Another January has come and gone, and with it was once again the largest event of its kind in the world… The 2018 Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade Show was held at the Sands Expo and Convention Center from January 23rd through the 26th. Covering nearly 6 hectares (14.8 acres) of flooring, an excess of 2100 exhibitors displayed their products and services for some 60,000 attendees of the 4 day event. 2018 signified the 40th anniversary of the SHOT Show which started way back in 1979 with 290 exhibitors covering a comparatively miniscule 0.48 hectares (1.1 acres).
This year’s SHOT Show also marks the 20th time that SHOT has been hosted in Las Vegas, Nevada; and city that is larger than life seems to be a prefect fit for the SHOT Show. Last year saw nearly 3.2 million kg (3,500 tons) of exhibits moved onto the show floor. To put it mildly, the SHOT Show is unbelievably huge. However there is always a catch when it comes to the biggest and best; the SHOT Show is not open to the general public. That is correct, it is only open to members of the industry and trade. Manufacturers, wholesalers, importers, exporters, retailers, training, non-profit organization and media, all of which are involved in Shooting, Hunting, and Outdoors are able to apply to attend SHOT Show.
The SHOT Show is preceded by Industry Day at the Range on the Monday before the show. This day allows only exhibitor-invited media and buyers to come out to Boulder City Rifle & Pistol Club and experience first hand the products offered by over 160 companies. Everything from crossbows to handguns, throwing axes to fully automatic rifles and everything in-between. With over 1400 media and 800 buyers potentially being on site during this day, Industry Day continues to be the premier hunting and shooting event in the industry providing hands-on experience for attendees. The one caveat is the same as during SHOT Show itself, members of the public are not allowed.
This was the author’s 12th year of attending the SHOT Show and I was accompanied by some long time attendees who had an additional dozen or more shows under their belts. The SHOT Show is now less fun and exciting than it used to be, likely due to the more structured and business oriented planning now done by the author. However, attending the event has always left the author with a sense of awe at the sheer scale of firearms and accessories that are even out there. In perspective; Canada’s outdoor hunting, sporting market brings in roughly $6.5 billion in annual revenue. SHOT Show has that value of product and exhibits on display. Damned!
Now SHOT Show does bring in companies that have absolutely anything remotely to do with the firearms industry, and that includes law enforcement as well as other enterprises. However in a dozen years this had to be the first time the author noticed certain things that never had been at the show previously or escaped notice. With an excess of 1800 exhibitors, you will always miss something when attending, but some stuff is also new…
IF you thought that the Industry Day at the Range would be the favourite of the author’s annual pilgrimage to SHOT, you would be very close indeed. However, it is the now huge Canadian event that keeps the author coming back every year. The Canadian Shooting Sports Association (CSSA) once again stepped up and hosted the 5th Annual Canadian SHOT Show Reception, with the support of the Canadian Sporting Arms and Ammunition Association (CSAAA). This event has literally blossomed from a dozen people gathered in a hotel room, to a huge event that draws in Canadians from every aspect of the firearms community. Hosted at the Stratosphere Casino, Hotel & Tower, the event was held towering above the city of Las Vegas 108 stories in the air. The view was incomparable, the food was great but extremely short-lived, and the casual atmosphere allowed for the Canadian contingent of SHOT Show attendees to unwind a bit and relax and talk to other Canadians about anything including shop talk. This past event hosted in excess of 300 individuals that otherwise rarely, if ever, communicate to each other except through emails and phone calls. However this reception in its current state is only possible through the sponsorship of multiple firearms related businesses and individuals. TPF would like to personally thank each of these for their support and will list each and every one here.
Tactical Ordinance Inc.
Double Tap Sports
Holosun Technologies Inc.
Firearms Legal Defence
Korth Group Ltd.
Thanks to these sponsors for making the Canadian SHOT Show Reception possible and for being a part of the event. Here at TPF we will be sure to visit each of the sponsors and look at what they have to offer to our Canadian firearms community. We hope that you would do so as well.
As preparations have already begun for next year’s 41st SHOT Show, which will return to the Sands Expo on January 22-25, 2019; so to have the preparations for the 6th Annual Canadian SHOT Show Reception. Companies and potential attendees are asked to contact CSSA Director Mike Duynhoven.
As a FYI to readers who are not Canadian, or are not familiar with our listed organizations; the CSSA is similar to the USA’s National Rifle Association, only more polite eh? They are the organization that represents the firearms consumers across Canada with training, and political outreach; but only have two decades under their belt compared to the NRA’s 150. The CSAAA represents the Canadian firearms industry and looks after their interests, similar to the National Shooting Sports Foundation which organizes and runs the SHOT Show.
Here is a few images showing some of our Canadian companies that are exhibiting at SHOT Show! Make sure to visit ALL of them and help them all out.
There are currently over 30 Canadian companies that exhibit at SHOT Show with more and more doing so every following year. We at TPF will strive to get you a list and images of every single one of our Canadian exhibitors next year at SHOT Show 2019. Thank you for reading all the way through this small write-up of the 2018 SHOT Show. We will soon have more reviews and look forwards to future events for 2018.
Fun Fact: Canada, while only a tenth of the population of the USA, has a substantial number of legal firearms owners. For every 1000 firearms made in the USA, 95% of those remain in the USA for domestic sales, Canadian markets account for 80-90% of the those exported from the USA. That means out of every 500 firearms exported from US manufacturers, Canadian markets get 400-450 of those. This is the reason that most firearms manufactured have a slightly longer barrel to meet Canadian Restricted status instead of Prohibited, such as Ruger GP-100 is 108mm (4.2″) in length.
OK… The Canadian Shooting Sports Association actually moved it’s main office from Etobicoke to Oshawa on December 1st, 2017. Some may be asking why the office changed locations, and the reality is summed up by one simple answer. Cost of Operations.
Cost of operations is a no brainer. It costs significantly less to rent space and pay for utilities than in the previous location. We are not talking a couple percent, TPF was told it is in the order of 10% cheaper. The move into the new “digs” actually has the office presenting internally a much more professional atmosphere and can accommodate future growth of staff. The hardest part about the new office location? Finding the entrance…
The new office location is Unit 204 – 1143 Wentworth Street W., Oshawa, Ontario, L1J 8P7, Canada
While the actual address is on Wentworth Street West, the closest entrance to the second floor office is on the Boundary Road side of the building.
The toll free number has remained the same @ 1-888-873-4339, but the local office number has changed to 1-905-720-3142, and the FAX number has become 1-905-720-3497.
The author can almost hear you going “Huh? Why are you even mentioning this months after it moved?” To which we are glad you asked. On Saturday, February 4th, 2017 was the date when the CSSA’s Open House actually occurred to commemorate the change. The open house lasted from noon until 4:00pm in the afternoon and while not quite at the levels of the 2017 SHOT Show Reception, still garnered an estimated 90-100 individuals whom came by to wish the organization well and socialize with several CSSA personnel. Such as:
CSSA President, Mr. Steve Torino
CSSA Executive Director – Mr. Tony Bernardo
CSSA Legal Council – Mr. Edward Burlew
CSSA Office Staff, as well as several Board Members and Regional Directors
Also in attendance were a few notable locals from the region and nearby:
Oshawa’s Member of Parliament, Mr. Colin Carrie
Stoeger Canada‘s General Manager, Mr. Spyros Chrysochou
Firearms Outlet Canada, Mr. Fred Pellegrino
S&J Hardware, Simon Beeson
Spatha Tactical, Andrew Clarke
The Gun Blog, Nicholas Johnson
Plus a multitude of others I have missed. Which when you consider that the attendance at its peak was around 50-60 people in the office at one time is understandable. The gathering was chaotic, warm, and loads of fun! The event was amazingly well attended overall and was a very positive reinforcement that the CSSA has the support of many in the firearms community as well as the firearms industry. Kudos to the Canadian Shooting Sports Association for their past and current efforts and may there be success and even more positive initiatives that firearms owners can look forwards to in the future.
If you were at the open house and TPF missed listing you or you know someone who was missed, please feel free to send us an email on the contact page and we will add you and your website link.
P.S: I have heard that the CSSA’s AGM will be held on the weekend of April 22nd in Saskatoon, Regina. Hopefully we will see you there!
SHOT Show 2017, Day 2 Evening: Wednesday, January 18th
One of the highlights of SHOT Show for TPF-Online is the event hosted by the Canadian Shooting Sports Association (CSSA) and the Canadian Sporting Arms and Ammunition Association (CSAAA). Now for those of you who do not know of either organization, TPF will sum it up very simply.
The CSSA is the Canadian equivalent of the National Rifle Association (NRA) of the United States. Fighting for legal firearms ownership and usage for responsible Canadians. Represents the firearms owners of Canada.
The CSAAA is the Canadian equivalent of the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) of the United States. Fighting for legal production, distribution, and retail of firearms to the Canadian firearms community. Represents the firearms industry of Canada.
As always, the definitions are subjective as some may not agree with the workings and machinations of either, just like their US counterparts. TPF has been present in some sort of gathering for nearly every SHOT Show for the past eleven years of attending, and it wasn’t until a short few years ago that this event really began to flourish.
Emails were sent out roughly in late August/ early September of 2016 which included an invitation that stated:
The Canadian Shooting Sports Association (CSSA) and the Canadian Sporting Arms and Ammunition Association (CSAAA) are pleased to present the fourth annual Canadian Industry Reception at the 2017 SHOT Show from 6-10 p.m. on Wednesday, January 18, 2017 at Treasure Island Las Vegas.
As a member of the Canadian shooting sports industry, you are invited to participate in this special networking event by sponsoring, attending and inviting your industry guests. The event is designed to showcase the Canadian industry and to provide a social networking opportunity to our industry members.
The origins of this event have evolved from a small social gathering of individuals at timeshares and restaurants into it’s current iteration.
This event has become a great success from when it unofficially started five years ago when the CSSA’s informal Meet & Greet became a sponsored event with a $300 USD budget thanks to a couple select individuals. This gathering, which was to be last of the CSSA’s official Meet & Greets, had an end result of four Texas Mickeys, several cases of pop and water, plus eight extra large pizzas and just shy of twenty (20) representatives of the Canadian firearms industry in a single hotel room for an entire evening. From its humble origins back then in 2013, that marked the first formally organized event specifically for a Canadian attendees of the SHOT Show; this event continues to grow and flourish. This was proven with the 200+ attendees whom signed in at the event entrance, with all but a handful of those hailing from Canada. From a score of individuals to over ten times that in a few years, this event really has become a focal point of Canadian attendees at SHOT Show to interact with their Canadian business partners, associates, colleagues and friends that would otherwise only ever talk via the phone, email, and video-conferences. It becomes an event that these people could network, gain contacts, and just socialize and unwind from the stressful schedule of SHOT.
As the event has grown, so has the requirement for sponsors of the event. It is with many thanks that TPF lists the following sponsors and links to their respective sites, so please feel free to click the links, buy their products or products offered by them and help our industry become even better…
Platinum Level Sponsorship:
- Canadian Shooting Sports Association
- Canadian Sporting Arms and Ammunition Association
- Calgary Shooting Centre
- Korth Group
- North Sylva
Gold Level Sponsorship:
Silver Level Sponsorship:
Bronze Level Sponsorship:
Many thanks must be given to ALL attendees of the CSSA/CSAAA event with many new faces, it was a very good and positive event, and you can bet that there will be another for next year! If you have any questions or comments regarding the event and/or attending please email Mike Duynhoven of the CSSA, he wants feedback and to add Canadian Industry for next year’s event. If you do decide to purchase products from or through one of the event supporters, please reference TPF-Online if you care to help us out. Make sure that all of you enjoy the rest of 2017 and until the next installment, stay safe and have fun!
Some images of the 4th Annual Canadian SHOT Show Reception:
Once again many thanks to the Canadian Shooting Sports Association and the Canadian Small Arms and Ammunition Association for hosting this event! To give readers and idea of who was there, TPF was able to compile a partial list of Canadian industry registered attendees: (In no particular order, and definitely not complete)…
Air Gun Source, Calgary Shooting Centre, Calibre Magazine, Canada Ammo, CTC Supplies, Grand Power Canada, Gravel Agency, Gryphon Energetics, Korth Group, North Sylva, O’Dell Engineering, Practical Performance Products, Select Shooting Supplies, Shooter’s Choice, Tactical Capital Corp., Tactical Ordinance, Tiger Vac, Trade Ex Canada, Wholesale Sports, Wolverine Supplies, X-Metal Targets, X-Reload, The Gun Blog, Metak Distributing, WCDIA, Nordic Marksmen, S&J Hardware, CGN, McColl Sporting Goods, Aztech Armory, Colt Canada, Sebarms, Canadian Tire, Westside Stores 2012, Premier Shooting Center, Ontario Out of Doors Magazine, Prarie Nation Outdoors, European Arms Distributor, Eastern Outdoor Sales, Surplus Militaire Pont-Rouge, Prefiar, Amplis, Londero Sports, Drummond Shooting, The Evans Group, Al’s Corner Store, Pearl Street Media, Trigger Wholesale, Genesis Enterprise, Compass Safaris Marketing, Outdoor Group Media, CDN Gunworx, Blue Mountain Gunsmithing, Think Insure, Freedom Ventures, Transgressive Media, Outdoor Writers of Canada, Brigadeer Security, Lever Arms, Cadex Defence, True North Arms, National Firearms Association, Excalibur Crossbow, Bowman GunPar, Tetregon Dist., AJ Hobbs Ent., Wild West Shooting Centre, Kolder Canada, E&I Sports, Blackthorn Media, Savminter, Grech Outdoors, Kodiak Defence, HiCaliber Services, Scorpion Outdoors, Nanuk Plasticase, Buck Expert, PGW, Wanstalls
Warning: This is a LONG entry, with numerous images.
The week of January 16th once again saw the Sands Convention Centre in Las Vegas, Nevada; host the the 39th annual Sporting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade Show; also known as the SHOT Show. For those who do not know what SHOT Show is or what it consists of, TPF will give you a quote direct from the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) whom organizes the event.
The 39th Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade Show opened its doors this morning at the Sands Expo Center with industry expectations running high in response to the energized market in America for firearms, ammunition and accessories.
Over the next four days, the show will attract nearly 65,000 industry professionals from the firearms and outdoor industry, including 2,500 members of the outdoor press-the largest gathering of outdoor media in the world-and showcase new, innovative products used for target shooting, hunting, outdoor recreation and law enforcement purposes.
Owned and sponsored by the National Shooting Sports Foundation, the trade association for the firearms, ammunition, hunting and shooting sports industry, the SHOT Show is the largest trade show of its kind in the world. The show is open to trade members only and not to the public; consumers will see the products unveiled at the SHOT Show on retailers’ shelves during the course of the year.
You read that correctly, not open to members of the public. We at TPF can already hear our readers rolling their eyes and thinking to themselves, “But we are the consumers!” Which is true, except that the consumers that are mentioned the service companies and persons who are directly related to the industry. Not the end user, otherwise known as the public, but those whom supply the products to the end users such as retailers, trainers, ranges, organizations, etc… That being said, there are ways that the public can attend, and do attend as is evident to many who have attended SHOT know. TPF-Online will not go into details or methods for the public to get into SHOT Show. We apologize, and suggest that you utilize your favourite search engine or firearms forum (for Canadians, we recommend Gun Owners of Canada or Canadian Gun Nutz).
So let us delve into the timeline of SHOT Show.
TPF apologizes for the delay in posting this. We understand that this is nearly 2 months out of date, but wanted to keep the readers of TPF informed about what has been happening in Canada!
Another year has passed and the CSSA has weathered another year of RCMP shenanigans, political wrangling, and general herding of cats that is the firearms community. And they are doing it well.
The Canadian Shooting Sports Association’s Annual General Meeting and subsequent “Stick To Your Guns” dinner was held on May 30th, 2015 at the Ottawa Conference Centre. It started at 10:00am on Saturday, with several dozen attendees present for the association’s year in review. Notable individuals such as Daniel Fritter (Editor of Calibre Magazine), Chris Youngson (Owner of Canada Ammo), were present as the board outlined the past actions of the association as well as provided financials that showed the growth in membership and a healthy surplus. In fact according to the numbers, the CSSA is at its strongest levels ever both in memberships and in finances. Over 23,000 full members as of that morning. The addition of Mr. John Evers to the Board of Directors was another change that was well received. There were very few questions at the end of the AGM and people broke for lunch.
Of course being a grand CSSA event that was not the only draw that was present for CSSA members. The afternoon held a series of seminars for interested parties to attend. I was told that CSSA members were able to attend for free, and that non-members could attend for a $40 fee that enabled them to attend all three seminars.
- 1:00pm – 2:10pm – Dr. Gary Mauser
- World-renowned firearms researcher, Dr. Gary Mauser discussed the latest and greatest statistical trends in the firearms world
- 2:10pm – 3:20pm – Natural Resource Director-General Patrick O’Neill
- Natural Resource Director-General Patrick O’Neill shares his vast knowledge on the Explosives Act’s hand-loading and ammunition regulations
- 3:20pm – 4:30pm – TV Show Host, Keith Beasley
- CSSA Life Member, Keith Beasley of the hugely popular television show “Canada in the Rough” discusses public relations and the image of firearms owners
TPF feels that the seminars were a great addition to the afternoon time slot. With nearly three dozen people attending each of the seminars, the allocated room was well filled with bodies. There should be many thanks towards these three individuals whom gave their personal time and attention to present at these seminars in order to continue educating the firearms community. It was great to finally meet Dr. Gary Mauser in the flesh, and to once again talk to Mr. Patrick O’Neill and Mr. Keith Beasley.
Obviously the highlight of the day was the Stick to Your Guns (STYG) dinner. This STYG dinner was a truly important one as it was there to honour the CSSA’s Minister of Firearms, the Honourable Garry Breitkreuz, Member of Parliament for Yorkton-Melville, Saskatchewan. Mr. Breitkreuz has stated that he will no longer seek re-election and will be leaving federal political life after serving his constituents for over two decades. You read that correctly, he started sitting as an MP since October 25th, 1993. That will be a week shy of twenty two (22) years of being present in the House of Commons come the October 19, 2015 fixed election date. The standing ovation lasted for several minutes….
Roughly one hundred people attended the Ottawa STYG dinner and they included a slew of well known and respected individuals. Brian Lilley (The Rebel), the aforementioned Daniel Fritter, Chris Youngson, Dr. Gary Mauser, Keith Beasley, Brian Lovig (Daily Split), several MP’s and future possible MP’s, and several of the Office of Public Safety’s staffers. The main guest was Mr. Breitkreuz, which made a pre-recorded video by the Minister of Public Safety, the Honourable Mr. Stephen Blaney, who took the time to record a message for Garry Breitkreuz and of course plug C-42 a bit, one of the highlights of the event.
Many thanks should be given for the companies and individuals whom made all their various products available for the fund raising aspect of the STYG dinner.
SOG, CRKT, Gerber Gear, 5.11 Tactical, Shooting Chrony, Savage Arms, See All, Lyman, Target Knives, Shepherd Scopes, Canadian Access To Firearms, OTIS Technologies, GunZilla, Pullen’s Gunsmithing, O’Dell Engineering, and Bug-A-Salt
But in the end it the entire STYG dinner was a dedication to a champion in Federal politics. Thank you for decades of service in fighting for firearms owners across Canada Mr. Breitkreuz. You will be sorely missed in Ottawa!
OH. Did we mention the new duck gun that Mr. Breitkreuz got? He may have to wait until they come in ever so slightly closer….
Thank you for reading this small, and very late installation of TPF. We will have more to come!
It’s the most wonderful time of the year
With the kids jingle belling
And everyone telling you “Be of good cheer”
It’s the most wonderful time of the year
When Andy Williams sang “It’s the most wonderful time of the year” back in 1963, Christmas truly was the most wonderful time of the year. Everybody looked forwards to getting presents from “Santa” and opening up their gifts from the jolly ole fat man. Fast forward just over a half a century to 2015, and the most wonderful time of the year fell during the third week in January as the 37th annual Sporting Hunting Outdoor Trade Show once again graced Las Vegas, Nevada, with yet another larger than life event.
It started on Monday, January 19th, under a clear blue sky and temperatures that hovered around a chilly 16º C. Alright, it really is not that chilly to us Canadians, but for Las Vegas, it is wintertime. Thousands of media and buyers attended the tenth SHOT Show Media Day at the Boulder Rifle & Pistol Club (BRPC), located just on the outskirts of Boulder City, NV. Having been to several Media Day events from previous SHOT Shows, BRPC has continued to grow and expand as the annual number of exhibitors has also grown each and every year. Over one hundred and seventy exhibitors were there and catered to roughly a thousand invited media attendees and over five hundred invited buyers, dealers, distributors, and retailers for the day.
This year the Monday event was entitled SHOT Show Media and Industry Day and it is the chance to literally try out many firearms “hands-on” and experience directly existing products, new launching products, and prototype future products. A fair chunk of the items on display are not available to the Canadian civilian marketplace due to being categorized as prohibited devices. Compact handguns meant entirely for protecting one’s self, fully automatic or select fire sub-machine guns for law enforcement and military usage while not the norm, were available for ALL attendees to experience. In fact the roughly 1600 media and industry attendees discharged just over a half million rounds downrange from 9:00 am until 4:30 pm. Unsurprisingly contrary to the expectations of those whom are under the impression or belief that guns are inherently unsafe to use, let alone possess; not a single firearms related injury occurred and there were many satisfied smiles amongst the attendees.
However, after the Monday of live fire and big smiles comes Tuesday morning, when the SHOT Show officially begins, the work starts and the long trek ensues. With sixteen hundred and seventy eight (1678) exhibitors this year, that meant that if you were to be able to instantly transport yourself in front of every single booth and instantly launch into conversation with that exhibitor’s representative that you would have exactly 74 seconds of talking to that person. Consider that there are over 19km (~12 miles) of aisles to walk plus lunchtime plus waiting for a representative to talk to and that 74 seconds gets shaved down considerably. That puts it at say 60 seconds per booth with zero waiting and no travel that was not toward the next booth. If someone can ask about a new product and get the representatives to explain it in 60 seconds or less with all questions being answered, then TPF may have a job for you!
Now Canadians and Canadian Companies at the show are not new. TPF has routinely visited long time CSSA supporter Ms. Esteves for years at the Shooting Chrony Inc. booth at SHOT Show. Other Canadian manufacturing companies have been at SHOT for several years such as Toronto based Flash Fog Defense, and last year’s newcomer to the SHOT Show, Modular Driven Technologies. However there was something different about the 2015 SHOT in regards to Canadian companies being represented at the show.
Imagine TPF’s surprise when on every single cover of the thick SHOT Show exhibitor listing guidebook is a large sticker denoting VAULT Distribution and their booth location. Now while Vault Distribution was founded back in 2009; 2015 was its first as an official SHOT Show exhibitor. A Canadian company getting pretty much top exposure to every single attendee who grabs that book, and there were tens of thousands of attendees. Simply amazing! TPF stopped by Vault Distribution’s booth throughout the duration of the SHOW to talk a bit with Mr. Steve Ricker and Mr. Greg Zeitler. Like several other Canadian companies, Vault Distribution has attended SHOT Shows in the past seeking out product lines to deal in and thereby bring those products to the Canadian marketplace. For several years now Vault Distribution has been synonymous with firearms from Kel-Tec CNC Industries Inc., but they also deal with SIG Sauer firearms and Trace Optics to name a couple of other brand names. They will likely be bringing in more products and more brand names in the future, at least we at TPF-Online hope so. However, with how busy the Vault guys were, especially in the latter days of the SHOT Show, odds for Vault Distribution doing just that are better than average!
As has become tradition over the last several years, the CSSA has held various sized Canadian gatherings during the course of SHOT Show. In 2013 was the beginning of the truly sponsored gathering, with a few supporters tossing in a few hundred dollars for food and drink that year. Last year in 2014, the CSSA hosted the first officially sponsored Canadian gathering and it was a great success. In 2015, the gathering was altered slightly in two ways. The CSSA partnered up with the Canadian Sporting Arms and Ammunition Association (CSAAA), and the event was by “invite” only. Readers will notice that the word invite is in quotes. In 2014 there was a generic posting for the event across every imaginable cost effective medium available, and that included several online forums, and a ton of word of mouth. This time around there was a conscious decision to make the event more geared toward the Canadian industry that was attending the SHOT Show. Businesses were contacted via emails and phone calls and asked if they wished to attend, and were sent initiations via mail. However, even though invitations were distributed, anyone association with the industry was allowed access. It was surprising to see that the CSSA’s rivals, the NFA was allowed into the event as the author knows they did not get sent invitations. As the CSSA hosts stated to TPF, it is a Canadian industry gathering and all were welcome. Kudo’s to the CSSA for not playing the “Invite Only” card, very professional and courteous of them.
A special thanks has to go out to the sponsors of the event, it was easily as large as last year’s in attendance, but so many more industry attendees. Noted sponsors at the event were as follows.
Platinum Level Sponsorship:
Gold Level Sponsorship:
Silver Level Sponsorship
- Canada Ammo
- Calgary Shooting Centre
- Interammo Impex
- Marstar Canada
- The Right Edition
- Vault Distribution
Bronze Level Sponsorship
- Ballistic Bowstring
- Firearm Legal Defence
- O’Dell Engineering
- Select Shooting Supplies
- Trade Ex Canada
- Wolverine Supplies
Many thanks must be given to ALL attendees of the CSSA/CSAAA event, it was a very good and positive event, and you can bet that there will be another for next year! If you do decide to purchase products from or through one of the event supporters, please reference TPF-Online if you remember.
Alas like Christmas, the SHOT Show only comes around once per year… Which may or may not be a good thing. As stated in past installments, the SHOT Show is brain overload for new attendees, with over a billion dollars of product on display including prototypes, new releases, versions of older stuff, and regular line item products. If you ever get a chance and are able to get access, you should attend at least once to experience just how awesomely huge the industry is… Many thanks for reading here at Tactical, Practical and Fantastical.
Welcome to Las Vegas, Nevada. Home of the 2014 Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade Show; a.k.a. 2014 SHOT Show. This years show was held once again at the Sands Convention Center from January 14th to the 17th and would once again draw people from all over the world.
TPF Online arrived Saturday to an absolutely brisk 20°C with nary a cloud in the skies. This type of weather would continue for the entire duration of TPF-Online’s presence in Sin City.
Fast forward to Monday morning at Media Day, where TPF Online was on site and shooting suppressed .308 AR platforms by 8:05 in the morning, Kriss Super-V fully automatic suppressed SMG’s around lunchtime and followed in the afternoon by shooting trap with KSG’s and Beretta tactical shotguns… TPF also got to play once again with the IWI Tavor akin to the one being raffled off by Gun Owners of Canada; sign up and you can win!
After the extreme joy of Media Day, the next four days are purely SHOT Show and many kilometres of aisles. Over 1600 exhibitors were present and displaying their wares and sales staff across 5.3 hectares (13 acres) of floor space and divided by 20.1 Km (12.5 miles) of aisles. As a tidbit of information, note that the SHOT Show is the 16th largest trade show in North America, and attracts exhibitors and attendees from every US state and over 100 countries. Canada’s hunting, shooting, and outdoor trade industry is valued at roughly one billion dollars annually, and at the SHOT Show the value of the products on the show floor is equal to that. Most people do not realize that Canada is a huge marketplace for firearms, especially for manufacturers from the USA. For every 1,000 guns that are manufactured in the USA, approximately 96% are for domestic usage; sold via retail in the USA. That leaves roughly 40 guns that are exported per 1,000 produced, and Canada imports 35-37 of those. So in 2010 there were 5.5 million firearms manufactured in the USA, which roughly translates into roughly 150,000 US manufactured firearms imported into Canada annually. When you add in all the remaining imports of firearms from other countries, plus the few remaining Canadian manufacturers, it becomes apparent that the Canadian firearms industry is alive and well.
The Canadian Shooting Sports Association decided to host an event during the SHOT Show as most of the industry would be in Las Vegas that week to renew contracts and create new ones regarding firearms, ammunition, accessories and all things similarly related. TPF was present and from discussions with attendees and CSSA representatives, the event was beyond expectations. Hosted at the Flamingo Hotel in Las Vegas, the event was originally to be held in the Reno Room, but was shifted at the last moment to the Laughlin Room. There were representatives that reached across the gambit of the Canadian firearms industry. Manufacturers, Distributors, Retailers, and Media were present for the event which had 150 or more attendees at its peak. Both Gun Owners Of Canada and CanadianGunNutz, the two largest Canadian firearms web forums were there as was Calibre Magazine, the only firearm magazine published in Canada. Other media celebrities were there as well such as Scott Funk of YouTube famous Funker Tactical, and Brian Lovig of the Daily Split, among others. There was some nicely present food trays of meats, vegetables and fruits, and the CSSA was fairly liberal in giving out drink tickets that evening. Unfortunately a couple of people left a bit early, but most attendees were present for the 9pm prize draws. Given away at the draws were several shirts, a bottle of Champaign, a heavy-duty backpack, and the grand prize, a Bug-A-Salt. This event had come a long way from the informal resort/hotel room get together with a score of individuals. So many thanks should be given to the CSSA for their initiative in hosting such an event, to the sponsors for making the event possible, and for all the attendees who made this first Canadian Industry SHOT Show reception as smashing success.
The Sponsors of the event were the following:
- Canadian Shooting Sports Association (CSSA)
- Browning Canada
- Calibre Magazine
- Canada Ammo
- Marstar Canada
- O’Dell Engineering
- PGW Defence Technologies
- R. Nicholls (F.N. Sports)
- Select Shooting Supplies
- T.E.C. Trade Ex Canada
- Trigger Wholesale
- Canadian Sporting Arms and Ammunition Association (CSAAA)
Obviously many thanks should be given to the sponsors of the event so please feel free to click the links, buy their products or products offered by them and help our industry become even better. To those in the industry, TPF recommends you join the CSAAA if you have not already. Why? As the CSSA is roughly the Canadian equivalent to the American NRA, the CSAAA is the Canadian equivalent to the NSSF in America.
Enough about the single greatest Canadian event at SHOT, let s get back to the SHOT Show itself! If you happened to be around and observant enough at the right times and locations, attendees of the 2014 SHOT Show could have seen all sorts of celebrities either at an exhibitor’s booth, or wandering around the show itself. As always nearly every top competitive shooter in the USA is there, nearly every hunting/outdoor channel personality, plus all sorts of celebrities including the following:
- Acting: R. Lee Ermey, Steven Segal, Les Stroud, Joe Montegna
- Racing: Bobby Labonte
- Military: Kyle Lamb, Robert Brown, Chris Costa, Larry Vickers
- Online: Colion Noir, FPS Russia, Hickok45, GunBlast, Funker Tactical
- Other: Jeff Foxworthy, Ted Nugent, Craig Morgan, Governor Rick Perry
The lists of people of greater than average fame, whom are present at SHOT Show are in the several scores of numbers. The number of attendees increased by 5,000 above last year’s total, to an excess of 67,000 attendees. As always there are literally hundreds and hundreds of new product launches at the show as well as celebrity endorsements for them. Whether the items are existing, revised, revamped, resurrected or truly new, the SHOT Show is where dealers will see it for their respective customers. TPF Online is lucky in that this was the eighth (8th) SHOW Show that was attended, and not a year goes by that something new is not learned or brought back to Canada. Hopefully you will be able to attend a SHOT Show in the future if you have not already.
SHOT Show 2015 is once again held in Las Vegas, Nevada. At the Sands Convention Centre once again from January 20th-23rd, 2015. We at TPF are looking forwards to it and the next CSSA Canadian Industry Gathering.
January 15-18, 2013. These were the days that the 2013 Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade Show (SHOT Show) was held in Las Vegas, Nevada, at the Sands Expo and Convention Center. With this being the 35th anniversary of the event, one would have expected the event to be a little more upbeat and celebratory in nature. However with the looming issues of multiple executive orders by President Obama and the idiotic “gun control” laws being tabled by the State of New York, the mood was slightly more somber at the largest trade show of its kind in the world.
That was not to say that the manufacturers, distributors, and retailers whom attended as exhibitors and consumers were not busy hammering our deals and displaying new products for 2013… If anything the business side of the industry has been at its highest levels in years with order delivery dates being a year for some instead of a couple of months due to commercial demand. In the few days following the Sandy Hill tragedy, consumer fears resulted in unheard of demand for products, such as Brownell’s selling of 36 months of typical inventory of P-Mags in under 72 hours. Three years of standard sales compressed into under 3 days. Firearms are in such high demand that orders prior to the SHOT Show had already exceeded 800,000 units above currently produced items. That was a SINGLE firearms manufacturer who has orders for over three-quarters of a million firearms and the trade show had not even started yet. From a business perspective 2012 and 2013 are banner years for the industry due to worry about bans and confiscations by the current government administration.
Enough depressing thoughts however. With over 62,000 attendees, plus exhibitors, the 2013 SHOT Show had a record level of attendance. Over 2,000 media representatives scoured the 5.85 hectares (630,000 square feet) of booth space and got the news on what products are new, and what products are hot from over 1,600 exhibiting companies. With over 1,600 companies and the officially open time of the show being a total of 34.5 hours; it equates to only 77 seconds of visiting time per booth. Now that does not seem that bad, except it does not include the 28km (17.4 miles) of aisles of walking between exhibitor booths. So in reality attendees who want to travel the entire show spend roughly 5.5 hours walking the show which drops that down to roughly a minute per booth. Go search on YouTube or google and you will see that most stops are several minutes long. So IF you are going to SHOT Shows in the future, please remember a couple of things.
- Plan out who you need to see versus want to see
- Bring a very comfortable pair of shoes (or two)
- For those who are looking to sign purchase agreements – Bring a cheque-book and a pen
- For Media who have to lug around their equipment? One word – Cardio
- Have fun
Now amidst the hustle and bustle of the SHOT Show there are attendees from all over the world. In fact over 100 countries have people at SHOT Show in various capacities, and Canada is no exception. Similarly to the past half-dozen or more years, the author was there representing the Canadian Shooting Sports Association (CSSA) and as well, TPF in a more recent capacity. One of the evening events that became an informal tradition was a CSSA/Canadian Meet and Greet during the show. While last years was not held due to a lack of foresight, this year was special. With the help of a couple Canadian supporters, the event was a fully fledged social gathering.
Special thanks to the following organizations and companies:
- The Canadian Shooting Sports Association: For encouraging TPF to exist and continue this fine tradition of holding a SHOT Show gathering for Canadians who attend.
- O’Dell Engineering, Trigger Wholesale, and the Korth Group: These three companies made it possible to bring in the food and drink to keep the attendees from having parched throats and empty bellies. It was their support that made the event such a great success.
With the President of the CSSA and the executive director of CILA present as well as a multitude of individuals the evening lasted from 7:00pm until just before midnight, the gathering was well attended and a good time was had by all. Discussions ranged from the current state of Canadian and US affairs regarding firearms to the top Canadian firearms that people should own. Newly found Calibre Magazine was there with several copies of their first publication, which was well received by all attendees.
Nearly twenty people partook of the gathering and while slightly more manoeuvering room would have been appreciated, it was a very enjoyable time and deemed a success, especially due to the last-minute preparations. As the first such event hosted by the CSSA at SHOT Show that was sponsored by members of the Canadian shooting industry, talks are already in the works for expanding and improving the venue for the next year’s SHOT Show. On behalf of the CSSA and it’s members, TPF-Online would like to thank O’Dell Engineering, Trigger Wholesale, and the Korth Group for their contributions, a damned good time, and we look forwards to next year. Please be sure to visit these wonderful companies and find out who their dealers are in your area and have a look!
Also many thanks to Mr. Ly @ Transgressive Media for his images of the event.
Combat pistol shooting has been around since the early 1900’s as military forces and law enforcement began to use handguns as a means of defense. Even back nearly 50 years ago, combat shooting was practiced by law enforcement as a means of training law enforcement officers (LEOs) to be able to effectively and accurately use their service pistols in a variety of shooting positions. A six shot revolver chambered in .38 Special was the standard staple of these LEOs so accuracy was an extremely important skill to have with their limited ammunition capacities. Remember that while a 1911 was designed over a century ago, most semi automatics were very expensive compared to the revolvers even just a few decades prior to today. This version of Combat Shooting has survived today as Police Pistol Combat (PPC) and is seen as the for-runner to current dynamic action shooting disciplines. It wasn’t until the late 1960’s and early 1970’s that the true combat shooting was starting to take shape in today’s version which incorporates drilling the concepts of threat identification and tactical awareness as well as accuracy while under stress. For readers who are in the younger generations, TPF recommends you go and look for the movie Magnum Force (1973), starring Clint Eastwood, and you will see a small snippet of the fore-runners of today’s action shooting with the “Combat Shooting Championships” in the . Please remember that movie is nearly 40 years in age and at the time action shooting sports had not been truly established. While PPC was, and is still today, practiced both a discipline and sport, it was the foundation for what developed into the modern action shooting sport, such as International Practical Shooting Confederation which was officially formed in 1976.
As the concept of getting into action shooting sports has already been addressed in Part 1 and Part 2 of this series, this installment is to those individuals have already tried their hand at the fun filled world of action shooting. As TPF has inferred in the aforementioned posts, the majority of the experienced people who participate in action shooting are extremely friendly and open. Now some of these people now train others and use their vast amounts of experience and knowledge and years of refined skills to help jump start newcomers into shooting, and to enhance skills of those familiar to the sport. TPF, on behalf of the CSSA was able to interact with many of the shooters in the previous installments and get a quick tip from them. Please recall that many of these people make a living from training people how to become a better shooter and as such will only give small snippets of advice outside of a training session. TPF is honoured by the following individuals for their time and efforts at promoting the shooting sports and for their willingness to assist new shooters in some tips which they have found helpful in being a superior competitive shooter.
A huge supporter of IPSC and the owner of Freedom Ventures in Canada, Mr. Sean Hansen graciously gives TPF readers a quick tip on improving your shooting ability.
STI International sponsored competitive shooter, Mr. Blake Miguez is very open and a great individual whom was very forthcoming when asked to share his insight of how to improve one’s shooting prowess in action shooting. Mr. Miguez’s Facebook site here.
Michael Voigt is one of the true veterans of the shooting sports with many years of experience and skill under his belt. You will not how much he enjoys discussing the sport he has loved for many, many, years of dedication. Mr. Voigt’s website here.
Rob Leatham is to Action Shooting what Wayne Gretzky is to Hockey. Considered by many to be the overall grand master of knowledge and techniques from years upon years of being one of the best in the world in action shooting. Mr. Leatham’s website can be found here.
Angus Hobdell has been shooting CZ handguns for so long that the two are nearly interchangeable when talking about one or the other. A great great love for the shooting sports and a very friendly nature to all, means that Angus has no issues in letting TPF readers in on one of the small secrets for a successful shoot. Visit Angus Hobdell.s wesite here.
With a good sense of humour and a great demeanor, Ms. Tierani Hendrix is a credit to the shooting sports with her outgoing personality. While at the 2012 SHOT Show, she spared a small amount of time to give new action shooters a tip for improving. Her website can be found here.
Ms. Randi Rogers is pure gold in her enthusiasm for shooting sports and has an amazing level of skill and energy which she is always more than happy to share with new shooters. TPF was able to “co-erce” Ms. Rogers into offering a helpful hint just by asking her. Find Randi Rogers’ website here.
Para-USA Shooter, Travis Tomasie was yet another professional shooter who is happy to help out prospective shooters aquire higher skill sets and compete in action shooting sports. Travis’ website can be found here.
TPF would like to thank all the professional shooters who were willing to spend a moment of their time to assist TPF in these videos. Unfortunately these videos were all done in a limited time frame and due to these time constraints only a few were approached. If readers have any specific shooters, or questions to have asked of these shooters, please ensure that you write us with your suggestions here!
Regardless if it is Tactical, Practical, or Fantastical; the popularity of action shooting sports is on the rise. Thanks for reading!
Since its inception back in 1999, the Canadian Shooting Sports Association has held a fundraising dinner which has since become known as a “Stick to your Guns” dinner. Originally an annual event, this dinner has been expanded to be held several times a year in various locations across Canada. These dinners have had such notable speakers like Sandra Froman (former NRA President, 2005-2007), and long time supporter and a true friend to Canadian firearms owners, MP Garry Breitkreuz. In recent years a specific annual version has become linked with the CSSA’s Annual General Meeting, and this one was held on April 28th in Gatineau, Quebec.
The last time the author was in the region, the city of Hull had not been amalgamated into Gatineau and the author had barely begun to become involved with firearms. It seems so long ago, but the city and region hold many worthwhile attractions for visitors. So if you get a chance, please ensure that you visit one of the many museums in the area. Now, as this was to be the first of the CSSA AGM’s held in the province of Quebec, there was some anxious times for organizers leading up to the event as turnout was an unknown factor, but all the their worries were for naught. Nearly ninety (90) individuals braved the somewhat chilly weather to attend the CSSA AGM, of which roughly half were from the province of Quebec. With many questions asked by individuals in attendance and a great wealth of information about the efforts of the CSSA, the AGM was alive and resulted in a large volume of information disseminated to those in attendance. As always the CSSA is humbled by the sheer volume of support from its membership, and hopes to be able to do even more in the coming months and years both domestically and abroad.
With the AGM wrapping up just after noon on the Saturday, the CSSA had decided to arrange a tour of parliament for the late afternoon prior to the fundraising dinner and this was available for attendees of the AGM. TPF was unable to attend the tour, but had heard that the tour was phenomenal with people being right on the House of Commons floor and sitting in both the seats of the Honorable Andrew Scheer, Speaker of the House as well as the Right Honourable Stephen Harper, Prime Minister of Canada. The entire structure of the parliament building is a monument to history and grand construction of generations gone by. With exquisite stonework and inlaid patterning, it is amazing how well made the building is when one considers that the wiring and plumbing is nearly completely hidden from casual sight as you walk through out the building.
At 6:00pm the “Stick to your Guns” dinner officially opened and began the festive evening, with it being the first CSSA fundraising dinner since the historic April 5th, 2012. This was officially coined as the 1st Annual Dead Registry Celebration, as it occurred mere weeks after the historic passing of Bill C-19. Even with some last-minute scrambling for setting up the prize tables, the evening proceeded with very little snags and errors. With Tony Bernardo being the Master of Ceremonies and Mr. Brian Lovig of the Daily Split being a co-host, the evening was anything but dull. Not one, but TWO speakers were in attendance that evening with Mr. Garry Breitkreuz being the initial speaker and telling about the trials and efforts that have been endured and overcome by the CSSA and those who believe in firearms freedom. The keynote speaker was mister Phil Morlock, one of North America’s leading experts in promoting heritage outdoors activities that include hunting, sport shooting, fishing and trapping. The praise which came from the mouths of these two individuals was humbling to the CSSA but also invigorated those in attendance to continue to stand up and fight for the Canadian firearms community.
With good food and nearly one hundred attendees, the dinner started off on a great note and the sheer number of prizes were astounding. There were many spectacular prizes available and the top ones were two of the four rifles available that evening. To quote the host’s repeated mantra, “Did we mention that these rifles were UNREGISTERED?” Many thanks to those who won the Chaparral Winchester Model 1866, the Carl Gustav 63 target rifle, and the plethora of prizes that were available. Many thanks must also go to Mr. Brian Lovig for his professional assistance in auctioning off some prizes, such as the Model 1866, to the attendees. Some of the raffle draws were very well received and quite innovative such as the Joker Draw which was a beautiful stainless Ruger 10-22 rifle with laminated wood stock. The catch? There were only 12 tickets available so it was a 1 in 12 chance to win. Just amazing and so well received by the audience.
A special thanks to the following for their support and help in what was a truly extraordinary evening. These companies and individuals are part of Team CSSA and contribute to the success of the organization to keep the fight in the face of the gun grabbers and ensuring what is accomplished is lasting and stays beneficial for Canadians.
- John St. Amour, Marstar Canada
- John Mock, Stoeger Canada
- Bob Nichols, R. Nichols
- Daniel Legault, Browning Canada
- Anthony Toryni, Trade Ex Canada
- Ken McRory, Vortex Optics Canada
- Brandon Bulter, Battenfeld Technologies (Caldwell/Tipton)
- Ben Krete, The Gun Centre
- Mandy Esteves, Shooting Chrony Inc
- Dave Landsborough, Triggers and Bows
- Lee Morgan, Gunzilla Canada
- Tony Bernardo, Canadian Institute for Legislative Action
- Brian Lovig, The Daily Split
- Garry Breitkreuz, CPC Member of Parliament for Yorkton-Melville
- Hornady, Kershaw, Forster, Lyman, and several more companies
- Luc Thivierge, Chris Youngson, Norm Lapierre, and so many more individuals
After all the food had been eaten and all the prizes had been doled out to winning attendees, the evening was far from finished. The CSSA went the extra step and provided a live band for the remainder of the night. “Reloaded” was a garage band made up of some veteran and professional talent from the ranks of the CSSA itself. Armed with his Gretsch guitar, Tony Bernardo lead the group with professionalism, Rob Alexander invoked his keyboard with practiced skill, Brant Scott wailed with purpose on drums and Dave Weston put up the backbone bass with fingers flying. With the occasionally addition vocals provided by Tony’s daughter, Kira; the night was filled with electricity and was possibly the finishing stroke in completing a picture perfect day of energy and enthusiasm.
Many thanks to all who helped make the entire day a memorable one and hopefully TPF will see you again next year at yet another CSSA AGM, if not sooner at more of these fund-raising dinners.
Getting into Action Shooting – Part 2! – On behalf of TPF-Online and the CSSA! Part 1 can be found here!
Continuing the theme of how to get people into action shooting, or at least experience shooting sports in general, TPF-Online once again brings various video snippets from the ranks of the extremely knowledgeable and experienced names in action shooting. Once again however, TPF cautions that many of these interviews come from a American point of view, which is somewhat different due to the prevalence of shooting sports in the United States when compared to Canada. Thanks to the efforts of organizations like the Canadian Shooting Sports Association, podcasts like that of Canadian Reload Radio, and people who want to help grow the sport and educate the unknowing to the fun and sport of shooting.
First up is Tierani Hendrix, a wonderful person who has been shooting since 2008, only a scant 4 years; and whose skills have earned her a spot on Team Smith & Wesson along side of legendary competitive shooters like Jerry Miculek. Ms. Hendrix is consistently one of the top women shooters in the realm of IDPA, and TPF was able to snag a few moments with Ms. Hendrix while she was attending Safariland, one of her sponsors. Even with a quick sponsor plug, she tells you what who can do regarding entering into the shooting sports.
One of the legends of experience and techniques, Michael Voigt, took a small bit of time out of a hectic SHOT Show schedule to spend a bit of time with TPF and discuss with Professionally shooting since 1979, Michael Voigt has over 20 years of experience and developed techniques under his belt. Since 2001, Michael Voigt has competed with Jerry Miculek for the tops spots as Nation champion for USPSA’s 3-Gun Open division, proving that skill and experience is still a driving force in these action shooting events. Many thanks to a great gentleman and sportsmen for sharing his thoughts to the readers of TPF Online.
From the age of 11 Randi Rogers has been shooting, and shooting, and shooting. Even though her first true exposure was to Cowboy Action Shooting due to her upbringing, she has embraced almost every style and type of action shooting. A true champion who has been national champion in SASS, IDPA, IPSC, USPSA, and several other disciplines; TPF Online was pleased to be able to have Ms. Rogers give a small bit of insight into getting into action shooting. At the time of the SHOT Show when this video was taken, Randi Rogers was an employee and member of Team Glock, but has since transferred her business acumen and shooting talents to Comp-Tac.
A relative newcomer to Team Para-USA, Travis Tomasie is no stranger to guns having served in the military and being a member of the US Army Marksman Unit Shooting Team for eight years prior to joining Para-USA in 2011. Never heard of him? TPF will bet you have seen of him is you have ever looked up action shooting on Youtube. Search for the fastest reload and you’ll see Mr. Tomasie in action. Mr. Tomasie honoured TPF-Online by taking some time out of his schedule at the 2012 SHOT Show and giving his take on how to get into action shooting.
She has spent over 80% of her life shooting, and no, she is not very old at all. Tori Nonaka, shooting since she was three years old, and currently a member of Team Glock shares her ideas of how to get into action shooting. Her youth and drive are evident as Ms. Nonaka graces TPF with a few moments of her time at the 2012 SHOT Show. Many thanks to Ms. Nonaka for giving your opinion and showing TPF readers how much you love shooting!
Another veteran to shooting, Doug Koenig began his shooting career back in 1987, and is classed as one of the best all round shooters in the world. In 1999, at the age of 20, Doug Koenig was the first ever person to shoot a perfect score at the Bianchi Cup. He is a great competitor and has a wealth of experience and skills which people can learn from. Here Doug Koenig shares a moment with TPF-Online to describe how to find and get involved in action shooting sports.
Talking to these individuals is a great pleasure for reasons mentioned previously. Such individuals are thankfully not rare in the action shooting sports, and by that TPF-Online is heartened by the open and welcoming attitudes which many, if not all, of these top competitors have.
TPF hopes you the reader, and viewer in this case, hold your judgement until you see some more future shooting personalities in later installments, but as always; action shooting. Is it Tactical, Practical, or Fantastical?
How many readers can remember “March Break” as a time when one was glad to be out of the classroom for a week and enjoy what was supposedly the end of winter. It has been a long time for the author since school work and study dominated his daily routine, but “March Break still holds some semblance of freedom and desire, and that is the annual Toronto Sportsmen’s Show. As with each and every year, the city of Toronto becomes a focal point for tens of thousands of individuals who attend a multi-day event which is billed as “Canada’s Biggest Fishing & Outdoor Show”. The Toronto Sportsmen’s Show, hereafter referred to as TSS, started six and a half decades ago and has growth to encompass hunting, fishing, outdoor adventuring and to the surprise of many Toronto natives… GUNS!
With the show located on numerous levels and across two buildings at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre (MTCC) from Wednesday the 14th of March until Sunday the 18th, the show was host to several hundred exhibitors and multitudes of individuals. Please allow a bit of reflection however on the history of the TSS. For sixty two (62) years, the Toronto Sportsmen’s show had existed in one form or another as an annual event located at the Canadian National Exhibition grounds (CNE), but due to the unfathomable machinations of, the previous Toronto Mayor, David Miller; forced the show to relocate to the MTCC in 2010. Why Miller’s anti-gun zealotry deemed it necessary to destroy so many decades of history and pride is beyond comprehension. Now on its third year away from the CNE, the TSS is once again running what is now their 65th anniversary. It was estimated that the City of Toronto lost nearly $14 million of revenue when the show shifted locations, the reason being that all revenue from the MTCC flows to the province of Ontario, not the city. Fast forward to 2012 and Toronto Mayor Rob Ford is opening the show which he has attended since he was a child and the hunting hall is growing.
As always, the Canadian Shooting Sports Association was present at the TSS and with the help of many volunteers was able to once again have a successful show in terms of membership growth and engaging in discussion with probably thousands of individuals throughout the duration of the show. Many thanks to CSSA Regional Director Gus M. who volunteered far more than what was asked of him and to Mr. Andrew Craig of Canadian Reload Radio fame who brought in his custom centre-fire silhouette rifle and a small video which was a great draw and topic of discussion. The CSSA thanks all who helped them with another successful show and as always the main topic of discussion was the demise of the Long Gun Registry (which TPF is proud to state just passed clause by clause reading in the senate as the author edits this entry).
Over the five (5) days of the TSS, several tens of thousands of attendees were able to experience a full gambit of outdoor pursuits as the show caters to the public and the newest wares and a “One stop shop” for nearly every outdoor need. In fact many attendees left the show in possession of products which were impulsive purchases in the first place. TPF however will concentrate this TSS review in the Hunting Hall aspect of the event. As always the primary focus of the Hunting Hall aspect was for Outdoor adventures such as hunting, hiking, boating, with additional luxury products as well as some interactive displays and pavilions being present.
This year was a slight departure from the norm, not only were there far more firearms on display for sale by retailers, this year represented the first time in many years which restricted firearms were for sale, let alone on display. Many thanks to Tactical Imports, whom took the first step, with the assistance of Mr. Tony Bernardo and the CSSA, were allowed to bring in some of there more “exotic” firearm products for the public to not only view order from them. Initially the TSS was refusing to allow Tactical Imports into the venue as it did not fit in with the traditional “Hunting” definition. When pointed out that many of the exhibitors, such as that depicted in the previous luxury product image, had little if anything to do with “Hunting” and that a firearm is a firearm, the TSS removed their objections and Tactical Import set up their display. Showing both non-restricted and restricted firearms in their booth, Tactical Imports has started what may be a growing trend by other exhibitors/retailers at the show. At least that is the hope of TPF-Online and many attendees whom we talked to.
As always some things never seem to change and that is a good thing in the case of the Toronto Sportsmen’s Association (TSA). The TSA crew has been coming to the TSS for many many years, and has always been the ones who have run the air-gun and archery ranges at the show. They are a truly exceptional group of individuals who continuously are to be thanked for exposing the future generations to the shear enjoyment that is available in shooting sport disciplines. Many thanks to Mr. Edwards and his volunteer crew for all his time and efforts over the past several years for continuing to provide exceptional public awareness and hands-on experiences like these for our youth.
The Canadian Military has been present as well in the last few years with an ever increasing display of equipment and public outreach. The author ensured that every one of our men and women in uniform whom was met at the show was thanked for their service and their efforts. TPF-Online will side step here briefly and state for the record that Support The Troops ribbons, pins, and decals are not being pro-war, but pro-survival. One does not have to believe in the circumstances which led to Canadian military involvement, but we should all wish our fellow brothers and sisters in uniform to come home safely and with as due speed. A full gambit of military hardware was present for display for TSS attendees to look at, ask questions about, and receive answers.
The Toronto Sportsmen’s Show is an annual event and it looks as though it is starting to grow out of the “traditional” mold of what constitutes our hunting aspects of outdoor recreation. That being said, the TSS is a huge endeavour which caters to the outdoors-man in most people in the Toronto region. So if you do not mind paying for parking and what some claim are excessive admission fees, you too can experience “Canada’s Biggest Fishing & Outdoor Show” every year. As TPF-Online looks forwards to next year’s show once again, we put forward the standard question: Is the Toronto Sportsmen’s Show; Tactical, Practical or Fantastical?
Video games such as Call Of Duty, Battlefield, and other first person shooters have greatly increased the appeal of firearms to the younger generations. For this TPF cannot apologize, as despite knowing that such video games turn violence into a hyped up and marketable commodity, it has done more to get the next generation of shooters into the sport than almost any other combination of approaches. That in itself shows how much farther all shooters need to reach to not only accept the newest members of our sport and hobby, but how much they need to get off their own derrieres and teach the unknowing masses what they are missing.
Unfortunately it seems that fewer people nowadays are hunting and the reason for that is because for the last couple decades, firearms have become publicly of crime and unlawful activities. Nothing can be further from the truth as 99.9% of firearms owners are caring, safety conscious individuals who, outside of hunting and wilderness survival, would find it very difficult to ever commit any form of violent act against another living creature. TPF authors personally know individuals who are firearms owners and refuse to even consider playing paintball or air-soft games for the simple reason that to play those games one would have to point a “gun” at another person. That being said the author has no issues with paintball, nor air-soft, as both are akin to the firearms community. They build teamwork, camaraderie, and just as actual firearms usage, safety is the number one responsibility of all those involved.
While hunting with firearms appears on the surface to be in decline, the reality is that more and more shooters are gravitating towards handguns, “black rifles” and action shooting sports. Readers should recall that in June 2011, TPF did indeed mention some of the various action shooting disciplines available to people. This time around TPF-Online is proud to have been able to enlist several individuals who compete professionally and have them give a tip or two about what to do if you are interested in this category of extreme sports. Be advised that many of these shooters are based in the United States and have a much more prominent network for action shooting information and contacts.
Getting into Action Shooting – Part 1! – On behalf of TPF-Online and the CSSA!
First up is Canadian shooter Sean Hansen. President of Freedom Ventures Limited, and a multiple IPSC Provincial Champion in Nova Scotia, is a strong supporter of action shooting and enjoys many years of good memories and experiences regarding his efforts in action shooting and has many more years to create more.
Next up is Blake Miguez, whom at just over 20 years old holds the title of 2011 ISPC World Champion and is proof that shooting for fun can lead into more opportunities.
The lovely and talented Julie Goloski Golob shares a bit of insight on the simple and easiest method of getting into action shooting.
Talking to these individuals is a great pleasure for reasons mentioned previously. Such individuals are thankfully not rare in the action shooting sports, and by that TPF-Online is heartened by the open and welcoming attitudes which many, if not all, of these top competitors have.
TPF hopes you the reader, and viewer in this case, hold your judgement until you see some more future shooting personalities in later installments, but as always; action shooting. Is it Tactical, Practical, or Fantastical?
Just a bit more to whet your appetite as well…
Jerry Miculek – The fastest trigger in the world and arguably the best revolver competitor that ever existed.
Todd Jarrett – A world level competitor with millions upon millions of rounds of of experience and a great ambassador to the shooting sports as well.
Back in January, an event occurred, which the author has been privileged in attending now for the sixth year in a row. The event consists of a single day of practical hands on experiences for media and then four days of talking to an ungodly number of individuals whom are representative of the entire world for Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor manufacturers, distributors and retailers. Of course this equates to the 2012 SHOT Show which is the largest venue of its kind anywhere in the world.
The Monday, January 16th, the temperature outdoors was quite decent and the sky was cloud-free which made Media Day, once again a fine day to go and play with some of the newest firearms and related products which are currently or soon to be available for the commercial markets. Optics, ammunition, handguns, rifles, shotguns, stocks, and a host of other items were available to over 1200 media individuals to experience first hand the products available. Some items truly stood out for the author and the number one item memorable experience was cranking the handle of Colt’s reproduction 1877 Gatling Gun. 20 rounds of 45/70 Government, flew by and seemed effortless as you turned the handle of this beautiful reproduction of history. High quality prototype 308 Winchester chambered bull-pup rifles, custom machined .50 BMG projectiles, the Slide Fire stock, are just a couple of the items that were experienced by the huge crowd of media types.
For the next four days the actual trade show ensued once again at the Sands Convention center. Over 1600 companies were there with in excess of 36,000 people coming to interact with them brought the total attendees to more than 61,000 people over four days. Stunning, especially when you consider that representatives from all 50 states were there as well as representation from more than 100 countries.
TPF will not go into the thousands of products that were displayed and showcased as there are multitudes of other websites and writers whom dwell on the little nuances. There were however an extreme multitude of famous and mentionable people in attendance or in some cases, on display at SHOT Show 2012. As usual the legends and successful masters of shooting disciplines were present, as well as TV sensations both past and present. Lou Ferrigno, was seen repeatedly examining various products as a guest of Barrett Firearms; as well, several participants of the TV Show Top Shot Season 4 were discovering the huge industry on display at SHOT Show 2012. Further highlights of celebrity fanfare was the feature appearances by the crew of Red Jacket Firearms from the TV show, Sons of Guns, and many others.
A short, incomplete listing of well known people who attended Shot Show:
- R. Lee Ermey
- Les Stroud
- Bear Grylls
- Ted Nugent
- Troy & Jacob Landry
- Larry Vickers
- The SeAL team/cast from the movie “Acts of Valor”
- An nearly every known professional shooter, Outdoor TV series hosts, etc…
TPF isn’t going to go into the huge details about what was present and what new products were available for the US market. Suffice to say that the author would be able to write a short novella of several tens of thousands of words showing the various new non-firearm products, let alone new guns. We will however keep you, the reader, abreast of any products which these manufacturers, distributors, and retailers, graciously provide to TPF-Online for review.
Much of the excitement and great moments at the SHOT Show is when the author met so many other Canadians on happenstance, Mrs. Page from Packing Pink, Mr. Krete from The Gun Centre, Mr. Hansen from Freedom Ventures, Mr. Muir from Lever Arms, Mr. Ruston from Tactical Products Canada, and a host of others representing Canadian businesses. Many thanks are to be given to these individuals and companies for attending and creating the contracts and arrangements which continue to supply our Canada market with firearms and related products.
If you are ever able to go, TPF-Online recommends that you do so and experience the multi-billion dollar industry which is partially displayed at SHOT Show. And recall that this is just a PARTIAL display as there are many many other businesses and manufacturers who are not in attendance. A great example is FWB, or Feinwerkbau, one of the oldest and most renowned Olympic class firearms makers, wasn’t present yet again in this year’s SHOT Show.
This years SHOT Show was executed even better than last year and once again, anyone coming should bring a couple pairs of walking shoes to explore and experience the whole event and all booths. However, be forewarned that should you attend, plan your visits to the booths they would have roughly a minute for visiting each booth, and when you consider the sheer scale of the show, much of that time can be walking from booth to booth. There are many displays and extra events which can eat up several minutes of time, such as watching professional shooters show their skills, lining up to get autographs and pictures with celebrities, as well as hands on experience with the multitudes of firearms accessories and outdoor gear.
The 2012 Shooting, Hunting, Outdoor Trade Show is the largest event of it’s type in the world and TPF can guarantee that should you ever attend this event, every single product displayed at the show will be Practical, Tactical, or Fantasical.
A small example of how you can spend your time talking to one of the many representatives of companies in attendance. Presenting Angus Hobdell, who has been shooting CZ products since 1986 and a member of Team CZ-USA since 2003. In 2012, he is still a great competitor and 100% behind promoting CZ-USA.
On behalf of TPF-Online and the CSSA, many thanks Mr. Hobdell for your time and efforts.
As an added bonus, over the next few days and weeks, TPF will be releasing small video clips from many of the top action shooters in regards to the shooting sports and tips for improving your abilities. So stay tuned!
Sincere apologies for the delays, the individuals behind TPF have had very poor luck with a variety of things lately, including health, holiday time, and being overworked in both professional and volunteer endeavours.
HOWEVER! Now that the CSSA has an official fund raising account for Canadian Gun Nutz, the list has been created for the selling of reviewed products. The official list of products offered can be found in this thread at CGN.
If you have questions please email TPF-Online. Your email will be answered within 24 hours.
Thank you all for your support, especially the companies which have helped TPF-Online become a reality and want to help the Canadian firearms user become familiar with products that are available.
It has been a distinct privilege to be supported by SOG, Gerber, Hornady, CRKT, ATI and so many others.
Many thanks for the CSSA for this opportunity to help other Canadian firearms owners as well as the CSSA itself. Also, many thanks to the folks at Canadian Reload Radio, specifically Andrew Craig and Chris Anderson, for without their influence and example, TPF would have never existed.
A snippet of what is to come:
Products from Chiappa, Hornady, CRKT, SOG, etc…
Thank you all and on behalf of TPF please enjoy the holiday season.
The Latest CSSA fund-raising dinner was held September 17th, in Oshawa, Ontario. These dinners are held a few time a year and are used as a means of generating additional funding from supporters who believe in the efforts of the CSSA. Labelled as a “Stick to your duns” event, these dinners are hosted across the country and can be hosted at various clubs and locations if so requested. This was no exception. Starting slightly behind schedule at bit past 6:00pm, cocktails were served and by 6:45 dinner was being served. It was a grand evening which was supported by scores of individuals who attended from across the region and even further.
Held at the LVIV Hall in Oshawa, the venue was spacious to say the least. With enough floor space to hold nearly 200 people comfortably, the 125 plus attendees were well spaced and there was no crowding at all. Some of the more famous individuals who attended the event were, Oshawa’s own CPC MP Collin Carrie, as well as Ajax-Pickering’s CPC MP, Chris Alexander. Oshawa’s PC MPP Jerry Ouellette was also present in between his re-election activities. However the truest, best friend to firearms owners across Canada was there as the key-note speaker. Mister Garry Breitkreuz, CPC MP for Yorkton-Melville has been representing firearms owners for almost all of his time since being a Member of Parliament since 1993. That is almost two decades that this fine individual has devoted his energies to exposing the lies and deceit surrounding the vaunted universal firearms registry and it’s associated regulations, more commonly known to gun enthusiasts as Bill C-68.
Having met Mr. Breitkreuz, several times it is apparent to TPF that he is far too modest when discussing his efforts on doing what he calls “only the right thing to do”. His address to the crowd was very informative and the CSSA must thank him for believing that our efforts are not only effective, but instrumental in “doing what is right” on behalf of the entire firearms community of Canada. In addition to Mr. Breitkreuz, there was another guest speaker who plied his comments about the CSSA and it’s actions for firearms owners everywhere. That speaker was the Host of the Daily Split, Mr. Brian Lovig. A very strong supporter of the CSSA, Mr. Lovig used his considerable talents and speaking ability to not only add some humour and sly commentary to the evening, but helped with several live auctions of items donated specifically for this event. Did TPF mention that the Daily Split is being considered for several mainstream outlets including Global. Great news.
That is not to say that the evening went entirely as planned by organizers. The wild game fare that was initially advertised was not present. TPF ferreted out that the original caterer had backed out only three days prior to the actual event. Thanks must be given to the CSSA organizers for their fast recovery and still able to have excellent food provided for all attendees. The last-minute repast consisted of pulled-pork, chicken, shrimp, as well as much more for the main meal, and was VERY well received and excellently prepared and distributed. Some last-minute scrambling for the raffles for getting them setup, and a small amount of mis-communications between those running the raffles and the ticket sellers created a small bit of confusion, but it was solved quickly. The Master of ceremonies was none other than the CSSA’s own Mr. Tony Bernardo. With much levity and smiles abounding, the entire evening was very social and had an air of camaraderie between friends.
There was literally several dozen items at the event that were available to be won. Door prizes, raffles, and both silent and live auctions. As well as four (4) firearms up for grabs, items such as numerous knives, multi-tools, firearms accessories, optics loaded several tables beckoning those in attendance to try to bring home at least one thing other than stomach full of good food. TPF was privy to many of those who donated their wares and products to help support this fund-raising effort by the CSSA. Some of those are as follows in no particular order, and TPF apologizes for not remembering ALL on them:
- Target Sports
- Triggers & Bows
- Williams Arms
- Hornady Manufacturing
- Gerber Gear
- Columbia River Knife and Tool
- Caldwell Shooting Supplies
- SOG Specialty Knives and Tools
- Stoeger Canada
- Trade Ex Canada
- Cas Hanwei
- Canada in the Rough
- Shooting Chrony Inc.
- Frankford Arsenal
- Plus numerous individual donations and others
While in attendance at the dinner, TPF ran into numerous other firearm celebrities. Mr. Chris Anderson of CRR podcast fame was there and while he failed to record the event may have made some inroads to future interviews. Diana Cabrera, a World Cup level shooter and a part of CSSA’s office staff was present as well and tried her luck and came away with some books from the raffles. Several shooting clubs has tables as well as there being several CSSA Regional Directors present. However, the highlight of the evening was when Mr. John Williams of Williams Arms (Port Perry, Ontario) won the Benelli shotgun and promptly donated it back to be re-drawn. That showed extremely good class and TPF salutes his actions.
As far as known by TPF, this was the final Stick to your Guns Dinner for 2011, which is unfortunate as the events are well received and well attended. What was mentioned is that 2012 will bring another 4-6 of these events across the country, one of course being during the CSSA’s AGM. We hope that readers who were unable to attend this fund-raising dinner are able to attend such future events and show their support by convincing others to become members, donating time to bring new people into the shooting sports, and by donating funds to ensure that the CSSA is able to continue fighting for firearms owners across Canada. As a great man, Mr. John Holdstock, once said, “The world is run by those who show up;” and this “Stick to your guns” dinner was just one such example of why the CSSA is considered to be the pre-eminent pro-firearms organization in Canada as both it and it’s membership show up.
CSSA’s “Stick to your guns” Dinner has an average ticket price of $60.00 CDN and is everything you need it to be. Tactical, Practical & Fantastical.
On behalf of the Canadian Shooting Sports Association, thank you for your continued support.
As you may have noticed, there has been a small bit of delay between reviews compared to the previous published frequency. Like many readers and most CSSA representatives, the author for TPF does all of this work on a volunteer basis and earns zero for their efforts and time. Occasionally family, employment and just plain life can keep one occupied for untold amounts of time.
The TPF’s author has been just that, busy with family, work and other volunteer efforts.
Key point was Family. It was requested, a.k.a. stressed, upon the author (by the author’s better half) to create and finish a play centre for his children. Built from scratch and with the aid of Kijiji for slides, the above image shows what took up over fort (40) hours of invested time in design, fabrication and construction just for family. That is a good use of time BTW. Add into that the volunteering for campaigning MPP’s in Ontario’s upcoming election, CSSA commitments, plus actual employment and there are never enough hours in the day, nor days in a week to accomplish everything desired. Unfortunately the item that suffered was the reviewing of products.
For those readers in whose election is occurring in October, I urge you to get out and volunteer for your local provincial candidate whose political stripe agrees with your beliefs and moral compass.
Upcoming provincial/territory fixed election dates:
October 3rd, 2011 – Prince Edward Island, North West Territories
October 4th, 2011 – Manitoba
October 6th, 2011 – Ontario
October 11th, 2011 – Newfoundland and Labrador
While there is no way to guarantee that there will not be excessive delays and gaps, TPF will strive to provide regular reviews and updates. Helping the firearms community is the primary reason for this entire endeavour, as without your support, organizations like the CSSA would not be around and TPF cannot fathom what sort of legal quagmire Canada would be in regarding firearms ownership and usage.
Thank you for your time and patience and please continue to support the efforts of those organizations and individuals whom are on the front lines in the fight for firearms owners in Canada.
For the days of July 22-24, Orangeville, Ontario was the host for the latest Huntfest. Hosted by Wild TV, this Huntfest in was held at the Orangeville Agricultural Society building at 247090 5 Sideroad, Mono, Ontario. This building is commonly the home of a local gun show held and organized every few months by Mrs. Monica Wright. For those readers who are unfamiliar with the concept of Huntfest, it is an event which is used by the hunting industry to promote themselves and their new products. It is also a venue for dealers and retailers to sell their wares to the public. It was quite a surprise to the author when the location was slated to host a Huntfest!
Now as a father of two small children under the age of 6, the author is very hard pressed to actually have the time to actually view any Wild TV programming, so TPF cannot comment on the programming, advertising and general appeal of Wild TV. The author does however applaud the decision to hold such an event in Ontario due to the fact that the only level of hunting/sporting event similar in format would be that of the Toronto Sportsmen’s Show and their “Hunting Hall”. Yet that is more of a giant retailer sale than a showcase opportunity. As usual the Canadian Shooting Sports Association (CSSA) was there to promote shooting sports, help educate firearms owners, and of course gather additional memberships. Other organizations such as the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters (OFAH) and the National Firearms Association (NFA) were in attendance as well.
The days of the Huntfest were the hottest days in recent history with temperatures making the he facility nearly unbearable for exhibitors yet they did persevere. The author was pleased to attend and help represent the CSSA during the entire show and was fortunate to be working the booth alongside Canada’s number one firearms lobbyist, Mr. Tony Bernardo. Admittedly, due to the layout, the Laser Shot game was mainly the author’s responsibility and as always being able to bring smiles to the faces of people of all ages is well worth the time and effort of such events. Both the very young and the elderly were attracted to the minute or so of relief that the game provided during which the oppressing heat was forgotten. Literally hundreds of individuals stopped by, some repeatedly, to test their skills at Laser Shot. Mr. Bernardo’s speaking and enthusiasm was a constant reminder of how knowledgeable, dedicated , and committed the man is to fighting for the rights of the Canadian Firearms Community. Be it a single individual or a group of them, Tony was his usual informative and enthusiastic self, describing the latest United Nations news and how the CSSA benefits its members, the community and firearms owners as a whole. Just talk to him and you will understand why the author believes that the CSSA is at the top of the pile for pro-firearms organizations in Canada.
During the infrequent lulls between droves of people attending the show, TPF was able to make a few rounds about the facilities and see what was going on and the general overview of Huntfest in Orangeville. This Huntfest was originally supposed to be a grand endeavour with hundreds of companies in attendance but by the end of setup on the scorching Thursday night, there was much rumblings about a lack of participation. This was obvious as the lower than expected exhibitor attendance resulted in some areas of the building being unused. Opening day on Friday was a lack lustre event which was determined to be a poor turnout with some of those TPF talked to. Combined with an extended Friday closing time with nearly zero consumer attendance and many exhibitors were already unhappy with the choice of venue for this iteration of Huntfest. However, the following two days showed far more improvement with many attending exhibitors acknowledging that by the end of the event they were satisfied, if not beaming with the results. On Sunday, just prior to the close of the event, much of that Friday evening dismay had been reversed and the exhibitors and vendors were far more upbeat and positive in their overview of Orangeville’s Huntfest.
For those that are still wondering, the concept of Huntfest is to create an opportunity for consumers to come to a single location and not only see what is available in the Canadian Marketplace, but to find out how to get those products or even acquire then at the event. Huntfest has been described as a trade show and to a certain point it is. Manufacturers attend to display their range of available products and showcase their newest ones, while dealers and retailers of these products are in attendance to support the consumer, that being the attendees. Companies such as Savage Arms, Scorpion Optics, and Trade Ex Canada Inc, took such an opportunity and showcased some of their products and wares. Local dealers/retailers as also in attendance with their wares available for attendees to purchase, some even at lower than store sticker price. Archery, hunting, camouflage apparel, calls, tools, guns and the remaining spectrum of hunting products were on display at the three day event. Add in reptile exhibits, falconry shows and a slew of presenters for in-person seminars and music concert and Wild TV’s Huntfest, Orangeville had everything that the outdoors man, sport shooter, hunter, and hiker could ever need. TPF was proud to be a small part of the event and look forwards to future ones should they occur.
While the author wanted to take numerous photographs and give the readers a visual representation of the quality and variety of exhibitors that were at Huntfest, it was literally too busy for more than small jaunts across the facility for a quick minute or two of discussion before the next rush came in at the CSSA booth. However, we do have some images from nearby events and have included them here for your viewing pleasure.
Wild TV’s Huntfest – Orangeville 2011 may not have been a great success that organizers were hoping for, but if the final days of attendance was an indication, it may very well continue and grow in Ontario’s future. Hopefully next time the weather co-operates and the advertising efforts bring in far more exhibitors and attendees.
Rating of Wild TV’s Huntfest – Orangeville 2011 is a little different than usual for TPF in that:
Is Huntfest, Orangeville 2011
Tactical, Practical, or Fantastical? Great!, Decent event, Needs work, or Complete fail?
That is up to you, the readers, and specifically those that attended the event to determine. Please contact Huntfest Organizers at firstname.lastname@example.org and let them know what you think they need to improve and make the show more successful.
Special thanks goes out to Chris Anderson who stopped by and felt that TPF was worth interviewing a second time, the first which occured during the EESA open house. As an originator of Canadian Reload Radio, Mr. Anderson was part of the first Canadian firearms online podcast created, and has since branched off as part of their network of firearms related podcasts. It is high praise indeed when Mr. Tony Bernardo believed that Mr. Anderson is one of the best interviewers that he has encountered due to his thoroughness and preparedness for interviews.
The author of TPF has been shooting for a short time compared to many, a scant dozen years of firearms experience under his belt. As with most individuals who are into shooting, the entire ordeal started with the acquisition of a single rimfire rifle and a bag of old soup cans and other small items to enjoy shooting at. Since that point in time however, interests change, as does exposure to whole new fields of firearm events and disciplines which are radical changes from plinking at tin cans. A few of those disciplines are those in the category of Action Shooting Sports.
What are Action Shooting Sports? Unlike most shooting disciplines, action shooting mainly does away with static position firing and utilizes movement and strategies which challenge competitors physically and mentally in a safety oriented game in which competitors must physically overcome and avoid obstacles in order to engage various targets with the greatest accuracy in the least amount of time. These games of skill, speed, and techniques have multiple reasons for being popular and showing continued increase in participants. These reasons can be a trial to improve one’s self, have fun in a non-static shooting event, or even strive to be a top competitor in your discipline. As with ALL shooting disciplines safety is the number one rule and must be adhered to at all times. Failure to follow these safety protocols will at best disqualify you from matches and at worst could lead to legal ramifications. Firearms are tools and can be used in recreational activities for immense enjoyment and entertainment, yet unsafe handling can lead to negligent discharges and the possibility of injury. Thankfully, Canada’s action shooters practice levels of safety which far exceed federal requirements as most competitors are extremely safety conscious.
Most action shooting sports practised in Canada are those which utilize a handgun and require a holster for participation of the game, yet several disciplines include rifles and shotguns in their rules and regulations. TPF will only be concentrating on the handgun portion of Action Shooting Sports at this time.Here are some background and details on some of the more popular action shooting disciplines which have captured the attention of tens of thousands of Canadian shooters, the author among them.
Disciplines of Action Shooting:
International Practical Shooting Confederation (aka IPSC)
While it’s origins can be traced back to the late 1950’s in California, the International Practical Shooting Confederation (IPSC) was officially founded in Columbia, Missouri, in May 1976. IPSC’s origins began as a competition in a newer realm of action shooting. It is widely considered to be the founding father of all action shooting disciplines due to it’s history and initial departure from traditional shooting sports. Primarily a handgun based sport, IPSC is derogatorily known as running and gunning due to the fast paced action while participating in a course of fire. A Latin phrase; Diligentia, Vis, Celeritas (DVC) is the basis for all IPSC participation. These translate into Accuracy, Power, Speed. These three items are the cornerstones of what IPSC embodies and it’s popularity is evidenced by participation in over 80 countries around the world and having literally tens of thousands of competitors among those participating countries.
IPSC also has addition divisions outside of handgun, these are Rifle, Shotgun and, as of 2010, Action Air. Action Air is controversial as it does not embody the “power” aspect in IPSC and usually only found in countries where firearms ownership is extremely difficult.
International Defensive Pistol Association (aka IDPA)
After many years of IPSC, a group of individuals (Bill Wilson, John Sayle, Ken Hackathorn, Dick Thomas, Walt Rauch and Larry Vickers) believed that IPSC had become an equipment race and the courses of fire had become extravagant obstacle courses. In 1996, the International Defensive Pistol Association (IDPA) was founded. IDPA decided to keep the gaming aspect but made the game revolve around real world defensive scenarios. Regulating the firearms to minimal alterations and adopting a more tactical outlook, IDPA became a slower version of IPSC with many technical penalties added in to create a more reality based action shooting game. From the website, “the main goal is to test the skill and ability of an individual, not his equipment or gamesmanship.” IDPA has gained acceptance in Canada in the last half dozen years and now has continued to grow to several thousand members in Canada alone. In the last 5 years the number of clubs that practice IDPA has tripled across Canada to number nearly two dozen.
Ontario Defensive Pistol League (aka ODPL)
The Ontario Defensive Pistol League (ODPL) started originally as a Canadian copy of IDPA. Back in the late nineties while IDPA was growing in the USA, several individuals decided to emulate it in Ontario. The Independent Defensive Pistol Association – Ontario was formed without the blessing of the IDPA and decided to use formal IDPA rules and start their own Action Shooting locally in Canada. For nearly a decade IDPA-Ontario existed and then underwent a face lift and converted into the ODPL. There were some rule changes in regards to scoring and penalties between ODPL and IDPA; but the biggest difference was the lack of shooter skill grading and the requirement to be a member of an organization in order to compete in ODPL. ODPL also has incorporated rifles and shotgun usage aspired from multiple gun matches commonly found in the United Staes of America. Officially there are seven (7) clubs in Ontario which host ODPL events and more are in the works.
Canadian Defensive Pistol (aka CDP)
Canadian Defensive Pistol (CDP) originated under the purview of Mr. Dave Burke, who decided that Canada needed a Canadian version of IDPA (prior to IDPA expanding into Canada). The concept was to take those Canadian Shooting Clubs which already hosted IDPA-like matches, but were not officially IDPA affiliates, and give them a set of rules and regulations similar to IDPA but with Canadian flavour to them. While the concept was sound, the execution of CDP dragged and the complete rewording of commonly used IDPA terminology did not translate well. CDP still exists in some clubs, but has fallen to the wayside for a multitude of reasons. The CSSA is determining if it should completely pull out of CDP matches, redesign, revamp and relaunch CDP entirely, or come out with a generic Action Shooting Guide book that would give information to clubs who wish to run action shooting without being associated to anyone.
Action Shooting Sports are some of the fastest growing shooting activities in Canada. The amazing thing about these sports is that their safety records are nearly perfect with injuries only resulting from sprains and strains. That is correct. A game/competition where individuals have their times recorded for completing a given course of fire, assessed accuracy penalties, and are penalized for procedural violations. Several thousands of Canadians, shooting millions of rounds annually, for the last several years and have ZERO firearm related injuries. There are several reasons for that. As with all firearms disciplines, safety is the primary, secondary, and tertiary rule government the usage of firearms. To that effect there are several options which are available for learning the various games and the required safety levels in Action Shooting.
All of these disciplines involve the use of handguns with a minimum calibre of 9mm/.38 Special and are the primary tools for competing in these games. Add in multiple magazines, holsters, and gear, and you can range from under $500 to several thousands just for competition equipment, and that is prior to expenditures of ammunition. IDPA, ODPL, and CDP are usually considered to be a cheaper alternative than IPSC due to the generally greater numbers of magazines utilized, the higher volume of rounds expended, however, one can compete in IPSC using the same equipment that is acceptable for usage in the other aforementioned disciplines.
IPSC’s Black Badge course is the most comprehensive and intense training available for those wishing to learn how to compete in IPSC matches. Usually a 3 day event requiring just shy of one thousand (1000) rounds of ammunition, the Black Badge course is geared specifically for those interested in IPSC and holders of such are recognized by ALL other disciplines in Canada as having acceptable certifications for action shooting. That being said, IPSC ONLY authorizes those who have attained a Black Badge to compete in IPSC events.
IDPA in Canada has a New Shooter Orientation Course (NSOC) which allows competitors to become familiarized with the usage of handguns in a holster and the basics of competing in an IDPA Match. IDPA accepts all accredited certifications in order to participate in official matches. As the author has not experienced this course, it is difficult to tell you how many rounds or what the course entails. By far the least expensive prospect of all available courses. IDPA recognizes IPSC, CDP, course qualifications in addition to the NSOC. To shoot sanctioned matches you need to be a member of IDPA.
ODPL at one time considered creating a training regime but it was decided to allow all other forms of accreditation and not split up manpower and time resources to dedicated training courses. As ODPL has no membership requirements, as long as the individual has an accepted qualification,they are allowed to shoot all ODPL matches.
CDP arranged to have courses to be performed by CSSA instructors, this course is between IDPA’s NSOC and IPSC’s Black Badge. Performed over one and a half days, and roughly 400 rounds of ammunition, the course teaches holster usage and the technical basics for defensive pistol shooting. To shoot sanctioned matches you need to be a member of CDP.
Which one is the best to participate in?
That is a question that can only be answered by yourself. I do recommend if you decide to try it, go to a local club practice night for the related discipline. Not all clubs shoot all, or even any, of these disciplines, but watch a practice or a match and see if it interests you. The camaraderie and friendships developed by the author has made Action Shooting a, hopefully, permanent fixture in his life. As with all firearms related activities, Stay safe and enjoy!
Action Shooting Sports – Tactical, Practical, or Fantastical?
I joined the CSSA nearly 5 years ago because of a series of events beginning with a desire to find out more about guns and reloading.
Now I have owned various firearms for just over a decade. I’ve since bought firearms and resold them to other licensed individuals all across Canada. I still have my first shotgun sitting in a corner of my gun safe. That Cooey 840, single shot, break-action shotgun has actually shot more flats of 12ga than any other shotgun I have owned since, although my Mossberg 500 is soon catching up. When I bought that Cooey at my first firearm auction, I paid $12.50 for the shotgun and $25 to the government to register it. At that time I had unwittingly given up being a trusted Canadian Citizen by becoming an official firearms owner here. The path of who I am today started there…
The chain of events started in mid-2005 when I was looking for reloading data for my newest acquisition; a dedicated moose rifle chambered in .300 Winchester Magnum… Up until then I had a couple shotguns and a pair of well used .22’s. During the google searching I came across a link to a post in an online forum. That post gave me the beginnings of the reloading bug and a desire to learn even more about all the different firearms out there. That forum was Canadian Gun Nutz, aka CGN. Finding CGN turned out to be both a blessing and a curse, as I began to learn more and more about all sorts of firearms, accessories, reloading, and events, I started to realize just how little actually knew about firearms and realized how much the legislation involved in firearms ownership was geared specifically to deter people from wanting to own or possess them. During the next few months I began to learn about the political side of “gun control” and the decline of firearms owners due to the cost and confusion surrounding the firearms act brought in by 1995’s Bill C-68. It was here that I first came across the organization called the Canadian Shooting Sports Association, or CSSA for short.
In 2006 I had an opportunity to attend the SHOT Show as a guest of a friend I knew… The Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade Show was like a new world to me at the time. Firearms of every shape, size, and calibre was present at the show; from pocket purse pistols, to over/under shotguns worth over $100K apiece… On a whim I decided to attend a gathering in what would become a pivotal point in my life. During the week of the SHOT Show I attended a small gathering hosted by the CSSA. There I met Tony Bernardo, the #1 pro-gun lobbyist in Canada, after talking to him and a couple of others from the CSSA who were in attendance, I joined up on the spot.
The CSSA is the arguably the best pro-firearms organization available in Canada. From their lobby efforts at all levels of Canadian government as well as on the international stage, the CSSA has done extremely well for the limited manpower, and limited finances available for them. Starting in 2000, from a merger of the Ontario Handgun Association and the Ontario Smallbore Federation, when it was deemed that an effective National Voice was required to protect and enhance the rights of the Canadian Firearms Community. Over the years I have found myself more and more in agreement with the actions and activities promoted by the CSSA and since then I have progressed through the ranks of the CSSA. I started as just a member and worked through being a Field Representative, to a Regional Director, and recently elected to the Board of Directors itself. It has been five years since that fateful meeting and since then I have done things and met people I would never have thought possible to do, all in the name of being a Pro-Firearms Advocate.
Some of the things which I have done since:
1. Traveled across the country on behalf of the CSSA, and represented firearms owners across Canada.
2. Meeting the Prime Minister of Canada. Not just once, but several times.
3. Have written and had published hundreds of letters, articles, and reviews associated to firearms.
4. Met and befriended many like-minded individuals, many of whom I would trust my life with.
5. Met the current and past presidents of the NRA, and many other firearms prominent celebrities.
6. Interviewed and conversed with many, many others I would have never otherwise dreamed of approaching, such as actor Thomas Jane (HBO’s Hung, Punisher).
In truth, since that meeting, I have become more self-confident, self-aware, and outgoing, and in my opinion, a much better person.
I love my family and friends, they are the reason I joined the CSSA and decided to volunteer much of my free time. I want my children to be able to do the following:
1. To allow them the ABILITY to use all firearms in a safe responsible manner. If firearms are inaccessible and verboten, nobody can enjoy them legally.
2. To allow them the CHOICE to use firearms if they desire. It is a choice of the individual to use firearms in a responsible manner. If they choose not to use firearms for fun, sport, sustenance, and/or defence; that is their choice. Do NOT assume make that choice for others.
It is these primarily reasons why I am in this fight to protect and enhance our rights in Canada. Help support our efforts. Join the CSSA today!
And a ringing endorsement by Brian Lovig from the Daily Split!
Well it was 6 weeks of utter chaos and lack of sleep so TPS apologizes for the delay in posting any new reviews. Helping our local Conservative Party of Canada candidate try to be re-elected for a third term. Some of the activities are as follows:
- Hundreds and hundreds of lawn signs installed (including TWO on my front lawn)!
- Canvassing several hundred homes across 96 km^2 (37 miles^2) of riding.
- Dropping literature at several thousand apartments in the riding.
- Attending several local region all-canadate debates
- Attending several local region campaign rallys (including 3 with the party leader, Stephen Harper, present).
- The letters written to the various newspapers.
- Scrutineering on election night to ensure fair & impartial accounting of the votes.
That doesn’t even include the 40 hours a week I work to earn a living, nor the dozens of hours and weekends volunteering for the CSSA during the same 6 week stretch. In the end a victory the Conservative Party of Canada. On May 2nd, 2011, for the election of Canada’s 41st Government, 14,720,580 individuals cast their votes to elect a 308 seat parliament. With 61.4% voter turnout, the CPC won 54.2% of the seats for a clear majority government.
With a majority mandate, the much discussed, heavily debated, Long-Gun Registry should be finally removed after years of promises and a multitude of attempts in a minority government. That means a WIN for the Canadian Firearms Community, and a great first step to responsible, effective firearms legislation which penalizes criminals, not those of us who are law-abiding at heart.
My MP (Member of Parliament), Harold Albrecht, defeated all challengers handily (by over 17,000 votes above either of the two major challengers). However, on what should have been his greatest day of triumph, tragedy struck. After a great leisurely day, Mr. & Mrs. Albrecht finished dinner and were preparing to attend the CPC gathering hoping for a victory party to ensue… Mrs. Albrecht, claimed a sudden severe headache and then passed into unconsciousness. 38 hours later, Mrs. Betty Albrecht passed away from spontaneous intracranial hemorrhaging, more commonly known as a brain aneurysm. When he could have been celebrating his third term elected, Harold and his family were surrounding Betty at a Hamilton hospital, praying for her.
I am sure you will understand that if I state, I would have rather lost the riding than have such events happen to such a great individual. I have only known the Albrechts for the last 5 years, and I am a better person for knowing Harold, Betty and their selfless family. Thank you Harold, for your values, commitment to family, and above all else, your unyielding devotion to your beliefs.
Betty Albrecht, 1952 – 2011
To give you an understanding of how much Betty was loved:
On Valentine’s Day in 2008, Albrecht rose in the House of Commons to pay tribute to his wife.
“While the list of those who have influenced my life and encouraged me along my journey is a long one, there is one person to whom I am most indebted and who deserves great thanks on this very special day: My wife Betty,” he said.
“I will never be able to thank Betty for her faithful commitment over the past 36 years, but today I want her to know how deeply she is loved. I am grateful that God has blessed my life with her as my best friend and wife.”
The two days of visitations had over 1200 individuals attend. At the funeral, several dozen other MP’s and their spouses attended the funeral of Betty Albrecht on their OWN volition. Plus add in Prime Minister of Canada as well as the dozen or so local politico’s (mayor’s councillors, MPP’s, etc…) should give you some idea of how well-respected and loved Harold and Betty were in the community and in Ottawa. The church holding the funeral, regularly seats 900+ people. They had stackable chairs against each other in the aisles and another room opened up downstairs to allow more people to be in attendance, to accommodate nearly 1200 people attending to pay their respects and show their love and support to the Albrecht family… Betty will be missed by many, but never forgotten.