Shooting Sports USA - June 2020 - 24

FEATURE | EXCELLENCE

joined a local junior team, rifle teams focused
on supplying kids through their 20th birthdays
with the equipment and coaching needed to
start competing. My coaches encouraged me
to attend the Small Arms Firing School (SAFS)
at Camp Perry. Though that experience only
lasts a few days, hundreds of people come
for the program (first run in 1920) that teaches
civilians how to shoot. I participated in the
USMC Junior Clinic the year after, and in 2017
started shooting more of the National Matches.

PHOTOS BY DICK JONES

Dick: In the years I shot at Perry, from 1984
to 2000, almost everyone stayed on the base
in the World War II POW housing, which we
called the huts. Each hut had four beds, a door,
three windows, three electrical outlets, no air
conditioning and a single 60-watt light bulb.
In those early years, the latrines could be a
considerable walk with the same amenities
the prisoners over 40 years earlier enjoyed.

Since sighters are not allowed in EIC matches, keeping
a running data book was a major part in Dick Jones'
success. Every shot for each full season was recorded.

24

JUNE 2020 | SSUSA.ORG

Most of the time, we had hot water. The
majority of those huts are now gone, they
were simply too far gone to continue to use.
Serena: It was 2018 when I started to
understand the culture of the High Power
community and the tradition surrounding the
National Matches. Mostly junior teams stay on
base in the huts. Though they are structurally
similar to Mr. Jones' description, they have
been renovated to include air conditioning.
Though you may still hear complaints about
the occasional spider, they are nothing like
the horror stories I have heard of the "old
huts." I heard it was common for competitors
to set a bug bomb off and wait several hours
before re-entering. The bathrooms are only
a short walk, have hot water and are wellmaintained. Though the Nationals are a time
for people from across the country to reconnect, and hospitality abounds, housing
arrangements are generally location-centered.
For example, the Texas juniors having Texas
team dinners in the evenings. The Michigan
Embassy, erected at the end of the huts by
several Michiganders, both breaks and honors
this by inviting everyone to eat, laugh and
have fun. While it can be difficult to secure
base housing, the magic still persists on local
campsites and wherever else competitors
choose to stay off base.
Dick: The "Board" matches were run by
the National Board for the Promotion of
Rifle Practice, coordinated by the Director of
Civilian Marksmanship (DCM), which was run
by an Army Colonel who rotated out of the
position every two years. The DCM was highly
supportive of competitive shooting, supporting
the teams with travel expenses for half of the


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Shooting Sports USA - June 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Shooting Sports USA - June 2020

Contents
Shooting Sports USA - June 2020 - Cover1
Shooting Sports USA - June 2020 - 2
Shooting Sports USA - June 2020 - 3
Shooting Sports USA - June 2020 - Contents
Shooting Sports USA - June 2020 - 5
Shooting Sports USA - June 2020 - 6
Shooting Sports USA - June 2020 - 7
Shooting Sports USA - June 2020 - 8
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