Support the NRA and the shooting sports at Friends of NRA dinners in Colorado, South Carolina, Texas and more

Friends of NRA

Fairfax, Virginia - Here are the next batch of upcoming Friends of NRA banquets across the country courtesy of Nicole McMahon, NRA Event Marketing and Communications Manager.

We're in the final stretch of this year's banquet season. Less than 100 banquets remain of the more than 1,100 Friends of NRA held annually throughout the United States. None of these events would have been possible without the hard work of our dedicated volunteers. All money raised at banquets goes right back into supporting the shooting sports - half into national programs and half into local and state programs where the banquet was held.

To attend an event in your neighborhood, check the Friends of NRA website for a list of upcoming events in your state. Bookmark that page while you're at it because next year's events will begin popping up soon.

Find out where Friends of NRA dinners are happening ...

With hogs and alligators in abundance, American Hunter does its best to thin the herd

American Hunter's Karen Mehall poses with her alligator in the Florida everglaedes Karen Mehall, Senior Editor for NRA's American Hunter magazine, shares the tale of trip to Florida for hogs and gators

A first-ever gator seemed like the hard part of this swamp hunt. That is, until the author tried her luck on Florida’s hogs.

As I passed a TV on that July evening in 2012, chilling words caught my attention: “If I could break my arm off, I had a chance. If I couldn’t break my arm off, I was dead.” Seventeen-year-old Kaleb Langdale had just made national news when an alligator bit off his arm in Florida’s Caloosahatchee River. As the gator performed the infamous “death roll,” spinning rapidly as it dragged Kaleb underwater, the boy made a life-saving decision: He jerked his arm out of the gator’s mouth to sever it at the elbow and swim to safety. “Authorities caught the alligator about four hours later,” the report continued, “then killed it and retrieved Langdale’s arm, but doctors were unable to reattach the limb.”

More on American Hunter's alligator adventure in the Florida swamps ...

From the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission - Apply for quota permits in June!

Outta' the Woods

Hunting with a dog from American Hunter magazine Every hunter knows you have a better chance of catching a monster buck off-guard during the first part of hunting season. That’s why many of us enjoy hunting the archery and muzzleloading gun seasons – and why we can’t miss opening weekend of the general gun season.

If you hunt public land, you should know that many of Florida’s wildlife management areas (WMAs) require a quota permit to hunt during archery, muzzleloading gun and all or part of the general gun season.

A quota is the maximum number of hunters allowed on a particular WMA. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s (FWC) Quota Hunt Program prevents overcrowding on such areas and provides quality hunts. Quotas also help control game harvests. The FWC sets quotas based on an area’s size, habitat, game populations and regulations.

More on Florida's quota hunting permits ...

Top Shot favorite stops by Brownells/NRA luncheon to meet young shooters

Top Shot favorite Gabby Franco speaks to the Brownells/NRA Youth Shooting Sports Ambassadors at the 2013 SHOT Show in Las Vegas Las Vegas, Nevada - Gabriela “Gabby” Franco has been in high demand as of late. Not only is she a sought after NRA Certified Instructor in the Miami area, but she's also making personal appearances, serving as pistol instructor for local police departments and competing in a variety of tournaments. Probably not what she was expecting after finishing in the top six of History Channel's Top Shot competition … probably a lot more.

That is why we were so grateful to have her speak at the 2013 Brownells/NRA Youth Shooting Sports Ambassadors luncheon at this year's SHOT Show. With parents, chaperons and industry representatives gathered round, Gabby took to the podium and explained how shooting helped focus the truly important aspects of life.

More on Gabby Franco's speech to the Brownells/NRA Youth Shooting Sports Ambassadors ...

Junior ROTC Marksmanship Team takes top honors at the Navy Nationals Marksmanship Competition

Oviedo High School's ALL GIRL Naval JROTC Marksmanship Team - National Naval Champs
Oviedo High School's ALL GIRL JROTC Marksmanship Team wins the Navy Nationals Marksmanship Competition.

Scott Clark does a lot of work for the NRA down in Florida. In addition to being a Certified NRA Instructor, Refuse to be a Victim Counselor and Level 1 Rifle Coach, he devotes his "free time" to area youth shooting sports programs.

Earlier this week, he sent us the following on one of those youth shooting programs — the Oviedo High School Naval Junior ROTC Marksmanship Team.

Oviedo, Florida - The Oviedo High School NJROTC Marksmanship Team took top honors at the Navy Nationals Marksmanship Competition in Anniston, Alabama.

More on Oviedeo High School's win at the Navy Nationals Marksmanship tournament...

More than 2 million feral hogs throughout 35 states leaving destruction in their path

hog hunting Doug Howlett takes you to the top Hog Hunting spots in these United States ... courtesy of American Hunter magazine.

Hog Hunting U.S.A.
Taking down hogs is one of the fastest growing, most exciting and most necessary types of hunting today. Here are five top locations for the best action.

The availability of specialized firearms, ammunition, gear and even websites and magazines all point to the fact that hog hunting is becoming big business. With rambling hordes of porkers now found in 35 states and with an estimated 2 million in the South alone, the destruction these heavy critters are wreaking across their range is extensive. Hogs uproot crop fields and yards and destroy habitat that must be shared with a broad range of other species including wild turkeys and deer. Worse, there doesn’t seem to be any end in sight to their spread. Experts believe it is simply a matter of time until hogs are found in every state in the lower 48.

More on American Hunters top Hog Hunting locations...

Years after attending Youth Education Summit, alum remains active in community

2011 NRA Youth Education Summit participant Amanda Krpan

Fairfax, Virginia - 2011 Youth Education Summit participant Amanda Krpan had an amazing experience at the week long educational experience here in Washington D.C.

When we checked in with the Florida native last year, she was still very active in her community and had just taught the Eddie Eagle GunSafe Program to over 200 Cub Scouts.

Well, she's at it again. Amanda brought Eddie's important message to a brand new group of Cub Scouts and couldn't wait to share the experience with us:

I hope all is well with you and the other YES staff! I know you all are probably hard at work getting ready for this years YES program and I thought I would let you guys know what I did this past weekend!

Saturday Feb 2, I went to Melrose, Florida to teach Cub Scouts at “Buc Tuocs” gun safety with Eddie Eagle, just like last year. The directors liked the program so much they asked me to come back and do it again this year!

We did seven sessions of the program again, but what I found wonderful was that the scouts who went through the program last year remembered Eddie and his message. The kids loved him and wanted to volunteer to be my helpers this time around when we role played with the skits.

More on Youth Education Summit alum introduces Cub Scouts to Eddie Eagle ...

Matt, Jessie, and four-time NPSC champion Robert Vadasz go looking for tarpon off the Florida Coast

Fairfax, Virginia - For this next Friends of NRA memory we're almost going back to the beginning. Episode 2 of the first season saw Matt and Jessie head down south to Florida to pay a visit to US Border Patrol Agent Robert Vadasz. Back in early 2011 Vadasz only had two NRA National Police Shooting Championship titles to his name, but since then he has added two more.

More favorite moments from Friends of NRA tv...

First Club Champion Challenge for Tropical Sport Shooting Association takes place in Florida

NRA's first Club Champion Challenge at the Tropical Sport Shooting Association

Ft. Lauderdale, Florida - An NRA Club Champion Challenge took place this month at the Tropical Sport Shooting Association (TSSA) in Ft. Lauderdale. Known as south Florida’s largest defensive shooting club, the competition took place at the Markham Park Target Range in Weston, Florida.

"It's a fun and exciting way for shooters to find out who's the best shot in the club," said NRA Competitive Shooting's John Parker. "The Club Champion Challenge includes all ages, skill levels and best of all ... the awards are provided by the NRA."

More on our Florida Club Champion Challenge ...

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