Tag Archives: second amendment

Port Meet Up at Garden State Shooting Center

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Summer is here and so are the opportunities to have some fun at the range!  A new range has just opened in Lakewood, NJ and S.A.W. Shooting Club is spreading our wings to start a new southern chapter of our women’s social and shooting club.

Garden State Shooting Center, a newly renovated twelve port, 25 yard, indoor range, opened its doors a few weeks ago to an excited shooting community.  The range is open to the public and also offers memberships and rentals.  A spacious, well stocked firearms retail area is connected to the range as well as a comfortable lounge for relaxing or waiting for your port to be available.

The entire interior has been remodeled and updated both inside the range with spacious updated ports and in the lounge area with televisions, couches and a large classroom for training classes.

With the S.A.W. Club going strong in North Jersey with our monthly port meet ups for women and many events for new and more experienced shooters, we are taking the group just a little bit South, to grow our social circle and include as many women in New Jersey as possible.  Our first event at the Garden State Shooting Center will be on July 9th at 7 pm.  Like our Port Meet Ups in Woodland Park, this event is for women with all levels of firearms experience.  Whether you bring your own firearms, or choose to rent something from the range’s inventory, we will also have firearms available for sharing and instructors on hand to help with beginners.  If you have never been to a S.A.W. event, now is the time to see what it’s all about! The cost for this event is $15 per person. For more information on how to register for our  upcoming events and become a member, please go to our website S.A.W. Shooting Club or email us at sawshootingclub@gmail.com.  You can also join us on Facebook in our closed group (Closed Group) or follow us our public page (SAW).

Our upcoming events include beginners classes, member only events, port meet ups, self-defense for women as well as kids events!

 

 

 

One Year Proud and Strong

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The new club poster is hanging up in the Woodland Park Range where we have a monthly port meet up.

The Second Amendment Women Shooting Club is getting ready to celebrate our first wildly successful year with our Anniversary Port Meet up on March 29th. A year ago when we broke out with our first event, the Concealed Carry Holster Show, we could not have anticipated that only twelve months later we would have the fantastic group of active and engaged women we have today!

When I started shooting over five years ago, I still remember being in awe of the lack of women’s events and activity in the shooting community in this area.  Even as the media continues to report that there is a rise in female firearms owners in the last few years, clearly women have been actively participating in hunting and other shooting sports throughout history.

When we started the club, the goal was to not only create a place to train and introduce new female shooters to the sport, but to gather together a group of confident, self-aware and responsible women who would stand up for our families, our freedom and our right to self-protect.  I believe we have been successful thus far in our goals.  We have introduced over 100 women to shooting in a safe, responsible and fun atmosphere.  Some have joined to further their shooting skills and knowledge, some have joined for the social aspect of having a like-minded group of women to both go to the range with and spend time with outside the shooting environment.   Our club has become a warm and welcoming place for women of all ages and demographics, and with the introduction of our children’s firearms and safety events, we have become a family place as well.

This past week I attended a local event, a discussion on Guns, Safety and Solutions.  I sat there and listened to one of the panelists, Mandi Perlmutter from Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, parade alleged statistics that would have one believe that women neither want to or should be “burdened” with the responsibility to protect themselves from becoming victims of crime. As I listened, I reflected on all the women who have come to our events and joined our club.  Intelligent, independent, brave, responsible;  these women are not victims.  These women are proud and strong!

When I leave my house every morning, I have many goals for the day, but only one is really important.  When I walk out the door of my house each morning, my one goal is to make darn sure I return through it to my children each evening.  When a group of “Moms” say that the “onus” of my protection should not lie with me – I question who does it lie with?  When the response time for police officers is upwards to thirty minutes in our area, what words will be used to comfort my children if God Forbid something happens to me?  Your mother was not responsible for her own protection?  That she did all should could to make sure she was here for you by calling for help?  That is pure nonsense and inexcusable!  I teach my children to be responsible and productive members of our society, of course, at their age appropriate ability, but we have no excuses and no participation awards in our house.   My children expect me to stand up for my own life, not to rely on anyone else and that is why my ten year old looks up to me and in his own words and description,  told me he doesn’t need any further protection as I am his “bodyguard”.

Whether its self-defense classes on situational awareness and ways to protect yourself inside and outside the home, or classes on how to become proficient and confident with your firearm (for use within the laws of your state), the SAW Shooting Club will continue to provide the means for women to become educated in how to protect themselves.  We are fortunate to have many police officers and first responders who work tirelessly to protect our communities.  But there are only so many of them, and at the end of the day, if I am not ready to defend myself and my children how can I ask anyone else to do so for me?

As we expand our events throughout NJ and PA in the coming year, we hope we will double, if not triple, our club membership.  We are listening to our members and will continue to provide everything from basic firearms and self-defense training to advanced tactical classes.  We also will continue to add opportunities to learn new skills, such as hunting and becoming involved in competitions like IDPA which are both educational and entertaining.

For the coming year we have added some new sponsors and supporters.  We appreciate everyone who becomes involved with supporting our goals, however I cannot close without expressing our gratitude for the incredible support we get from the Woodland Park Range staff and most importantly, Anthony Colandro. We could not have done it without you and we hope to continue to work together in the coming years!

-SS

Upcoming Events:

March 29th Anniversary Port Meet Up

April 6th Monthly Meet Up

April 14th Shotgun Refresher

April 28th – SAW Self Defense in Garfield Location

Kids All .22 Event

 

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Last night the Second Amendment Women Shooting Club hosted a safe gun handling and Introduction to Shooting event for children ages 8-15. What an amazing night! For all the instructors out there, we don’t have to tell you how incredible it is to watch new shooters take their first shots, and when its kids, its smiles all around.

To begin the night, our instructors presented the Eddie Eagle Gun Safety program, which informs children what to do should they encounter a firearm without an adult present. Everyone who participated received an Eddie Eagle Challenge Coin for being able to correctly identify the four rules – Stop, Don’t Touch, Leave the Area, Tell an Adult. This is an important lesson even though we would continue on to learn the rules of safe shooting before moving to the range so the kids could take their first shots. Our range portion took place under the careful supervision of parents and certified firearms instructors.

For most of the children in attendance, this would be the first time they would be inside a shooting range, however several had a chance to go target shooting or hunting with their parents before coming to the event. After going over gun and range safety, as well as introducing the kids to the firearms we would be using, we put on our eye and ear protection and headed into the range.

We had the range to ourselves which made for a very comfortable, relaxed atmosphere and all the firearms we used were .22 caliber. The choices included a Ruger 10/22 rifle, a KSA Crickett, a Ruger SR22, a Smith and Wesson Model 63 and for some extra fun, a Smith and Wesson M&P 15-22. Each participant had a chance to try each of the firearms available. After everyone had a chance to try everything once, the parents were welcome to enjoy some family target shooting with their children and their own firearms.

As you can see from the pictures, it really was smiles all around. Hugs and high fives; and targets were saved to be hung on bedroom walls at home. The environment was safe, friendly and fun. On the way out the kids were already asking when the next event would be!

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This event would not have been possible without the continued support of the Woodland Park Range, providing the venue and as always, anything we needed. Parents and friends donated ammunition and snacks and of course our experienced, NRA instructors volunteered their time – we couldn’t have done it without you!

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Our Instructors

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Shot Show Report – Women Gun Owners

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For the past several years, the NSSF Shot Show has held a press conference to present the latest on women’s involvement in the shooting sports and industry in general. The first year the topic was presented, it was revealed there were more presenters at the podium than attendees; but certainly not any more. This year, it was standing room only! The room was packed with interest in the incredible increase in participation and buying power of gun owning women in the past year.

A comprehensive report was revealed by the NSSF with topics researched including everything from what women are buying, how much they are spending, whether or not training is important right down to how comfortable we feel at the gun counter.   For those of us in the field, women who are involved in hunting and competitive shooting, as well as teaching, and outreach to increase accessibility to gun ownership to an ever increasing number of women, the new report brings no surprises.

The study is chock full of wonderful statistics based on a majority respondent profile of an educated, middle aged, married, Caucasian mother.   Leading women in the shooting industry were consulted on the types of questions and topics that would reveal the true interest and involvement of today’s gun owning women.

The average women in the study owned a gun for at least five years, however a large proportion owned a gun for over ten years.   A significant portion, about 30% of participants in the study became a gun owner in the past three years, showing a demographic change in female gun owners, since the newest gun owners are between 18-34 years of age.   It does not come as a surprise that most women are still purchasing with the main purpose of self-defense and home protection, but more and more are seeing the social aspect of shooting with family and friends as important as well as an interest in learning to hunt.

Overall, women felt more confident and safe as gun owners and the fit and feel of a gun in their hand was extremely important.  Guns are not typically an impulse purchase for women. According the study, 67.3% of women are spending at least a few months and up to a year choosing the right gun.   And of special note to manufacturers, their research includes visiting the websites of manufacturers as one of the main sources of information in order to make that purchase.

The buying power of women is also significant as the study reveals that female gun owners spent an average of $870 on their first gun purchase in the last year and the majority are buying semi-automatic pistols.   Women also spent an average of $405 on accessories in the past year, including items such as gun cleaning kits, targets and ear protection.  The availability of feminine accessories was not a factor in gun purchases.  When it comes to non-traditional colors and patterns on guns women either liked them or did not.  There isn’t much gray area here.  However if women specific accessories were available, such as holsters, grips and apparel, the study indicates that there would be a market for them among a select segment of women.   And as women become more involved in hunting and shooting sports and begin to seek out guns and apparel that fit them better, about a quarter of the women polled said that they had trouble finding items that fit them.

One of the more interesting outcomes of the study reveals that women are seeking out training in high numbers.   Almost three quarters of women have taken at least one training class whether it be a concealed carry class, hunters education or range safety instruction.   And on average women continue to take around three gun training classes. In general, women are not buying a gun and a box of ammunition and throwing it in a drawer.  The amount of training a woman participates in also has a correlation with how much women spend on guns and accessories. Not surprisingly, as women increase their confidence and knowledge of guns, they are willing and enthusiastic to become more involved in shooting activities.   Women have a tremendous amount of buying power and this should be of significant interest to ranges with training programs and retail sales.

Certainly many women’s shooting clubs are already seeing this trend.   At the Second Amendment Women Shooting Club (SAW), the NSSF research confirms what we already know, that women will seek out other women, will value training more, and spend more on a gun and accessories than those that don’t train.   Our monthly port meet ups for women only are packed and our members are showing increased interest in advanced training, classes in gun cleaning, and assistance with well thought out and researched gun purchases.  The research indicates that women respond positively to other women shooters.  And that “women only events” will encourage some women to participate more frequently.   We have certainly seen that trend.

We have all heard that women are the fastest growing segment in the firearms industry.  Whether the introduction to firearms came through a family member, friend or some outside influence, we want to learn more, increase our confidence and get out there and have fun.. and we will do it safely.

(All statistics are from the NSSF Report – Women Gun Owners 2014 Edition)

December Port Meet Up – Ruger LCR

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This past Monday was December port meet up time for the SAW club at the range in Woodland Park. Everyone took a much needed night off from their holiday preparations to get together for a ladies night at the range.  We welcomed a few new shooters this month – and as a whole our groups’ targets are looking pretty good!  Last month we started our “gun of the month” series with the Keltec Sub 2000; and this month we turn to carry guns with the Ruger LCR.

Buying a carry gun is no different than making any other firearm purchase, it’s a good idea to try out what you are buying.  Everyone has a different opinion on what is “best” and the only real judge is the person who will be using it.  However, as a woman and a pistol instructor, I have found that while many women like revolvers, a snub nosed .38 is not a favorite.  A short barrel and a light weight frame results in a snappy recoil that can actually hurt the hand.  Some will say in a defensive situation you can deal with the pain.  Well, yes and no.  Whatever firearm you choose it is never a good idea to throw it in a drawer to have it “if you need it”.  Practice and muscle memory will make your shot placement more accurate and if you are dreading firing your gun, all the features in the world that make it a great “carry gun” aren’t going to help you.

The barrel on the Ruger LCR is just under 2 inches and the gun itself weighs around 13 ounces. It has a shrouded hammer and a fairly smooth double action trigger pull.  The nice Hogue grip makes the LCR a bit more comfortable to shoot;  I have small hands and it is fairly comfortable fit.  About ten women took a try shooting .38spl out of the LCR.  The responses ranged from “ouch”, to “one round is enough, thank you very much”, to “it is too small for my hand”, and then, finally, “I really like that gun!”  So, out of ten women who tried the gun, we had only one resounding yes.

When I tried the LCR I was able to get a nice group, but I did not find it enjoyable to shoot.  It does have a limited capacity, but then so does a Body Guard .380.  After about 20 rounds though, I was ready to call it a day.

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Based on the overall club review of the LCR I have to give it a thumbs down.  However, there are many other carry gun options.  We hope to go through them all as we make our way through the extensive rental menu at the Woodland Park Range.

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IDPA for Everyone

Our Intro IDPA group in Hellertown, PA
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So you have taken a first step or intro to pistol class, you have been shooting at paper at the range for some time and you may be thinking what’s next?  There aren’t many opportunities in this area to practice shooting from a holster or doing much more than standing in a port, but one outlet that is available to shooters of all skill levels, beginner through advanced, are matches run by the International Defensive Pistol Association (IDPA).
IDPA is a shooting sport that was founded in 1996 and simulates self-defense and real life encounters.  Anyone can get involved in shooting matches as beginners are welcome and the cost of necessary equipment is minimal and limited to practical gear shooters most likely already own.
Recently, the Second Amendment Women Shooting Club/SAW sponsored an all-female introduction to IDPA shooting for our members.  Not everyone can afford to take advanced tactical classes and certainly not on a monthly basis.  IDPA offers an inexpensive opportunity to practice moving and shooting and experience how you will react when shooting under stress.  And our members were ready for the challenge!  Granted, the stress is not induced by your door being forced open at 2am and you having to confront a bad guy in your pajamas, however, there is some stress that comes from competition shooting even if you are only “competing” with yourself.
Monthly “local” matches usually cost between $10 and $ 20 . One even includes a pizza lunch on top of a full day of shooting various scenarios. All you need to bring is your firearm, three magazines, a holster/belt, and enough ammunition for the day.  After your first match a concealment vest or garment will be needed as well , and you will need to join IDPA for a nominal fee.  No special competition gear is allowed in IDPA, this would be the firearm you would use for home defense or plinking at the range.
A typical scenario starts with your gun holstered and Safety Officer pressing the buzzer on the timer.  Targets have an order to be engaged in, some will be moving,  some will be aimed at from behind cover,  sometimes there may even be an “injured” bystander who needs to be retrieved while the shooter continues to engage the targets.  All of the matches are performed in a safe and fun atmosphere which provides a perfect environment to learn about your firearm,  how you handle it under stress and how you respond to pressure while shooting, even if that “pressure” is your time elapsed flashing on the timer when the buzzer goes off and you show all clear with your firearm.
SAW had the pleasure of an introductory class taught by two highly ranked competitors, Ken Ortbach and  Joanna Lenczewska, this past month at the Hellertown Sportsman Center in PA.  Our students ranged from beginner to intermediate/advanced, but none had participated in an IDPA match.  IDPA ranks their participants and offers different stages so that all interested individuals can compete and be challenged.  Several of our members are continuing to participate in local matches.
Another intro class will be scheduled soon in Easton PA.  It is worth checking out, even if you just go to observe or pay your $10 to $20 to hang out with a group of like-minded individuals.

I WILL NOT COMPLY

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The New Jersey State Senate is set to vote on Monday on the Magazine/Gun Ban which, if it passes and is signed by the Governor, will reduce the magazine capacity in New Jersey to ten rounds.  New Jersey already has a magazine capacity reduction law in effect at fifteen rounds.  This further reduction will do nothing to address the “reason” the bill was introduced which is stated as in response to the shooting in Arizona which injured Cathy Giffords.  Magazines can be changed by even the most inexperienced shooter in as few as eight seconds (Chasing NJ video).  This feel good legislation is again, simply another form of a gun ban on New Jersey’s legal gun owners, because as we all know, criminals do not follow laws.  If this magazine limit passes, it will automatically turn law abiding New Jersey gun owners into felons.  How will the police manage enforcing this new law if it passes?  How will gun owners be compensated for the loss of their property and is the probable expense worth it to the state when balanced against the imagined “benefit”?  And in the words of Anthony Colandro owner of Gun for Hire and the Woodland Park Shooting Range, will I get three ten round magazines back if I turn in two fifteen round ones? Anthony says it best in his testimony last week to the New Jersey Law and Public Safety Committee.  Watch below and share it!  The “I Will Not Comply” movement is strong in New Jersey!

I WILL NOT COMPLY TESTIMONY VIDEO

Gun Safety in the Home

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An ever increasing number of people are purchasing firearms for home protection today.  Many of these people are first time firearms owners who have decided for various reasons to add a layer of protection for their families.   This means that many homes with firearms will also have children present and while good firearms safety storage measures are important to block access to all unauthorized persons, its especially important to consider how to safeguard your children as well as to introduce them to any firearms you have in your home.

It is the responsibility of all gun owners to store their guns safely.  New Jersey law (Statute 2C:58-15) requires that firearms be inaccessible to minors.  It states “A person who knows or reasonably should know that a minor is likely to gain access to a loaded firearm at a premises under the person’s control commits a disorderly persons offense if a minor gains access to the firearm, unless the person: (1) Stores the firearm in a securely locked box or container; (2) Stores the firearm in a location which a reasonable person would believe to be secure; or (3) Secures the firearm with a trigger lock.”  Other states have similar laws restricting a minor’s access to firearms and with exclusions where applicable.

If you take it a step further, I would suggest that it is a good idea that all occupants of the home be educated – on their level – on how to safely handle, or not handle a firearm.  There is no right or wrong age or amount of information given to a child regarding firearms, it is solely up to the discretion of parents to decide what is appropriate in their situation.

The first question many new gun owners will ask is if the gun is meant for home protection, how can it be stored unloaded?  Of course, any firearm that will be used for personal and home protection will need to be stored ready for immediate use and easily accessible to those authorized to use it.  There are many ways to store a gun as “inaccessible” but the first question following how the gun will be used is who will be present in the home.  When children are present, the best gun storage will be in a locked safe.  As children are naturally curious, guns that are stored in the top of closets or attics should not be considered inaccessible to children.

There are a number of options when choosing a safe to store your home defense firearm.  Safes that use keys will make it difficult to access the gun quickly, so a better choice would be a keypad design or a biometric fingerprint safe that is secured inside a drawer or is attached to a wall or nightstand.  With a biometric safe, several fingerprints can be stored in the memory of the safe that will allow quick access, usually within seconds, to the loaded firearm inside. Biometric safes can be finicky however, and some people will have a more difficult time having their fingerprints recognized immediately.  Another choice is a safe with a digital keypad.  The keypad would have four buttons set in the pattern of a hand and the user programs a set order in which to hit the buttons to open the safe.  With practice, this sort of safe is easy to use both quickly and in the dark.  In order to access the firearm quickly, regular practice, even nightly, is recommended.  A good trick is to hide something you need inside, like your car keys or prescription medicine until you can open the safe without even thinking about it.  There are also safes that combine fingerprint recognition and a keypad in case it fails to open using one of the methods.  All safes of this kind will have back up keys, be sure to keep them in a separate location from the safe, and inaccessible to children.

Firearms that will not be used for home defense can be stored in a safe with any type of lock as they don’t need to be accessed immediately.  A common design of a safe for storing long guns would have a combination lock on the door.

It should go without saying that anyone handling firearms follow the rules of safe gun handling.  Always keep your gun pointed in a safe direction.  Always keep your finger off the trigger until ready to shoot.  Always keep your gun unloaded until ready to use it.  It is important to stress the word “always” each time you mention safe gun handing, especially with new shooters and when introducing firearms to children.

For very young children, the best education concerning firearms is to stress that they should not be touched under any circumstances and to leave the area and tell an adult immediately if a gun is present.  Some parents may decide that it is better not to mention to their children that firearms are present in the home at all.  It is up to each family to decide the appropriate level of knowledge for their children.

I have found that because children are naturally curious, it is hard to hide anything from them.  Each of my children had the opportunity to see, touch and handle a gun in our home under my supervision.  They have all been educated on the rules of safe gun handling and have been told to only handle firearms in my presence and with my permission.  I have also made it clear that anytime they wish to see a gun in our home all they have to do is ask.  If you decide to offer this option to your children, and I believe it is a good one, be prepared to respond immediately when they ask you to see your gun.  Also be prepared to take the time to allow them to handle the gun, safely, if they so choose.  Doing this will take away the mystery from the gun and by dropping what you are doing you are showing your child how important it is that an adult be present when guns are present and it takes away the mystique of the gun.   Be prepared for an inquisitive child to test you and ask you at a very inconvenient time to see your gun.  If you comply, you will find that you have passed the “test” and the interest and thrill will quickly wear off.  It is unlikely the child will continue to ask you to see the gun.  By doing this you have also added another level of protection for your child.  If your child has had exposure to your gun under your supervision, it is unlikely he will feel the need to handle a gun, for example, when visiting a friend’s house.  Further, since he has the information you provided to him, he knows to leave the area and tell an adult.

When making the decision to inform your child about guns in your home, remember that children will share information with anyone they come into contact with, their teachers, friends, even the cashier at the supermarket.   So consider how open you want to be about the fact that you own guns and weigh that against the kind of safety cushion you provide your child with by introducing him to the guns in your home.  Also consider that if you tell your child about your guns but then ask him to keep it a secret, it presents a difficult message for a less mature child.  It is difficult for some children to process what information belongs as private family information and what can be shared with others.  You don’t want to have your child think there is anything “wrong” with the fact that his family owns guns.  The more matter of fact you are about it, the less enticing the idea of sharing the information will be to your child.