The National Police Shooting Championships is often associated with pistol marksmanship. However, there is a smaller and less recognized match that has been a part of NPSC since before the move to Alberquerque from Jackson, Mississippi. That match is competitive shotgun.

“About half of the competitors at NPSC compete in the shotgun competition, but I think the number of participants will increase as people hear about it being an option,” said Tim Pawol, NRA Board member and Shotgun Referee. The shotgun competition’s rules and scoring are independent of the scoring and rules that govern the national pistol competition. The course of fire for the shotgun competition is 5 rounds of buckshot fired at 4 targets at the 15 and 20 yard line, and 5 rounds of slugs fired at one target at the 25 and 50 yard line.

“The shotgun is important because it is issued to officers in most police departments and is an option in terms of fire power that falls between the carbine and the standard issued sidearm," Pawol told "As for the role of the shotgun here at NPSC, the match is a great deal of fun."

Dwight Van Horn

NRAblog first met Board Member Dwight Van Horn at the 2008 National Police Shooting Championships. Van Horn has served as Chief Referee since the Nationals moved to Albuquerque in 2006. When we heard the former Chief Referee of NPSC was unable to make this year's matches, we figured something important was in the works.

Sure enough, Van Horn is currently serving his country as a contractor in Baghdad, Iraq. But don't think he's not staying up-to-date with the programs of the NRA: "Reading along with the NPSC coverage has helped to ease the withdrawal," Van Horn e-mailed NRAblog in the middle of the Championships.

The way Van Horn describes it, his appointment as Chief Referee was a natural progression: Competitor, Champion, Referee, Chief Referee. And now, from half the world away, spectator. Van Horn plans to don the stripes again next year for the 2010 National Police Shooting Championships, but we didn't let him get away that easily! We got the scoop on just what he's up to -- and when we can expect to see him again.

“They were looking for an experienced firearm examiner to come over here and work in the joint expedition forensics facilities,” Van Horn said. He describes his current location as a crime lab, “limited, though, compared to the capabilities we have in the States.”


Thanks to Phil Schreier for the following photos and report:


The Armed Forces Foundation of Washington DC, established 2001, arranged for NRA Board Members and staff to serve dinner to the troops this evening at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland.

Led by NRA Secretary Major E. J. Land Jr, USMC (RET) and 7 members of the NRA Board of Directors, the group arrived at Navy Med around 5 pm and served a steady stream of wounded warriors, their families and hospital staff for two hours. Board members chatted with soldiers and handed out plates piled high with barbeque chicken and pork, potato salad and coleslaw. 


Texas NRA Field Rep Jack Cannon has a neat item being auctioned off by one of his chapters this fall.

Big Bend Friends of NRA has been holding banquets for nearly 10 years, but this past year they really headed for higher ground. Located in the middle of the West Texas Mountains, the entire group, led by Dr. Dan Petrosky, went out to hit some larger goals.

This year's banquet featured the first-ever completely sold out banquet in their history. More than 250 people crowded into the Alpine Civic Center to enjoy a night of fun and fundraising. When the dust had settled, they had not only sold out of dinner tickets, but had also sold out of every game they had going and finished the night with nearly $22,000.00 raised for The NRA Foundation.


Earlier this week, NRAblog sat down with NRA Second Vice President James W. Porter, II at the Long Range High Power Championships in Camp Perry, Ohio.

When did you get your start in the NRA?

I was elected to the board for the first time about twenty years ago. Then there was a break of service for a few years, but since 1997 my service has been consecutive.

NRA Second Vice President James Porter Sounds like a long time.

Well I was sort of born into the NRA. Literally, it’s my family. My dad (Irvine C. Porter) was on the board and served as President in 1959-1960. I practically grew up in Camp Perry over the first 18 summers of my life. It was a wonderful group of people. Alice Bull and her family. The Lymans, Charlie, Wally, Big Charlie and Pearl. Mr. Whittington and everyone was here – all part of the NRA family.

They use to have a board meeting here during the national matches every summer. So you had most of the board members and most of the officials in the organization here. People like Harlan Carter. It was just a wonderful group. And an absolutely fabulous way for a youngster to grow up.

Back then the military was still running things. That meant mess hall grub - which was perfect for a kid like me. More

NRA Director of Competitive Shooting Mike Krei and NRA First Vice President David Keene

I sat down with NRA First Vice President David Keene (pictured on the right) yesterday while he visited one of the Long Range High Power competitions here at Camp Perry.

Is this your first visit to Camp Perry this year?

I was out for a day or so for Smallbore last year, but this is the first time I’ve been out here for the Long Range High Power matches.

And how does this compare to your Smallbore experience?

It was a lot hotter last year. I enjoy this forum, but everybody has a favorite discipline. Smallbore is more ritualized with all the gear that they wear. All I could think of was how they could shot that well in all that heat.

Doesn’t Smallbore usually have a younger crowd?

Yes, although they are getting younger people into High Power as well. And that’s the most important thing we can be doing. More

Stage 8 of the JP Rocky Mountain 3-Gun Competition is a combined rifle/shotgun course of fire set in and around the ruins of the old Van Houten Mines Company Store. This afternoon, top 3-gun shooters such as Andy Horner, Tate Moots, Dave Neth, Patrick Kelley, and the Army Marksmanship Unit's Daniel Horner and Robby Johnson took to Stage 8.

Competitors put their skills to test as they battled heavy winds during the long-range rifle shooting. The shotgun portion included stationary clay and steel targets, with two slug targets at the end of the stage. NRA Board Member Tom Gaines was on-site to see the action and spot long-range shots through his binoculars.

Take a look at the slideshow above to see some of the country's top 3-gunners at work.

The second day of the Professional Outdoor Media Association (POMA) Conference in  St. Louis, Missouri was packed with fantastic information and opportunities to meet those who cover the great outdoors. Capping off the evening was an NRA sponsored dinner where 1st Vice President David Keene highlighted the importance of their work as an effort to counter an increasingly hostile political climate.

"It's been said that successful tyrants make just about everything illegal and then enforce their laws inconsistently," he told the crowd. "We must be constantly vigilant that people have the right not only to own firearms but the means to participate in the activities that they love." 

NRA Board Smallbore Committee Chairman Bill Carter Earlier this week, NRAblog sat down with NRA Board Smallbore Committee Chairman Bill Carter.

When did you become Chairman of the NRA Smallbore Committee?

President Schmeits offered me the opportunity to serve as Chairman of the Smallbore Committee in June and I accepted.

So it just happened.

Just happened.

And your visit to Camp Perry?

Unfortunately, for me, it’s been a number of years since I’ve been to Perry and that’s exactly why I’m here – to spend as much time as possible with the competitors. Listen to what the have to say, take back to NRA headquarters what they have to say, share that with the Smallbore Rifle Committee and see what we can do to make this the best match we possibly can. More

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