“I just don’t get it!” That was a comment I remember an older gentleman saying at the January 2012 SHOT Show. His remark was in reference to the growing number of booths that were showing some item associated with Zombie warfare. It might have been a display showing blood…guts…and plenty of gore, or it might have been something much more innocent such as paper Zombie targets. Whatever the case, there seems to be a Zombie revolution taking place in the shooting world.
One of the biggest, if not the biggest, Zombie shoots in the country takes place at Ahlman’s Gun Shop in rural Morristown, Minnesota. This morning I decided to check it out. I did not participate, rather, I watched and took video of the massive event.
So, what is a Zombie shoot you ask? I gotta be honest…when I left the shooting range I was still scratching my head over this question. I suppose Zombies are much more acceptable to shoot than people, but the truth is a Zombie shoot is just a good ol’ fashion excuse to get out and shoot your guns. That’s really all it is.
In today’s event there were no scores kept. It was just a bunch of good-natured guys and gals spending a day doing what they love—shooting. Oh, and with that many folks toting guns safety was a top priority, but I was amazed at the quality of shooters and the respect nearly all of them showed for keeping things safe and playing by the safety rules.
Scattered throughout the gun range were plenty of bloody, nasty props just to remind everyone the true reason they were there. And most participants had ample supplies of ammunition to feed shotguns, handguns, and the ever present modern sporting rifle. A bevy of stages allowed shooters to get their fill of short range, as well as long range shooting.
Quite honestly I was very pleased to have made it out of there alive, considering I came unarmed just to cover this event as media. No Zombie attacks. Perhaps they figured that because I was not carrying any guns I did not have a brain worth seeking. Who knows.
The point is as silly as these Zombie shoots may seem to some within our shooting ranks, there is no denying how the Zombie craze is catching on at a feverish pace. And that’s good. Seriously, the person who developed this concept is a genius and should be congratulated by every gun owner.
The more people we can attract into shooting the better off our shooting heritage will be. Not everyone owns a gun to go hunting. Many firearm owners have them purely for self-defense or pleasure shooting. Still, we are all brethren who must fight for our shooting rights together.
Not everyone likes to target shoot at paper with concentric circles and a bullseye. Some folks want action, suspense and a little bit of flair which comes with going on a Zombie hunt.
That old timer I overhead at the SHOT Show in January…I’m not sure what role he plays in the shooting industry. I suspect he could have been a dealer who was just walking the show looking for deals. Makes me wonder. How long will it take for a guy like that to recognize that if he quickly embraces this silly Zombie craze…well, heck…he might be able to sell a few more toys to folks who look for wacky ways to have fun? I suspect not too long.
©2012 Jim Braaten. All Rights Reserved. No Reproduction without Prior Permission.