that I have visited that could probably do the job very well with a little planning and preparation.

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The Arizona Rangers have a five year deal with SASS to run EOT.  They also have a huge, very experienced posse of volunteers.  It’s pretty hard to move that around the country.

 

And, I am guessing that they will have a shoot in February  at Ben Avery whether it is EOT or something else.  It’s just what they do.

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Posted (edited)

When Paradise pass hosted EOT, the number of shooters was held to a smaller limit.  Can they handle 800+ shooters?

 

Pete, there can be no doubt that the Rangers put on an excellent match and deserve all accolades.  And they have the facility and infrastructure to handle that and more.  Also, I understand that it is a huge undertaking and to be done right requires a huge investment of time, money and energy.  Therefore, hosting for more than one year at a time makes sense.

 

My question was more curiosity than anything else as I know the number of clubs/venues capable of handling a match like this is VERY limited.

 

I knew Sparta facility could, but not sure if the club has the membership and wherewithal?  Same with Mule Camp.

Edited by Possum Skinner, SASS#60697
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The ONLY problem with Sparta is that it is in Illinois, where thee Democrat Governor is as anti-gun as possible. He would enjoy nothing more than to let us schedule, then find some reason to cancel at the last minute.

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32 minutes ago, Badlands Bob #61228 said:

Having a facility to handle that size match is one thing.  Having the volunteer workforce is another.  

DING DING DING - we have a winner.

 

The Eldorado Cowboys in Boulder City Nevada have a beautiful range.

All told - 20+ individual bays with long range, trap and amenities.  And all the steel needed to set those bays.

BUT.....

We also have a limited workforce - many years of setting up the State shoot - the workforce to set up/ teardown/ create shooter packets and badges/ man registration/ stage water/ paint/ build facades and run the shoot consisted of less than 10 people.

 

Now granted 12 stages of steel is 12 stages of steel - but there is a vast difference logistically between 200 and 800 - 1000 shooters.

You need bodies to support a shooting group of that many people.

Not to mention the increases of vendor support, security, medical, parking direction and a dozen other things I'm overlooking.

 

Physical facilities - there are probably 40 clubs (maybe more) that could handle the shooters.

Match Directors/ Clubs - there are a LOT of hardworking, smart match directors and clubs that could PLAN for such an event.

Clubs with enough club members/ volunteers needed to do the above?  I think that number dwindles quickly.

 

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1 hour ago, Possum Skinner, SASS#60697 said:

When Paradise pass hosted EOT, the number of shooters was held to a smaller limit.  Can they handle 800+ shooters?

 

Pete, there can be no doubt that the Rangers put on an excellent match and deserve all accolades.  And they have the facility and infrastructure to handle that and more.  Also, I understand that it is a huge undertaking and to be done right requires a huge investment of time, money and energy.  Therefore, hosting for more than one year at a time makes sense.

 

My question was more curiosity than anything else as I know the number of clubs/venues capable of handling a match like this is VERY limited.

 

I knew Sparta facility could, but not sure if the club has the membership and wherewithal?  Same with Mule Camp.

If I recall correctly the original Mule Camp was at the Cherokee Gun Club, which is home to the Cherokee Cowboys.  I don't think that club has the facilities to host a really big match.  The second home to Mule Camp was the South River Gun Club, which for a time hosted the Mule Camp Cowboys and now hosts the South River Shootists.  That Gun Club definitely has the facilities to host big matches. 

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Sparta Il has a great range and can handle big events ( 12 berms, over 1000 camp sites) but the number in our club has gotten smaller over the the years. However, the range is for rent and run by the state and if somebody wanted to put on a a big match there, it could be done with the proper planning. Hopefully we will get a new Governor this year and  one candidate is from Southern Illinois and gun friendly. 

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Having seen firsthand the work that has been and is being done by a tremendously dedicated army of Arizona Rangers I would really hesitate moving it from where it is just for that reason alone. Many don’t realize that the preparation for EOT 2023 is in the planning stages now and come Monday morning the work will begin again.

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1 hour ago, Yul Lose said:

Having seen firsthand the work that has been and is being done by a tremendously dedicated army of Arizona Rangers I would really hesitate moving it from where it is just for that reason alone. Many don’t realize that the preparation for EOT 2023 is in the planning stages now and come Monday morning the work will begin again.

I bet it's going to be fun. Thanks for the pictures. I hope we get videos!

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I have been to 2 and 3 day matches in Nevada, New Mexico, Michigan, Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Maryland, and have seen the facilities where multi day matches have been held in Minnesota, Pennsylvania, another places in Massachusetts and New Jersey.  These were all state and/or regional matches.

I think all of them, from a facility standpoint, could hold an End of the Trail size event.  While they have enough places to set up the 12 stages and side match events, it might be a tight squeeze for the number of participants that would be in attendance.   And then there are logistics of said event.   Having the space is one thing.  Organizing the much more complex schedule than even a regional has is quite another.  (I've been to EoT.  I could see how much MORE planning and organization goes into it than even the largest regional I have attended, the MA/CT/RI Tristate.  Never did make to the Great Nor'Easter for various personal reasons, but did see part of it one year.)  

So while it is possible that some places around the country may have the physical facilities to hold EoT, the question if they have the logistical capability to organize the event is one that is not so easily answered.

All of that being said, I think the simplest solution is to have EoT remain as it is where it is.   But, there is also Winter Range, a rather big event.  Maybe SASS could figure out a way to encourage the creation of Spring, Summer and Fall Range, and find places to hold them in other parts of the country.   Just divide the county into 4 rough "quarters"  Use the Mississippi River and the Mason Dixon Line extended all the way to California.   Then make sure each "region" has a "Seasonal Event."

 

Random musings from a warped mind....

 

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42 minutes ago, H. K. Uriah, SASS #74619 said:

have EoT remain as it is where it is.   But, there is also Winter Range, a rather big event. 

Ummm...WR is essentially now EOT...:mellow:

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Posted (edited)

H.K., we had divisional matches (essentially your seasonals), but they never really caught on and quickly went away.

 

I’ve been to a lot of matches in multiple states and besides EOT in N.M., Mule Camp was the only match I’ve seen that I think could handle an event of that size.  As big and great as Comin at Cha is, even they can’t handle 800 shooters.

Edited by Possum Skinner, SASS#60697
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7 hours ago, Maddog McCoy SASS #5672 said:

Sparta Il has a great range and can handle big events ( 12 berms, over 1000 camp sites) but the number in our club has gotten smaller over the the years. However, the range is for rent and run by the state and if somebody wanted to put on a a big match there, it could be done with the proper planning. Hopefully we will get a new Governor this year and  one candidate is from Southern Illinois and gun friendly. 

The only negative is they only have two hotels close to the range. If you are not camping , it can be a pain to stay in another town and drive thirty minutes each way to shoot

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There are several ranges that could handle an EOT sized event. Logistics and infrastructure are a deal breaker for most. If the ranges aren't close to motels, campgrounds, restaurants, etc shooters will not return. Also, the range must be close to major highways. Ben Avery has everything needed including nice weather. I'd like to see them build 8 more berms or walls in order to allow downrange movement.

 

 

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5 hours ago, Phantom, SASS #54973 said:

Ummm...WR is essentially now EOT...:mellow:


Got some of my details mixed up.   The old Winter Range is indeed now EoT.  Winter Range was the National Championship, and EoT is the World Championship.

The National Championship was moved to Oklahoma.  I thought it was still called Winter Range, but has changed its name to Land Run.  A detail I overlooked.

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5 hours ago, Possum Skinner, SASS#60697 said:

H.K., we had divisional matches (essentially your seasonals), but they never really caught on and quickly went away.

 

I’ve been to a lot of matches in multiple states and besides EOT in N.M., Mule Camp was the only match I’ve seen that I think could handle an event of that size.  As big and great as Comin at Cha is, even they can’t handle 800 shooters.

 

You hit on the difficulties for sure.  I just wonder with the way that gasoline prices have gone through the roof, maybe that dynamic has changed.  Maybe the divisionals or seasonals could work now as people like me in New England would find it too expensive to travel to Arizona, but could pull off a trip tp Pennsylvania.  Same for folks in Florida could make it to someplace in Tennessee.   Crowds would be big, but not EoT huge.  Maybe.  There must be at least one club in each quarter that could pull off a  300-500 shooter match.

Or maybe it is wishful thinking.
 

 

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5 hours ago, H. K. Uriah, SASS #74619 said:


Got some of my details mixed up.   The old Winter Range is indeed now EoT.  Winter Range was the National Championship, and EoT is the World Championship.

The National Championship was moved to Oklahoma.  I thought it was still called Winter Range, but has changed its name to Land Run.  A detail I overlooked.

Land Run had always been Land Run.

 

Nothing changed names. 

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1 hour ago, Captain Bill Burt said:

It’s wishful thinking. Those of us on the east coast will remain the red headed stepchildren of SASS.

Doubt it.

 

Mark my words, EOT will be at Indiana... Unless maybe relationships change.

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When it comes to big shoots, my range in Nebraska has run a number of big shoots successfully, including 4H nationals and some big 3 Gun events. We definitely have the facility to pull off a big cowboy shoot, but unfortunately, not the workforce. We can barely pull off a state shoot, and then it takes me weeks to recover afterwards, so I don't see us ever doing or trying to get bigger events

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2 hours ago, StirrupTrouble said:

When it comes to big shoots, my range in Nebraska has run a number of big shoots successfully, including 4H nationals and some big 3 Gun events. We definitely have the facility to pull off a big cowboy shoot, but unfortunately, not the workforce. We can barely pull off a state shoot, and then it takes me weeks to recover afterwards, so I don't see us ever doing or trying to get bigger events

The logistics of a match like that make my head hurt just thinking about it, much less having to do it.

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What a club needs to host a match with 800+ shooters.

 

First and foremost are the volunteers to make it happen. Matches this big take a lot of very dedicated volunteers. Without them everything else is moot.

 

Second is a range with enough parking to handle the number of vehicles that will be there every day. 800 shooters means 500 to 600 trucks and cars will need a place to park. It has to be capable of being utilized in all weather conditions.  A 40 acre pasture will handle all the vehicles plus RVs when it is dry but add a couple inches of rain and it soon becomes a mud pit vice a parking lot.

 

Third is amenities in the immediate vicinity. Need RV parking, Hotels, and Restaurants.

 

Lastly is enough shooting bays and steel.  I list this last as it is often the easiest criteria to meet but without meeting the first 3 it really doesn't matter. 

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On 3/1/2022 at 10:13 AM, Possum Skinner, SASS#60697 said:

...Are there any at all east of the Mississippi?

 

Believe one post replied (Sparta) before your OP was hijacked.

Edited by Matthew Duncan
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On 3/1/2022 at 1:49 PM, Badlands Bob #61228 said:

Having a facility to handle that size match is one thing.  Having the volunteer workforce is another.  

I know of several ranges that have the space east of the Mississippi, but the membership is down, and it takes quite a few of dedicated folks to pull this off.

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On 3/1/2022 at 10:29 PM, Snakebite Dust SASS 75484 said:

The only negative is they only have two hotels close to the range. If you are not camping , it can be a pain to stay in another town and drive thirty minutes each way to shoot

 

I currently do just that for a couple of matches each year.  After having been in the army for 28 years, I don't do camping.

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On 3/1/2022 at 3:58 PM, Yul Lose said:

Having seen firsthand the work that has been and is being done by a tremendously dedicated army of Arizona Rangers I would really hesitate moving it from where it is just for that reason alone. Many don’t realize that the preparation for EOT 2023 is in the planning stages now and come Monday morning the work will begin again.

We have another winner!

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22 hours ago, Frontier Lone Rider said:

 

I currently do just that for a couple of matches each year.  After having been in the army for 28 years, I don't do camping.

My dad who's 93, Korean war veteran, doesn't camp either. 

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