Spur sights in gun training


Spur Outfitters will be holding firearms training classes for members of the public August 13-21 at the Silver Spur Ranch south of Saratoga.

The trainings are intended to foster gun safety, safe shooting habits and to give the public an opportunity to train for self-defense shooting, John Russo, one of the instructors leading the training sessions, said. The class will offer some shooters an opportunity to learn a new way of shooting that they may not be familiar with, Russo said, and it will ensure that people learn defensive training in a safe manner.

“What is different than what we see in California is that you have a community that grew up around firearms,” Russo, a police officer in California, said. “They’re no strangers to guns but they may be strangers to certain types of guns like a 9mm pistol.”

Russo said that the defensive pistol class has been one of the most popular over the last two years the training has been offered to the public.

The training sessions began several years ago when Russo, who also works as a writer for a gun magazine, visited the Spur Ranch where manufacturers often demonstrated new products to the trade press. He met Dave Sturm, an employee of the ranch, and soon he was coming back to train ranch employees in firearms.

Finally, Russo and Sturm decided to offer the courses to all comers.

Russo has been a police officer for the Escondido, Calif., Police Department for over 23 years, and has been a department firearms instructor for 20 years, he said. In his time with the police department, he has served as a patrol officer, detective and even a sniper on the Department’s SWAT team.

He will also be accompanied by nine other instructors who are all current or former police or military firearms trainers, he said. Having a large number of instructors available means that classes can be tailored to teach techniques that attendees would like to learn, Russo said. It also affords the instructors to break classes into groups or even individuals so instructors can assess a shooter’s skill level and train him or her to their level.

There will be five classes offered, and several sessions of each will be offered between the August 13 and August 21. Advanced defensive pistol is intended to teach novice and experienced shooters defensive skills. Tactical pistol is aimed at advanced shooters will teach techniques like engaging multiple targets and shooting while on the run. The youth .22 rifle course is intended to teach younger shooters how to safely handle a .22 rife. Long range rifle teaches long-distance shooting and the AR-15 rifle class introduces students to using that semiautomatic rifle.

Guns, ammo and safety gear will be provided to the students for the pistol and .22 rifle courses. For long distance shooting and the AR-15 course, students must bring their own rifles, ammunition and gear.

The cost for each session is $45 per person, according to a release from Spur Outfitters. Those wishing to attend should call Corina at Spur Outfitters at 307-327-6505 or email her at cdaley@spuroutfitters.com.


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