Michael Ryen, along with Vance Ewing and their wives run the Bow & Barrel Sportsman Center in St. Roberts, Missouri. This 8500 square foot Pulaski County sportsman center offers archery and target shooting, self-defense classes and more! Bow & Barrel Sportsman Center has been open since 2013. They offer an indoor shooting range, outdoor archery range, retail shop and cafe. A family oriented business, their mission is, “Our vision at Bow and Barrel Sportsmen Center is to provide a safe and secure learning environment for our customers through the use of a spacious facility supported by a courteous certified staff. Our company focuses our efforts on safety, responsible usage, and encouragement of education while by providing an enjoyable atmosphere for all customers.”
It was this July at Bow & Barrel on a hosted visit to Pulaski County that I had my first ever chance to do some target shooting. Michael Ryen took the time to show me how to properly hold a gun and safely fire at a target. I had never held a gun before although I have been exposed to the hobby. My husband Keith and father both shot clay pigeons in their younger days. And living in the country we do have the occasional rabid animal, so I should know how to handle a gun. I admit, I have just been skittish in the past.
Michael was very careful to show me how to hold the gun and load it. He said there are three things I needed to know before my target practice experience. 1) How to hold the gun 2) You only load a gun when it is time to shoot 3) Never point a gun at anyone or anything, only at the target.
Once I had mastered the first three fundamentals, Michael showed me how to shoot at a still target. We were in a lane, one of seven and it took a bit of concentration when others were shooting in other lanes. Michael stayed with me and made sure that I was comfortable and helped me the entire time. I was surprised that I actually did okay. Once I fired a few rounds I got more assertive and confident. While I don’t see myself being Annie Oakley in my future, I have a much better feeling around firearms now than I did before.
There was a second session more of a self-defense type of exercise where the target is moving and coming at you. I admit, I was much better at the still target, than moving target, but I did hit my mark. Keith was watching the entire time and I think was glad to be behind us and behind bullet proof glass!
Most important though Michael Ryen made me feel safe holding the gun and comfortable shooting. Whether you are a hunter, shoot target like my father did clay pigeons, knowing how to handle the equipment is at the top of the list in this sport like all other sports. If in the area and wanting to check out a little archery, target practice, or in need of some sporting items, stop by! They have lots of fun sounding events and neat classes. If I lived closer I would check into the self-defense classes. I was especially impressed with the classes they were teaching for young ladies getting ready to go off to college.
Log onto http://www.bowandbarrelsports.com/index.html for details.