In this second installment of my monthly update from General Operations, I wish to recognize the hundreds of thousands of competitive shooters who exemplify the traditions of the first NRA Creedmoor Matches held in April 1873. Whether you carry your precision-pistol gun box to the 50-yard line, adjust your sling for the 200-rapid in service rifle or prepare your equipment for any of the 11,000 other shooting events that NRA facilitates each year, know that your participation in our sport also serves as an ambassador of freedoms not enjoyed in many parts of the world. As I reflect on the respect shared among shooting sports competitors—from tyros to high masters—I am reminded of the inspirational speech to the men and women gathered to hear President Teddy Roosevelt when he observed: “… The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming ….” To all of the youth organizations, adaptive shooters, men and women who portray the spirit of the American pioneer, defenders of freedom and world-class sportsmanship, we salute you.
Let me also highlight two important changes to the competitive shooting calendar. First, the National Police Shooting Championships (NPSC) is moving back to Mississippi. The Mississippi Highway Patrol, the Mississippi Department of Public Safety and the NRA will host the 2019 NRA NPSC at the Mississippi Law Enforcement Officer’s Training Academy in Pearl, Miss., Sept. 23–25. Rolling out the welcome mat, Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant said, “Mississippi is proud to host the 2019 NRA National Police Championships and excited to show what our great state has to offer to the hundreds of law enforcement officers that will be in the Magnolia State.”
Also, the National Pistol and Rifle Matches are officially moving in 2020 from Camp Perry, Ohio, to Camp Atterbury, Ind. Indiana’s Governor Eric J. Holcomb has announced that, “Camp Atterbury will serve as an exceptional venue for marksmanship championships that promote education and responsibility.” Camp Atterbury, located on 35,000 acres just west of Edinburgh, Ind., has a long history of marksmanship training. Since opening in 1942, Camp Atterbury has hosted units from all branches of the military.
If you are already among the ranks of NRA Competitive Shooting, thank you for your loyal participation. If you would like to learn more about the NRA Competitive Shooting Division, competitive resources or how to run your own tournament, call 877-672-6282 or email [email protected] For the free online NRA magazine Shooting Sports USA, visit ssusa.org.