Take mom out for a memorable Mother's Day at the range

Waiting for the Shotgun session to start at a Women on Target event

Centreville, Virginia - As is the tradition for us at NRA Headquarters, we'll be celebrating Mother's Day by attending Centreville's annual Women On Target® Instructional Shooting Clinic. Hosted by the Izaak Walton League of America, there'll be plenty of opportunities for the ladies to try their hand with rifles, pistols, muzzleloaders and shotguns.

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Find NRA events near you with the NRA app for Android

You asked for it, Android users. And the NRA listened.

Earlier this month we told you about the NRA app that can be used to find NRA near you to help find NRA Basic Firearms Training courses, NRA Business Alliance members, NRA-affiliated clubs & associations, Friends of NRA events, gun shows, places to shoot, and much more.

This app was available only on iOS devices, but is now available for Andriod platforms as well - free of charge.

Other great features of this app include viewing NRA News programming, where users can view archives or search videos by issue. You can also get feeds for the NRAblog, so you have quick access to our top stories wherever you are.

A Community section offers links to each division’s Facebook or Twitter page, plus a state-by-state rep finder. Users can also use the Take Action section to join the NRA, register to vote, donate or contact the NRA.

Download the free NRA app to your Android device today from Google Play or visit the iTunes store to get the app on your iPhone or iPad.

NRA Women on Target in Alaska

At the end of March in 2009, Larry Boyle of Alaska’s Firearms Education and Training oversaw an NRA Women On Target Instructional Shooting Clinic of rifle. As one might expect, there were plenty of ice, snow, mittens and scarfs to go around.

Women On Target Clinics create more opportunities for women to learn all about firearms, and to gain confidence in newly-acquired shooting skills. For information on how to a hold a clinic in your area, visit the Women on Target website or give them a call at (800) 861-1166.

NRA Women's Programs LogoWomen’s Programs Department is hosting training for women to become NRA Certified Pistol Instructors during the 2012 NRA Annual Meetings & Exhibits in St. Louis, Missouri from April 13-15, 2012 at the America’s Center.

This is an excellent opportunity to become part of the Female Pistol Instructor cadre and help train the thousands of women who are learning to shoot every year. With more women turning to the NRA annually for firearms training, female instructors play a crucial role in introducing them to the shooting sports.

“The NRA Women On Target® Instructional Shooting Clinic Program is incredibly successful and reached nearly 10,000 new women shooters in 2011,” said Diane Danielson, Women On Target® Program Coordinator. “We are fully committed to training more women instructors, not only helping meet the demand for NRA Certified Instructors, but showing women additional opportunities for developing and sharing their skills.”

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Developing more female NRA Certified Instructors has been a major goal of the Women's Programs Department these last few years. Many women want to learn to shoot and are looking for another woman to show them the ropes - that's where NRA's cadre of female instructors comes into play. Arizona's Amber Kunau recently joined that group, earning her certification as an NRA Certified Instructor. Amber shared her experience with NRAblog and explained what led her to get her certification and how she's using it to train others.

NRA Certified Instructor Amber Kunau Becoming an NRA Certified Instructor was something I had thought about frequently so when I saw classes listed at my local range (Rio Salado Sportsman’s Club) it seemed like the perfect time to jump in and get to work. I started with the Range Safety Officer (RSO) class done by Jim Neff of Generations Firearms in Mesa, Arizona. The RSO class taught by Jim was interactive, informative and fun. After the great experience I had in the RSO class, I knew that getting my instructor certification with Jim was going to be nothing less than a great experience and the knowledge I would take away would be invaluable to me as a firearms instructor. In fact, I enjoyed that class so much I signed up for several more and went on to get my instructor level training in Pistol, Personal Protection Inside The Home, and Personal Protection Outside The Home and still have upcoming instructor classes in my calendar for Rifle and Shotgun.

The biggest thing that I took away from these classes is that students learn by doing. A great instructor doesn’t just stand in front of the class and just talk. Instead, a great instructor gets the class involved in mock “real life” scenarios and great discussions which gets everyone thinking on their own and working hard for their certification. I also learned that a good attitude is an absolute necessity.

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Samantha Virk at the 2012 SHOT Show in Vegas
Samantha Virk readies for the onslaught of SHOT Show.
Las Vegas, Nevada -Looks can be deceiving.

When first meeting Samantha Virk, for example, you probably wouldn’t guess that she’s a professional hunter and guide. That is, until, you focus in on the boar tusks dangling from her neck. And then ask where she got them.

“I got them from the boar that did this,” she said pointing at a scar on her leg. “He gave me that as a souvenir so I took his tusks as another.”

And that’s not the first battle she’s won in the great outdoors.

Starting at an early age, Sam’s resume spans from fly-fishing in Utah to duck hunting in Arizona, bear hunting in Alaska and plains game in Zimbabwe. Recently, it’s the African side of adventure that’s been calling her most.

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Texas women bringing outdoor adventures to future generations

DIVAs at the 2012 SHOT Show in Las Vegas Las Vegas, Nevada - "Now its the time to be a woman. It use to be that men didn't want anything to do with women's events and now they're asking how many we're holding. It's wonderful."

Those are the words of one Judy Rhodes, Founder of DIVA … Women Outdoors Worldwide.

Based out of Dallas, Texas, Judy's decision to start DIVA (formerly known as Texas Women's Shooting Sports) back in 1991 came to her as a mission. After growing up on a Texas ranch, she began to realize that the tradition of female shooters and hunters was disappearing. As previous generations passed, the number of new recruits failed to replenish the field. It was time for action.

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Colorado blogger brings her family into hunting & the outdoors

Mia Anstine from Wolf Creek Outfitters Mia Anstine runs Wolf Creek Outfitters with her husband Hank. A constant source of hunting fun and information on the social media circuit, I had hoped to interview Mia during the 2012 SHOT Show. That never happened. Not to be deterred, I decided to employ the social media engine and perform that interview via Twitter.

Here's the transcript from yesterday's Twitterview:

Tell me about your first gun
I was 7 when I shot my first .22 pistol. But I got to shoot an Ouzzie when at 8! That's when I learned to love & respect firearms. My first gun that was "all my own" was/is a Winchester .270. I was 26 and decided I was going to put food on the table. Family & friends pitched in to buy it for my birthday!

Why the drive to put food on the table?
I got tired of pitching in for a side of beef and getting all the hamburger. I went hunting with dad and friends as a kid and always enjoyed it. But I wasn't allowed to hunt ... just the guys were. I helped field dress animals and pack them out. He's amazed by me now.

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Diane Danielson, our Female Instructor Development Coordinator, has some exciting news about an upcoming NRA Certified Pistol Instructor course just for women. With more women learning to shoot every year, we're looking for more women to become instructors. If you're in the Southwest, then consider attending this course later this month. And sorry, fellas. This one is just for the ladies.  

A female NRA Certified Pistol Instructor teaching a female student on NRAblog.com Are you going to SHOT Show? Are you looking for a way to extend your trip through the weekend following the show while the guys are playing golf? Or are you just looking to get away to Phoenix, AZ in January and spend some quality time at the range to become an NRA Certified Pistol Instructor? Join us at the Ben Avery Shooting Facility on January 20-22, 2012 for the next NRA Pistol Instructor Course for women – by women.

More and more women are registering for firearm training than ever before and it's a fact that they prefer to be taught by other women. If you feel you have the qualifications to become part of the growing number of Female Certified Pistol Instructors – come join us.

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