The Ohio State University Pistol Club: A cause worth supporting
By Matthew Prachar and Steve Loos
You may not be aware of the existence of the OSU Pistol Club, but it has been around since the 1960's. The Pistol Club exists to help promote the shooting sports to students and faculty on the campus of Ohio State.
The club provides marksmanship and safety training via NRA certified instructors, firearm rental, ammunition, targets, and safety equipment to all who come to shoot. If they choose to participate, attendees are giving assistance in qualifying in the Bullseye Pistol and Handgun Marksmanship qualification programs offered by the National Rifle Association.
The club utilizes a newly remodeled 20 position on-campus firing range that remains OSU's little secret. This often goes unnoticed by many students. However recent in-house promotion changes have increased the attendance greatly. In the Spring Quarter 2009 the club had over 100 individual shooters come to take part in the experience.
The club is not funded in any way by The Ohio State University. It operates solely on the dues collected by members, which are $10 a week or $60 per quarter (nine weeks for the price of six).
Students would be hard pressed to shoot at private ranges for these prices. The fee includes everything the shooter needs. Anyone who has ever been a starving college student can attest this low cost is a big factor is being able to participate. As a result, many young first-time inexperienced shooters learn marksmanship skills and respect for our sport through the club's activities.
The club's firearms include different variants of the Ruger Mark II and the Smith and Wesson Model 41 22LR target pistols. Unfortunately due to the increased traffic and age of the firearms the quality and reliability of these pistols are decreasing rapidly. Most of the firearms are no newer than 15 years old and have had over 50,000 rounds of ammo run through them. While utilizing ultrasonic cleaners, the club still cannot keep up with the parts that are failing in all of the firearms. Typically three firearms a week malfunction and need some type of part replaced. This would be a great way to teach failure drills in a tactical course, but can be frustrating to new shooters looking to master the basics.
Needless to say the club has entered a vicious circle of spending money to keep these dated firearms functioning. With your help that could change.
Having researched purchasing new pistols, the club has found an excellent offer via Strum, Ruger Company to purchase Ruger Mark III's at a discounted price for $220 dollars per unit. The pistol club uses 20 firearms, and with all needing replaced very soon, there is need to raise $4,400 dollars to replace all of the firearms and ensure that this great opportunity to train Ohio State students in marksmanship will continue.
With the demonizing that guns receive in the halls of academia, the OSU pistol club is a sanctuary for those who understand the skill and respect that mastering the shooting sports can bring a young adult. Few other unique outlets offer Second Amendment advocates the ability to reach these young, responsible shooters. This is an investment in the future of our sport and our gun rights.
With your help, we can ensure the pistol club has a bright future at Ohio State. For more information on the club, please visit http://pistol.org.ohio-state.edu/
If you would like to donate funds or become a sponsor to the Ohio State University Pistol Club, please contact Matthew Prachar (club president) at [email protected] or at 614-499-1809.