PRATT — There's ax throwing, zombie hunting, indoor shooting range, archery targets and much more at Shooter's Corner, a new business in Pratt put together by local businessman Dale Withers and accomplices.
All venues will be open Nov. 1 except for the indoor shooting range, which will open as part of a grand opening celebration 11 a.m.-2 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 2.
"We really just wanted to create a place where we could educate kids about how to properly use guns and provide something to do. We needed a place where old folks could have some fun too, all with a high emphasis on safety," said former Pratt Chief of Police Gary Myers who will be managing the business.
Myers said training experts in a variety of genres will be on hand regularly to provide hunter's safety courses, conceal and carry registrations, personal protection skills and much more.
"We are doing everything according to the law, under scrutiny of federal agencies, so there will be background checks on things like gun sales," Myers said. "We also will be meeting all EPA, OSHAA and HIPA requirements for things like lead contamination. This will be a very safe place for families, individuals, couples, anyone to come in and let off some steam, have some fun and learn the value of weapons and how to use them."
A special HAVOC system collects all the lead from the indoor shooting range, and filters all powder, residue and contaminants in the air out of the building. The state-of-the art ventilation system was put together by Larry Martin and others who visited numerous indoor gun ranges and put together the best ideas for this one-of-a-kind facility in Pratt.
"Larry, he was the instigator of this all," said Withers. "He had some fun at a shooting range in Grove, Okla. and came back and told me we needed to have something like this in Pratt. It's all been a work in progress since then."
Withers said Shooter's Corner was now the only place in Kansas where a person may test bow strings on an archery target, rent a gun and shoot manual or electronically controlled targets, use laser pistols to blast watermelons, pumpkins and zombies, buy or trade guns, get ammunition and reloading supplies or take classes in self-defense and gun safety. Ax-throwing leagues will be formed as interest is expressed.
"We needed a place to for young people to learn about guns," Withers said. "This place came together as a lot of collective ideas that just fell into place as we began construction. We've worked out a wide variety of activities for all ages."