Shot Show contact: Irwin Greenstein (443) 799-5974.

Shotgun Life Marks One-Year Anniversary With New Advertisers: Blaser, Fausti, Ithaca, KRIEGHOFF AND ZOLI

As Industry’s First Online Magazine, Shotgun Life Helps Advertisers Cut Through Internet Clutter With Effective Search Engine Optimization

 

Pikesville, MD – Jan. 18, 2010 – Shotgun Life (www.shotgunlife.com), the first online magazine dedicated to the best in wing and clays shooting, marks its one-year anniversary with five major shotgun manufacturers becoming new advertisers.

In the past 30 days alone, Shotgun Life signed on Blaser USA, Fausti USA, Ithaca Gun Company, Krieghoff International and Antonio Zoli North America.

These makers of fine shotguns join Shotgun Life’s original charter advertisers including Classic Upland Supply, Electronic Shooters Protection, Griffin & Howe, Ivory Beads, Kick-EEZ and Randolph Engineering.

“Makers of fine shotguns and their customers have for so many years enjoyed the rare luxury of being served by several upscale magazines,” said Irwin Greenstein, Publisher of Shotgun Life. “Even so, we have clearly proven that the marketplace has been starving for quality editorial and glossy aesthetics in a dynamic, online publication.”

The Shotgun Life technology platform is designed from the ground up for search engine optimization. With more clay and wingshooters relying on the Internet for product information, Shotgun Life’s stories often appear high in the search results, helping enthusiasts cut through the typical gun-for-sale clutter that proliferates on the Internet.

In addition to the online magazine, Shotgun Life publishes two free e-letters whose mission is to educate clays shooters. The Shotgun Life OSP 3-Minute Coach is distributed every weekday with shooting tips from Gil & Vicki Ash, owners of the renown OSP Shooting School. The e-letter is used for direct marketing to sell OSP’s full line of instructional products and services.

Every Wednesday, the Shotgun Life E-Letter features tutorials from world-class clays instructors such as Jack Bart, Phil Kiner, George Lehr, Anthony Matarese, Gary Phillips, Joe Rankin, Jim Sarkauskas, Bob Uknalis, John Woolley and others.

When it comes to quality editorial, Shotgun Life has attracted some of the best writers. Among them are Chris Batha, Al Hague, Jennifer L.S. Pearsall, Michael Sabbeth, Jerry Sinkovec and Nick Sisley.

“Shotgun Life’s total coverage of upscale, recreational sporting clays has exceeded all the print magazines combined,” Greenstein said. “We are the only publication, whether it’s print or digital, to provide extensive coverage of both wingshooting and sporting clays – providing an integrated advertising and marketing venue for the industry.”

Shotgun Life also operates a forum that hosts organizations such as the NSSA, NSCA and the U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance.

 

Media Contact:
Ryan Holmes
Bernard + Associates
(775) 323-6828
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

For advertising opportunities, please contact Bernard + Associates, Jeff Thruston,

(775) 323-6828 or at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

For more information about Shotgun Life, please visit www.shotgunlife.com.

Published in Press Releases
Friday, 01 January 2010 00:00

Blue Creek Sport Shooting Complex and Preserve

Montana’s newest sporting clays facility is up and running in less than a year. Jim Bailey, owner and general manager is in the construction business and had planned to use the land for an upscale home development, and had started to do that when the housing market went south.  He then gave a lot of thought to how else to utilize the land for a profitable return since he already had done some work in developing roads, etc. After some discussion with some friends he decided to develop a sport shooting complex.

Published in Jerry Sinkovec

Imagine a game of sporting clays without the hassle of a clipboard and pencil.

As you walk up to the cage, you don’t have to search for a place to rest the clipboard that holds the score sheet. Where should I put it? Lean it against the gun rack? Balance it on the railing? Leave it in the cart and remember the scores to write down later? Hand it off to a friend who hands it to a friend and so on until eventually someone in the squad ends up dealing with the clunky thing?

Published in Destinations

Common wisdom says one thing, Bobby Fowler Jr.’s trophy case says another.

Since he first started shooting competitively in 1993, Fowler has won about 150 titles in sporting clays and FITASC. He’s dominated the sports so thoroughly, that his middle initials should be HOA. Every gauge, on both sides of the Atlantic, in his home state of Texas – no tournament is safe from Fowler’s monumental skills in achieving the highest overall average.

Wednesday, 28 October 2009 04:56

Clays Shooting Bliss at Seven Springs

How about a big, juicy Beretta Burger?

Or maybe a spicy Krieghoff Crabcake Sandwich is more to your liking.

Want something with a little more roughage? You can always order the Shotgun House Salad with lots of greens and homemade dressing.

These are some of the menu selections from The Grille at the Sporting Clays Lodge of the Seven Springs Mountain Lodge in Seven Springs, Pennsylvania. You can chow down in the classic chalet setting or grab a table on the 7,000-square-foot deck with a dazzling view of the valley below.

Published in Clay Sports
Tuesday, 15 September 2009 01:00

9½ Hours With Gil & Vicki Ash

If you’ve ever watched Gil and Vicki Ash on their instructional DVDs, you walk away with the feeling that you really want to spend some time with these earnest Texans. They’re smart, funny and engaging. Well, what we discovered over a 9½ hour workshop with them is that they are exactly the same people in person as they are on your TV screen.

Published in Feature Stories

Sign-up at Shotgun Life to Receive Daily Shooting Tips From the Library of Gil & Vicki’s Optimum Shotgun Performance (OSP) Shooting School

PIKESVILLE, Md. – July 20, 2009 – Shotgun Life announced today the new Gil & Vicki Ash OSP store for their instructional books, DVDs and other products and services designed to help shotgun owners improve their game.

The new OSP store on Shotgun Life is the first online retail venture outside of Gil &
Vicki’s own domain. The venture underscores the common commitment by OSP and Shotgun Life to make the shotgun sports more enjoyable and rewarding for shooters of all experience levels.

In conjunction with its new OSP store, Shotgun Life launched its free “Shotgun Life’s OSP 3-Minute Coach.” Subscribers will receive shooting tips via email Monday through Friday that are excerpted from Gil & Vicki’s many books and DVDs. Shooters can sign up now at http://www.shotgunlife.com.

The Shotgun Life OSP store is located at

http://www.ospschool.com/products_programsshotgunlife.html.

“Shotgun Life helps shooters steer clear of the conflicting instructional advice that’s dished up in the all those online forums,” said Gil. “We saw Shotgun Life as an extension of our philosophy, and that’s to get new shooters started on the right foot and help experienced shooters figure out those little tics and quirks that drive them crazy.”

“As the first online magazine devoted to wing and clays shooting, Shotgun Life is in a great position to help Gil & Vicki reach as many shotgun owners as possible,” said Irwin Greenstein, Publisher of Shotgun Life. “Shotgun Life is free, timely and women-friendly – breaking down the barriers that have held back so many shooters and advertisers frustrated with the limitations of the six-times-per-year publishing cycle that still persists as the industry model.”

Through OSP, Gil & Vicki provide a complete instructional package. No other instructors in the world have the depth of products, knowledge and experience for successfully teaching clays and wing shooting. Each year, Gil & Vicki add new products and services so that OSP continues to meet the ever-growing needs of the shotgun sports community.

The Shotgun Life OSP store will feature Gil & Vicki’s best-selling books and DVDs.

The books include:

  • If It Ain’t Broke, Fix It!
  • Sporting Clays Consistency: You Gotta Be Out of Your Mind!
  • The Coaching Hour Chronicles series

DVDs include:

  • 14 Tips to Better Shotgunning
  • How to Practice & Understanding the Move
  • Strategy & How to Play the Game
  • Perfecting Your Gun Mount
  • The Three Routines in Sporting Clays
  • Choke Selection Made Simple

Visit www.ospschool.com to learn more.

Shotgun Life

Shotgun Life is the first online magazine devoted to the best in wing and clays shooting. For more information about Shotgun Life visit http://www.shotgunlife.com.

Media Contacts:

For Shotgun Life:
Bernard + Associates
Ryan Holmes
(775) 323-6828

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

For OSP:
Media Direct
Kim Cahalan
(309) 944.5341

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Published in Press Releases
Media Contact:
Ryan Holmes
Bernard + Associates
775-323-6828

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

SHOTGUN LIFE IS FIRST PUBLISHER TO COUPLE PREMIUM ONLINE MAGAZINE WITH AUTHORITATIVE FORUMS FOR GREATEST ADVERTISER EXPOSURE

Shotgun Life Donates Forums to the National Skeet Shooting Association and

National Sporting Clays Association

PIKESVILLE, Md. – June 16, 2009 – Shotgun Life (www.shotgunlife.com) expanded its online franchise with new, authoritative forums – giving advertisers the most powerful integrated program for reaching customers and prospects on the Internet.

The Shotgun Life forums are intended to satisfy the unmet needs of both shotgun owners seeking accurate information and industry participants looking for a quality venue to establish productive relationships directly with shotgun owners.

The forums are fully integrated into the Shotgun Life format, giving forum members a seamless transition to the online magazine, which covers the best in wing and clays shooting.

“All too often people in our industry believe that the Internet is exclusively about banner-ad clicks,” said Irwin Greenstein, publisher of Shotgun Life. “While that’s certainly an important part of the equation, where the Internet really shines is in establishing a two-way conversation with the shooting community – to prove that you are a trustworthy authority whose brand name merits serious consideration.”

The Shotgun Life forums are located at http://www.shotgunlife.com/forum and are available immediately. The forums can also be located by going to http://www.shotgunlife.com and clicking the Forum tab.

In addition to launching its new forums, Shotgun Life has recognized the enormous strides that the National Skeet Shooting Association (NSSA) and National Sporting Clays Association (NSCA) have made to the shotgun community by donating the software, hardware and administration necessary for these organizations to start and maintain their own forums for members.

“We appreciate the generosity of the Shotgun Life organization,” said Don Snyder, Executive Director of the NSSA-NSCA. “By working closely with Shotgun Life, we can help establish an online community for reliable and unbiased information about skeet, sporting clays and good sportsmanship among our members.”

The Shotgun Life forums include:

  • Shotguns – A general discussion
  • Vintage Shotguns – American, British and European
  • Clays Shooting
  • Upland Shooting
  • Ducking Shooting
  • Goose Shooting
  • Turkey Hunting
  • Gun Dogs
  • Conservation and Habitat
  • Women in the Shotgun Sports
  • Travel
  • Sporting Art
  • Politics

Advertisers interested in gaining a presence on the Shotgun Life forums should contact:

Jeff Thruston
Bernard + Associates
775-323-6828
jeff@This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Published in Press Releases
Media Contact: Sherry Kerr
Outdoor Media Resources
Phone number: 256-831-7877
Email address: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

NEW ONLINE FORUM ENGAGES MEMBERS OF THE NSSA/NSCA IN GLOBAL CONVERSATION ABOUT SKEET, SPORTING CLAYS AND GOOD SPORTSMANSHIP

 

After More Than Two Years Offline, the NSSA/NSCA Continue Their Forums as Part of a Cooperative Agreement with Shotgun Life

SAN ANTONIO, Tex. – June 16, 2009 – The joint organization of the National Skeet Shooting Association-National Sporting Clays Association (NSSA/NSCA) announced today new online forums for members with the goal of sharing accurate and unbiased information about their sports while stimulating camaraderie worldwide.

The new NSSA/NSCA forums arose from an agreement between the NSSA/NSCA and Shotgun Life (www.shotgunlife.com), the first online magazine dedicated to the best in wing and clays shooting. Under the arrangement, Shotgun Life has donated all the software, hardware and technical support to resume the organizations’ forums, which have been dormant for over two years, as part of the 10 shotgun forums launched today by the online magazine.

The forums are available by visiting www.shotgunlife.com and clicking on the Forum tab at the top of the page. NSSA/NSCA members should see specific instructions distributed by the organizations for registering in the Forums.

“With the next generation of shooters becoming much more active in skeet and sporting clays tournaments, it was time to once again bring a meaningful exchange of information to our members around the world,” said Don Snyder, Executive Director of the NSSA/NSCA. “Shotgun Life came to us with a generous proposal that helped us accelerate our goals of using the Internet to help unite our members in an online global community.”

“It’s an honor to be underwriting the NSSA/NSCA forums,” said Irwin Greenstein, Publisher of Shotgun Life. “As a free, online magazine our intent is to break down the barriers of entry to participating in the shotgun sports. Our support of the NSSA/NSCA forums is in complete alignment with the goals of these two tremendous organizations that have enriched the lives of so many shotgun owners.”

Members of the NSSA/NSCA will be able to access the forums at URL after they receive login information for their respective organizations. They can start participating in the forums immediately.

The National Skeet Shooting Association

Founded in 1928 and headquartered in San Antonio, Texas, the National Skeet Shooting Association is a not-for-profit organization owned and operated by its members. With nearly 17,000 members, it is the largest organization in the world dedicated solely to the sport of skeet shooting and sporting clays shooting. Membership is represented by a Board of Directors and an Executive Committee which employs an Executive Director to manage NSSA/NSCA affairs.

The NSSA is dedicated to the development of the sport at all levels of participation and vows to create an atmosphere of healthy competition and meaningful fellowship within its membership. Shooters who want to compete can enter fun shoots and skeet shooting tournaments. The NSSA also offers the hunter a recreational target shooting sport that will strengthen hunting and gun safety skills and extend "hunting" seasons.

You can access the NSSA’s web site at www.mynssa.com.

The National Sporting Clays Association

Founded in March of 1989 by the National Skeet Shooting Association headquartered in San Antonio, Texas, the National Sporting Clays Association is a not-for-profit organization owned and operated by its members. With more than 20,000 members, NSCA is America's official premier sporting clays association. Membership is represented by an Executive Council which employs a Director to manage NSCA affairs. An Advisory Council and State Delegates provide members with an additional source of input.

The NSCA is dedicated to the development of the sport at all levels of participation and vows to create an atmosphere of healthy competition and meaningful fellowship within its membership. Shooters who wish to compete can enter sporting clays tournaments and be competitive immediately. The NSCA also offers the hunter a recreational target shooting sport that will strengthen hunting and gun safety skills and extend "hunting" seasons.

You can access the NSCA’s web site at www.mynsca.com.

Shotgun Life

Launched in January 2009, Shotgun Life is the first online magazine dedicated to the best in wing and clays shooting. In addition to covering all the major clays sports and waterfowl and upland shooting, Shotgun Life showcases the finest shotguns in the world, women shooters and features extensive background information about the equipment and sports to help encourage new shooters to participate. Shotgun Life is available free of charge. Shotgun Life also distributes a free weekly e-letter with clays shooting tips from some of the best instructors in the world.

You can access Shotgun Life at www.shotgunlife.com.

Published in Press Releases
Tuesday, 09 June 2009 22:20

Nemacolin: The Crown Jewel of the Alleghanys

This is the final installment in our three-part series, The Triple Crown of Sporting Clays Resorts. In the first installment, Shotgun Life Editor, Deb McKown wrote about The Greenbrier. The second installment brought us to The Homestead. To wrap it up, Deb now writes about the Nemacolin Woodlands Resort.

Published in Destinations

For most people, The Homestead resort conjures up visions of golf, tennis, horseback riding and a romantic evening of four-star cuisine.

Published in Destinations

I will never forget the first time I saw one of my best friends take a shooting lesson...

Published in Elizabeth Lanier
Monday, 06 April 2009 07:40

The Triple Crown of Sporting Clays Resorts

Part 1: The Greenbrier

You know a road trip is going be great when, on the first leg of it, Johnny Cash comes on the radio and sings "Ghost Riders in the Sky."

Your SUV is packed with sporting clays guns, ammo and shooting gear and Cash's renegade ballad sends a shiver down your spine. You wonder, Does it really get any better than this?

For us, the answer would be a resounding yes.

Published in Destinations
Tuesday, 10 February 2009 07:04

My Afternoon With Olympian George Quigley


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My Afternoon With Olympian George Quigley

Written by Rick Robinson

Author, part-time fisherman and lousy shot

The picture which the folks at Shotgun Life have used to introduce me to you ought to tell you something.  All the people profiled in this fine publication are pictured holding their favorite shotguns.  My profile picture has me holding up a beautiful lake trout which I caught on the Niagara River cutting the border between New York and Canada.

What that has to do with clay shooting is what my story is all about.

Fishing (or at the least brackish lake water associated with it) is in my family's blood.  My dad had hunted when he was a young man, but by the time I was born he was afflicted with horrible arthritis.  So, instead of hunting, he taught me how to shore fish at a young age.  On my mom's side, I had an uncle for which fishing was his life.  Just to be able to fish on a daily basis, he spent his twilight living with a Seminole Indian tribe in the Everglades.

So, fishing is one of my sports of preference.  Although, the way I fish, calling it a sport is an insult to sportsmen everywhere.  I spend more time choosing my cigar for the day than I do choosing my lures.  Quite honestly, it's the quiet and solitude which I enjoy about fishing. Catching a fish is a side benefit.

One of my regular fishing companions, Lytle Thomas, mistook my love of fishing for being an all inclusive outdoor sportsman.  Lytle spends his weekends hunting things with and without a pulse.

"I'm running a charity sporting clays shoot next week at Elk Creek," Lytle said excitedly to me one day.  "I signed you up to shoot in my fivesome."

"I haven't shot since elementary school," I replied, hoping that would end the conversation.

"Yeah, I know," he persisted.  "You told me about it.  Remember?  You won a shotgun for breaking clay pigeons.  It's like riding a bike.  You'll be fine."

Lytle was only half right.  My bragging was catching up with me.  My dad had taken me to a youth shooter's safety clinic when I was a kid.  After a lecture from a local 4-H volunteer on safety (don't ever point a gun at anyone except your calculus teacher), everyone got a turn at the range.  Clays were going to be thrown out for us to shoot.  The prize for the most clays hit, winner take all, was the shotgun we were using.  I missed the first one and then hit all that were served up.  My dad was proud (although I do remember overhearing him explain to my mom that I had my eyes closed on each shot).

Dad had visions of some kid in my class with buckshot marks on his face from me trying to shoot rats along the river banks and convinced me to trade the shot gun to a neighbor for a baseball bat and glove or something.  Dad was a smart man.

"Anyway, it's a celebrity shoot," Lytle snapped me back to reality. "Our celebrity is George Quigley."

I gulped.  I knew just enough about clays to understand that George Quigley was an Olympic shooter.  But the thought of spending an afternoon with any athlete who is the best in his sport intrigued me.  I accepted the invitation.

"Great," Lytle exclaimed and told me the real reason for the invite.  "My boss is also in our group and he sucks.  I put you on my team so that he'll have someone to beat."

George Quigley is a legend around my community.  He is one of the best known ambassadors of shooting in the world.  He and his dad are both nationally ranked.  George, Jr. was on the United States Olympic Skeet team which finished 6th in the 1996 Games in Atlanta.  He won a gold medal at the 1994 World championships in Cairo.

On the day of the celebrity sporting clays event, I showed up at Elk Creek Hunt Club in Owen County, Kentucky - the home of this year's US Open.  Lytle had loaned me a 12 gauge Beretta 682 Gold E to use for the day.  In the parking lot he told me that it was bored and ported to reduce recoil and declared that I was going to use 1 ounce loads of number 8 shot rather than the standard 1 and 1/8th ounce loads.

I pursed my lips and nodded a knowledgeable nod.  I had no earthly idea what he was talking about. I took the gun anyway.

After a quick refresher on gun safety in the pro shop where we watched a Dick Cheney speech, I headed to the course.

I looked for Quigley, but didn't have to really search the crowd.  At 6'5" and around 250 lbs. he stood out.  And, he was the only guy at the practice range who was actually shooting.  Everyone else was just standing around watching him.  "Pull," he'd shout and two clays would fly out.  He'd shoot twice and both clays would explode.  "Dead Pair," he'd say as the crowd applauded.

I decided to wait to introduce myself.

I showed up at our first station. All the men in my group (including Lytle's boss) were dressed in gear appropriate for a shooting event - ammo vest, shirts with padded shoulders, and orange hats.  Suddenly my ensemble of a Bass Pro Shop baseball cap and "Fishermen do it With a Lure" tee-shirt didn't seem like such a good choice.  These guys were serious.

I retreated to what I normally do when I'm intimidated - I became a smartass.

"This clay pigeon thing sounds like fun," I said approaching the Olympian Quigley with my hand extended.  "I hear they are good eatin' when grilled."

Lytle shot me a WTF look.

Quigley just stared at me.  "Oh God, he's pissed," I though to myself.  "I've just insulted the king and his own sport.  This is not a good start to the day."

Then, Quigley smiled a rather sly grin.  "They're a lot more tender if you boil them first."

He was as nice of a guy as everyone had said.

I stepped onto the shooting platform, took my first two shots and missed both targets.

Quigley stood behind me shaking his head.  He gave a quick beginners lesson on how to balance my feet and gave me a better way to position my shotgun on my shoulder.

"And your eyes," he said.

"Yeah?" I responded.

"Try opening them."

What the hell?  It had worked the last time.

As I proceeded to each successive station, my shots inched closer and closer to a target.  Although I have to admit, I didn't particularly care if I ever hit a clay.   Learning to shoot was one thing.  Learning to shoot under the tutelage of George Quigley was quite another.  I was watching one of the best and from a very close range.

What was remarkable about George Quigley was the zen-like manner in which he zeroed in on his intended targets.  I make jokes about me shooting with my eyes closed, but George's approach to shooting was just that.  He didn't shoot with his eyes.  He shot with feeling.  He and the gun were one unit.  He didn't need his eyes.  He shot by pure instinct.

George Quigley hit 99 clays out of 100 on that hot summer day.  His only miss was a clay that was thrown from behind him.  I swear that the shot went past my head as a warning that I better start trying harder.  George said it didn't come anywhere near me.  Just to make sure, I started paying closer attention (and standing closer to Lytle).

I feared that George had visions that the president of the National Sporting Clays Association was waiting for him in the pro shop.  Being an ambassador of the sport is one thing.  But encouraging someone like me to enter the sport was enough for the Association to ban him from competition.

Whether a result of George's stellar lessons or pure dumb luck, with a few stations left, I suddenly got the hang of it.   He was right; you don't shoot with your eyes.  It's all feel.  Each time I hit a clay, Quigley would boldly declare "Dead Pair."

Suddenly with one station left, I found myself tied with Lytle's boss.  I had the distinct possibility of not being the worst shooter in the match.  Lytle glared at me.  His whole point of inviting me was to lose to his boss.   Quigley, knowing why I had been invited, winked at me.  I went 5 for 5.

Dead Pair!

Rick Robinson is an attorney with the law firm of Graydon Head & Ritchey, LLP in Northern Kentucky and the author of political thrillers.  His debut title, The Maximum Contribution, was named a Finalist for the Next Generation Indie Book of the Year for political fiction and earned an Honorable Mention at the Hollywood Book Festival.  The sequel, Sniper Bid, was released on Election Day and opened on Amazon's top seller list of political thrillers at #46.  He is published by Publisher Page, an imprint of Headline Books.  He can be reached via e-mail at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..



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Visit Amazon.com for Rick's novel, The Maximum Contribution.


quigley-03

Visit Amazon.com for Rick's novel, Sniper Bid.

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Shooting Tips, Gear & Shotguns



Sunday, 11 January 2009 08:25

You do what... ?

She's a teacher, an artist, and a ballet aficionado originally from Brooklyn, New York--and an avid clay shooter!

If this doesn't entirely add up, don't be surprised. Sometimes, even Bonnie Berniger herself wonders how she ended up becoming passionate about clays shooting.

"My friends can't understand how I can go from the arts to shooting," she says. "People from Brooklyn don't understand that shooting could be a sport. They associate a gun with crime. When I come into work happy after a weekend of shooting, they looked at me very strangely."

Published in Women Shooters
Monday, 15 December 2008 00:00

Take a Right on Reclamation Road

This installment is the fourth and final part of Deborah McKown's series on clays shooting in the San Francisco Bay Area. In part I, Deb reveals a little-known skeet field inside San Francisco city limits. Afterwards, Deb and friend Diane visit a nearby micro brewery with a stunning view of the Pacific Ocean.

Published in Destinations
Tagged under
Wednesday, 26 November 2008 12:42

Why I Shot Coyote Valley With a 28-Gauge

This article is the third part of Deborah McKown's four-part series on clays shooting in the San Francisco Bay area. Part I reveals a little-known skeet field inside city limits. Afterwards, Deb and friend Diane head to a nearby micro brewery with a stunning view of the Pacific Ocean. In Part II, Deb and Diane shoot skeet and trap at a place that resembles a covert terrorist camp. Afterwards, they visit an interesting mix of wineries in the "Other Napa Valley." Now here is Part III...

Published in Destinations
Saturday, 11 October 2008 11:39

The Corkells, Charlie & Chris

Corkell's

Chris Corkell leads the way into the gazebo of station six at Pintail Point. She's followed by her husband Charlie, instructor Wes Russum and their trapper, Kelly. The presentation is a report of outgoing crossers -- in a breeze coming off the Chesapeake Bay -- and Chris is up.

After Kelly pulls the lookers, Chris pauses to take in the shot. The landscape is flat with a trap house about 40 yards out, and beyond that a large dairy barn in the distance.

What she doesn't realize is the conspiracy that's developing behind her back. Charlie discretely took the three-button control from Kelly, and then he gets a sly, contagious grin.

Chris raises her Beretta 391 Teknys. It's a serious gun. Stock cut down to fit her small frame, hydraulic recoil pad, impressive wood, and an extended ported choke that looks like the muzzle on a Howitzer. She's in the moment -- focused.

"PULL."

Chris is suddenly baffled by the simo pair criss-crossing away from her. She whips around...and there's Charlie laughing -- along with everyone else. Chris gives Charlie that look (Oh that's so typical of you) and joins in the laughter.

Passionate About Sporting Clays

In a way, you begin to think its Charlie's way of getting even with her. After 27 years together, they took up sporting clays about 18 months ago. Now, all Chris wants to talk about is shooting....

Charlie is watching NASCAR and Chris wants to talk sporting clays. Charlie is watching football and Chris wants to talk sporting clays. And when Charlie is watching baseball, Chris wants to talk sporting clays.

You can tell who's taking the sporting clays lessons and who isn't. Not because Chris outshoots Charlie (they both shoot about 60 out of 100). It's simply that Chris has found a calling. She's on a mission. She wants to shoot competitively. And she'll do whatever it takes to become a championship shooter. She's willing to pay her dues.

"I've never been competitive at anything, until I got into shooting," she says. "But I fell in love with the sport, and I would like some day to be the Maryland State Champion."

Dig a little deeper and she's hard-pressed to explain precisely why she loves sporting clays so much. Maybe it is a means of relieving stress and being able to get outdoors as she has an office job at Talbot County Planning & Zoning/Board of Appeals. Maybe it's because sporting clays gives her and Charlie more time together. Or maybe it's because sporting clays is a heck of a lot of fun.

The Sporting Clays Habit

Whatever the reason, she's going with it. The couple is up to a monthly habit of numerous boxes of ammo per month. And Charlie is 100% supportive (despite the antics)

He proudly says that Chris is doing "real good" with her sporting clays. But for him, sporting clays is a different story.

Ever since he was old enough to pick up a shotgun, Charlie's been hunting in Caroline County, on Maryland's Eastern Shore. He still hunts birds and deer there. For Charlie, shooting has always been a way of life.

It All Started with a Remington 870 Pump

Ironically, Chris has never even owned a gun until that fateful day Charlie gave her a Remington 870 pump (in camo). The way it happened is that Charlie manages a 130-acre estate called Essex Farm, located in Royal Oak. Chris and Charlie grew up in Caroline County. One day, the owner purchased a manual trap machine to use on the property. To get Chris involved, Charlie gave her the Remington.

"The guys were hitting all the targets, and I wasn't," Chris recalled. "Right after that, I started taking lessons."

Her initial instructor was Bruce Ney -- a member of the National Sporting Clays Association U.S. team, former World Champion and in 2007 inducted into the NSCA Hall of Fame . As Chris tells it, when she showed up the first time with that Remington, Bruce took it away and let her use his Beretta shotgun.

Chris Crushes the Targets

Right after that, he fixed her and Charlie up with a pair of custom-fitted Beretta391

Teknys -- drawing on his experience as an authorized Beretta dealer, instructor and stock fitter.

Now, when she hits a target, she absolutely crushes it -- far exceeding anything she could've done on the sporting clays field with that Remington 870 pump.

Charlie, meanwhile, is more sanguine about the sport. While he really likes it, he found that sporting clays improved his hunting (there's plenty of excellent duck and geese shooting on the Eastern Shore.)

Sporting Clays Comes Full Circle

In the brief 18 months that Charlie and Chris have been shooting, sporting clays has come full circle in their lives...

They've become active members in the local chapter of Ducks Unlimited, and Chris is organizing her first sporting clays shoot at Schrader's Bridgetown Manor.

They've encouraged their daughter, Chastity and her husband, David to take up the sport, so that "We can shoot as a family," Chris said.

And after Bruce Ney hit the sporting clays circuit, Chris started taking lessons from Wes, the resident pro at Pintail Point. As it turns out, Charlie and Wes grew up together playing softball.

Today, you can see all three of them laughing and enjoying themselves as they move on to the next station.

Useful resources:

http://www.pintailpoint.com/sporting_clays_one.asp

http://www.schradershunting.com/

http://www.ducks.org/

http://www.berettausa.com/product/product_competition_guns_main.htm

http://www.bruceney.com/index.htm

Saturday, 30 August 2008 17:32

A Sporting Clays Paradise

Three-hundred targets, three sporting clays courses, 48 hours.

The eight of us piled into three cars to meet the challenge.

We left from Greater Baltimore on Friday morning. The group split up according to breakfast habits. Us four, not real big on lumberjack specials, decided to sleep the extra 30 minutes and grab a last-minute coffee at home.

Published in Destinations
Thursday, 28 August 2008 17:55

Wingshooting

Many shotgun aficionados will argue that clays shooting is merely a warm-up act for winghooting.

After all, shotguns are designed to shoot upland birds and waterfowl. And clays originated as practice sports to keep your eyes and reflexes sharp for the real thing.

Published in Wingshooting
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