The year 2009 was a blur of activity for the First Shots team and all of the NSSF staff that contribute to First Shots’ success.
Writes Cyndi Dalena, NSSF’s manager of First Shots, “From new sponsors and ranges to new media outlets, First Shots flowed into 2010 in what seemed like the blink of an eye.
“Early in 2009, we embarked on a new challenge to increase the number of participating ranges, and we gained 54 new locations! Of course, more ranges offering First Shots means more folks learning about firearm safety and enjoying the shooting sports.
“Sponsors, always key to the success of our efforts, continued to be strong supporters. From loaner firearms to ammunition and targets, sponsors provided materials to each First Shots range to reduce out-of-pocket expenses and make sure the range had everything it needed for a successful seminar.
“Campaigns were conducted in Chicago and Los Angeles with much success. In each city, First Shots seminars were filled to capacity, and additional classes were added. The response in those areas certainly tells us that city dwellers want to learn more about firearm safety and shooting.
“Many of our NSSF member ranges continue to offer First Shots on a regular basis, and we appreciate each range’s commitment to firearm safety in its community and to the future of our industry. Industry sponsors have committed to continue support throughout this year — eliminating the cost of materials to ranges! Participating ranges will continue to receive ammunition, targets and safety literature at no cost. Loaner firearms — pistols, shotguns and traditional and modern sporting rifles — provide the tools for broad or specific First Shots.
“Throughout 2010, getting new locations onboard will continue to be a focused effort. If you haven’t scheduled First Shots yet, we are wondering why?”
Quick Facts from 2009 First Shots
• 128 ranges in 38 states participated
• Ranges held 259 seminars
• 160,500 rounds of ammunition were fired — 24,000 shotshells and 136,500 .22-caliber cartridges
• 16,770 paper and 51,030 clay targets were shot at
• 6,000-plus people were introduced to handguns, shotguns and rifles
Based on survey results, here are some statistics following-up on First Shots attendees in 2009:
• 2,400 individuals made 14,400 visits to shoot at local ranges
• 3,180 individuals met their state’s handgun requirements
• 1,020 individuals took a formal training class
• 600 individuals purchased range memberships
• 2,580 individuals purchased equipment, ammunition, targets and accessories
• 2,580 spent $1,518,588 at local ranges