Two attendees at the San Angelo Gun Club daughters' range day last year.

Daughters’ day at the range


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American girls are about to get a taste of shooting in the second annual National Take Your Daughter to the Range Day, a US initiative that aims to bring more young women into the sport.< /p>

The event has already evolved to become more of a whole-family range day, after last year’s inaugural shoot encouraged more than just dads and daughters to come along.< /p>

While there are a number of junior shooting programs in Australia that have similar aims, the US’s NTYDTTRD has a high profile because of the publicity it has generated as well as its national, annual status.< /p>

US guns laws in many states also allow significant differences from Australian range shoots. For example, girls as young as six can participate, whereas Australia’s gun laws prevent anyone younger than 12 from shooting at ranges. < /p>

The event upholds safety and fun as the two key aspects of the day.< /p>

“Boys learn to shoot in Scouts or with their Dads,” event founder Lynne Finch said. “Often, the girls are left behind because shooting isn’t ‘girly’. Well, we can and do shoot, and well. < /p>

“Learning to shoot gives young women confidence, helps to build self-esteem, and introduces them to a sport they can participate in their whole lives.”< /p>

She believes that while in the US it is a desire for self-defence that often brings women into the sport, they discover it is a lot more fun than they expected and often adopt it as a hobby.< /p>

“I have grown since I started shooting,” she said. “I’m more confident, it helped my sense of self-esteem to learn a new sport, and I know I can defend myself. More than that, it is fun! < /p>

“More women are coming to shooting, [so] wouldn’t it be wonderful to encourage parents to teach their daughters to shoot? A family bonding experience, a great experience for young girls, maybe even introduce someone who is new to the sport to something they can enjoy the rest of their lives.”< /p>

NTYDTTRD will be held in the US on Saturday, 15 June.


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Mick Matheson

Mick grew up with guns and journalism, and has included both in his career. A life-long hunter, he has long-distant military experience and holds licence categories A, B and H. In the glory days of print media, he edited six national magazines in total, and has written about, photographed and filmed firearms and hunting for more than 15 years.

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