Thursday, September 26, 2013

What it cost to attend a shoot?

First, shooting is expensive, period.  Even in the old days, shooting was expensive, period! 

Yes, many can remember $35 for a case of shells and on and on. You could also purchase a new car for under $4000 and many were more then happy if they were making $200 a week.  See where $200 a week gets you now days!

Attended a skeet shoot this past weekend and after reading a few postings on the cost of registered shooting (and the impact on attracting new shooters and keeping old ones). I sat down and figured out what it cost me to attend this one day shoot.

200 Registered Targets = $94   Did not play purse or options!

8 boxes of shells = $48

Gas = $13.69

Brought my own lunch.

Total: $155.69

You can reduce the cost of shells if you reload (good luck finding powder and primers), but those who don't reload can expect to pay $6 or more per box of shells. More if your shooting .410 or 28 gauge.

I don't have issues on what was charged, matter of fact paid $55 per 100 a few weeks back, but my choice to attend or not.  By the way, two shooters in the family, you do the math!

And, those figures are only for one day, 200 targets.  Two or three day shoot and you also have motel and meals to consider, as well as additional shoot fees and shells.

The conversation is about the cost of shooting registered and it's impact on attracting new shooters and keeping shooters!

I think a bigger impact then we realize....

If I was shooting practice, the $94 would allow me to shoot 26 rounds of skeet or trap. The figure is based on the low end on where I shoot, but I plugged in the lowest cost to shoot practice in my region.

A shooter raising a family and on a budget; does he (she) attend a one day registered shoot and shoot 200 targets or spread it out and shoot practice for six weeks (100 targets per visit)?

I think the decision has already been made by many, going by the number of shooters I see at various clubs shooting practice viruses the number I see at many registered shoots (skeet and trap) I attend each year. .

Saying that....

A few things a club could do to lower cost:

Look at is the price charged for registered targets. We sometimes forget a profit is already built into every target thrown at the cub, practice or not. Does the cost of that same target have to be raised because a shoot is being held?

Shoot fees.  Outside of ref fees and association fees, where is the additional money going? Do we need $15 or $20 returned to shooters?  You want to do it for the once a year big shoot, go for it, but is that really needed for every shoot?  I'm comfortable at $10.

Sell shells at cost during the shoot. 

Don't include the FREE meal in the cost of the shoot.

Get a sponsor!  Prizes (awards) cost money.  I've won car washes, tools, blankets, clothing, shells, lawn chairs and more in my years of shooting. 

Shooting is expensive, period, but maybe we can shave off a few dollars for those who are thinking of joining are ranks!


  1. Your math and points are all valid. Clubs that rely almost exclusively on volunteer labor year 'round can hold shoots at lower costs and they do a great service to the shooting sports. Like any other successful business, to sustain, improve and grow, however, they need to make a profit and/or have some other source of revenues. Many of the larger and most successful clubs have multiple related businesses, each generating profitable revenue. They represent good models to emulate. As a shooter (primarily FITASC which is more expensive to set up), I keep track of my shooting budget and expenses with an Excel spreadsheet. I look at the total picture (all travel related expenses -- food, lodging, gas/tolls -- plus event fees, shells, etc.) and the number of targets per event for each shoot. If the total cost per target shot is too high (over $3.00) or I've spent my budget, I usually don't go. But that is a personal decision. Club's can do little if anything about the total travel costs. Of course, just shooting locally would stretch my budget considerably but there are other trade-offs.

  2. I agree totally, I am looking at planning a trip to visit various clubs and shoot practice, instead of the $1.20 per target charged at competitions. First time this year there was room to shoot fitasc at the lobster held at addieville. It seems the clubs are contending with having to hire refs for the shoots, when during practice they hand you a card or a key. Is it the thought that people will cheat if there is no ref? I went to 3 major shoots this year but will be changing my shooting habits from here on. Good article Joseph!

  3. I am now speaking about Sporting Clays - clubs that sell targets to the public (not member rates) for $.45 each, charge $.70 each for a registered shoot. Why, because they can. They don't have trappers or referees to pay for, usually they throw in a lunch ($10 market value or so) and pay the NSCA and State Fees ($.05/target). So there is an additional $.10/target profit for a registered shoot vs simple targets. Again, they are in business and the old saying "Strike while the iron is hot" comes into play.