I cannot tell you the excitement I felt as I put together the concept of a Girlfriend Gun Party- finally, a way to reach more women with fun and education. It is a way to expose women to firearms education without scaring them with live fire or loud ranges. When you gather with your friends, you are already in a comfortable, known situation- add the excitement of learning something new together, it is fun bonding time.
The idea stemmed from working at a local range, a group of five women came in to get private instruction as a group. The caveat was that they were only paying for an hour, and private instruction is $50 per person per hour. Let’s see that’s $50 x 5 =$250 plus additional range costs. As their instructor, I had to squeeze in as much information as I could and get them on the range to shoot within 60 minutes. I realized one hour was not sufficient, for the purpose of the individual women learning. I would rather provide personal quality instruction for more women than charge more per person.
As a woman who is trying to encourage other women to try firearms and learn to shoot, this experience felt impossible.
The alternative is another gun range that offers 40 minutes of a video, female instructor standing in front of a group demonstrating how to grip and load/unload with other general terms, then time on the range with a .22 revolver and .22 semi-automatic, shoot 50 rounds- here’s your t-shirt, thanks for coming for $30. Again, not enough time, not enough instruction or one on one time. If all you want to do is show up to a range and shoot, just do that. If you want help, guidance, and someone to help you- that’s what I am here for.
We see the parties everywhere, ones for jewelry, clothing, make-up, skincare, etc. – why not one for private instruction? Why not have a little safe fun?
I arrived to meet Kim, she showed me the church building where we would be meeting and I started setting up. One by one, the other ladies arrived. We introduced ourselves and chatted while we waited for the remaining women to arrive. We put name tags on so I could get their names right, you’ll see why that is funny in a moment. We talked together about their firearm experience and fears. I explained that this ‘party’ is an introduction only, not intended to replace a formal firearms training class.
We got started. First, we talked about the firearm safety rules and their meaning and reason. Next, I demonstrated how a firearm works and explained each components part and their proper name. Each woman held, cleared and manipulated a firearm as they learned.
Once everyone felt comfortable, we moved on to dominant eye practical exercises. Determining which dominant hand and dominant eye for each participant allows me to be able to tailor individual instruction in a small group setting. As I worked around with the ladies, I couldn’t see Julie’s name tag and I adopted the name Linda in my mind for her. Every time I went to say her name, it came out as Linda. There was not a Linda at the party. We laughed at this over and over again as I apologized over and over again.
Each woman got a chance to hold different firearms, to clear them, manipulate their controls and get familiar. We moved on to stance and then grip. Once the stance and grip were established we worked on sight alignment.
During these practical exercises, each woman received individual attention to check for consistency and to address any issues. Once they felt comfortable, we moved on to shooting one by one. This was a larger crowd, a group of seven, so the individual shots took longer. During each woman’s shot, they got instant feedback, what they are doing well and what to do improve on.
Once every one shot, it was time for the SHOOT-OUT! The ladies were fun, it was such a great time and it was amazing to see their confidence shine as they shot against each other. I asked for feedback about the party, we all hugged, thanked each other for a great time and left for home. I felt honored to be a part of their tribe for a moment in time, to be able to assist them in learning a new skill. I’m excited for the next Girlfriend Gun Party! Book yours today at http://liveloveload.com/training/girlfriend-gun-party/