Posted by: noadventure | October 11, 2011

Shooting in New Orleans(Gun Range!)

Editor’s note: we are so lucky to have the first NOadventure post from hugely popular New Orleans writer/blogger Andrea Morvant AKA: Pistolette. Be sure to check out her writing  and follow her twitter @Pistolette.

Ms Sig Sauer and I firing at the new FITS Indoor Shooting Range in Slidell, LA. This place is so clean I count my rounds so I can crawl around to find all the shells. Ok, not really, but this place is swank!

There are more people who shoot guns legally in New Orleans than illegally. You just can’t tell from the news headlines. If you’re not a gun enthusiast then “Shooting in New Orleans” probably makes you think of darting to your car when you leave a restaurant, avoiding empty streets, setting the security alarm, or making sure you have enough cash on you to get mugged. You don’t likely think of practicing a hobby, hunting for dinner, or simply learning a valuable life skill. And if not, then you certainly won’t associate it with reflective alone time or competitive camaraderie with friends.

This is unfortunate because some of the most ‘zen’ time I’ve ever had has been with a gun. Perhaps it’s that you need to be hyper-focused and hyper-aware when you’re handling a weapon, but it forces you to live in the present moment and “single-task”. No daydreaming, no juggling 30 things in a multi-tasking frenzy, no dwelling on the past or worrying about the future. It’s just one thing, and it’s just right now. And that is not something you experience often in modern life.

At Shooter’s Club in Harahan. This is a much older place, but what’s a shooting range without seventies wall paneling and a chain smoking manager? I love it here.

Shooting can also be a great time with friends. Going to the range to practice or compete with others is definitely a mood lifter (and stress reducer!). Some ranges hold competitions for members and they’re very social events with lots of geeky gear talk. If your range doesn’t hold events than you can easily put a group together via online forums like bayoushooter.com. People in shooting ranges are usually very polite and respectful (everyone is armed after all!). But I just love how calm and focused everyone is. The indoor ranges tend to have a very diverse group of shooters, whereas outdoor ranges tend to draw the more hardcore gun enthusiasts.

You also don’t have to shoot as a hobby, or even have an interest in guns, to consider it a valuable life skill. It’s a good idea to know how to handle a weapon even if you have no intention of using one. You wouldn’t go around hoping to use your concealed handgun permit any more than a CPR certification (but if you do, please keep your video game glory delusions away from real guns). Many of the local shooting ranges, as well as some private security companies in New Orleans, offer handgun lessons and concealed carry permit courses. The LA State Police website explains the rules for obtaining a concealed handgun permit. Read it before you hire an instructor.

Ms Glock and I mid-fire at FITS.

There are several options for shooting ranges in the New Orleans metro area, but none actually IN Orleans Parish (go figure). Most of the ranges are indoor facilities, which is better for climate control, but bad if you want to shoot anything bigger than a .45 handgun. Outdoor ranges don’t provide as many amenities as indoor ones, but since they don’t have to worry about you damaging their wee back-stops you can shoot a machine gun there. For instance, Honey Island Swamp will let you shoot up to a .50 BMG, and Tallow Creek says it only limits full metal jackets for some calibers. As you can see in this video below, folks definitely take advantage of it.

For now, I’m happy with the indoor scene, but you never know. I could be convinced to romp in the swamp with a machine gun.

Ms Sig and I, happy with our shooting for today.

INDOOR RANGES

Shooter’s Club. 2338 Hickory Ave. Harahan, LA. 70123. 504.737.7822.
Jefferson Gun. 501 David Drive. Metairie, LA 70003. 504.733.7695.
Gretna Gun. 230 Lafayette St. Gretna, LA. 70053. 504.361.5422.
FITS Indoor Range. 3191 Terrace Ave., Suite-A. Slidell, LA 70458. 985.639-3487.

OUTDOOR RANGES
Honey Island Swamp Shooting Range. Pearl River Wildlife Management Area, Slidell, LA.
Tallow Creek Shooting Grounds. 72306 Louisiana 1077, Covington, LA 70433. 985.893.1951.

Know of any other public shooting ranges we missed in the metro area (less than 1 hour drive of downtown New Orleans)? Tell us, and we’ll update this listing.

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Responses

  1. Another Outdoor range: Nick’s, Highway 61, Garyville LA

  2. I think it’s “Ms Sig and Me” (not I) – other than that, an enjoyable post!

  3. Disappointing that there are no indoor ranges in the downtown area. I’ll be there next week for a conference and hoped there would be an opportunity to go shoot with a group of attendees. Last year in Houston, there were three indoor ranges within walking distance of the hotel/convention center.

  4. The St Bernard Indoor Shooting Center is back opened. you guys should come by and check it out.

  5. There is a somewhat new range just about 15-20 mins further of a drive than Honey Island called M.C.T.A and another great indoor shooting range on the westbank called Bayou Dragon.


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