The National Rifle & Pistol Matches at Camp Perry start today.
"The National Matches and the Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) were created in 1903 by President Theodore Roosevelt and Congress to preserve the heritage of American marksmanship. The CPM continues to promote firearms safety training and rifle practice, with special emphasis on youth.
The 2002 matches were the largest in recent years and matches and shooting schools have been expanded for this year.
Take a stroll along Perry Street in Port Clinton and you'll know the National Matches are in town. With as many as 6,000 shooters on the firing lines over the next month, the matches are a bonanza for local businesses. Large signs at motels and restaurants greet the competitors, welcoming the men and women who range from everyday shooters to the finest marksmen in the country.
Tomorrow's First Shot Ceremony has been changed to a late afternoon event with Rep. Marcy Kaptur of Toledo pulling the trigger. The 5:30 p.m. ceremony features a color guard from the U.S. Coast Guard station in nearby Marblehead, the 122nd Army National Guard Band and recognition of past champions of the National Matches.
Tomorrow's ceremony and all of the National Matches are open to the public with no admission charge.
The prestigious matches are called the World Series of shooting, but the competition is not the only thing that lures crowds of shooting fans to Camp Perry. The shooting exhibits and retail shops set up during the National Matches are very popular, as are the shooting schools."
Ah. refreshing to see a town welcome gun owning tourists isn't it?
"The NRA National Pistol Championships are held from Tuesday through July 20. The NRA National Smallbore Rifle Championships are July 24-27, followed by the NRA National Smallbore Rifle Prone Championships (July 28-Aug. 1); CMP National Trophy Rifle Matches (Aug. 5-9); NRA National High Power Rifle Championships (Aug. 10-14); and the unique Long Range Championships (Aug. 15-18).
The shooting schools include the CMP Small Arms Firing School - Pistol (tomorrow and Tuesday); NRA Pistol Coach School (tomorrow through Wednesday); the NRA Smallbore Rifle Coach School (July 24-25); NRA American Sport Education Program (July 27); NRA Junior Smallbore Rifle Camp (July 27-Aug. 1); NRA High Power Coach School (Aug. 2-5); CMP Advanced Junior High Power Rifle Marksmanship Clinic (Aug. 2-4); CMP Small Arms Firing School (Aug. 3-4); and Long Range Firing School (Aug. 16-20).
For information on the National Matches, call the CMP (419-635-2141), visit www.odcmp.com or call the Ottawa County Visitors Bureau (1-800-441-1271)."
I have wanted to go to Camp Perry for a while. Of course just being a spectator would be enjoyable as hell. But to compete at Perry you have to know a little more than which end of the gun to place against your shoulder (although that helps to the nth degree). These are the people that people think of when they think of riflemen.
So if you're in or around the Ohio area, take some time & go see what riflemen can do. & take some pics. If you can't publish them online yourself e mail me & I'll either help you figure out how to or I'll post them myself. & most importantly - find out what equipment the top shooters are using - what brand of barrels, what slings, what sights, etc... cause these guys don't make it to Perry with equipment that doesn't work.