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Posts tagged “shooting

Boone and Crockett Introduces New President

MISSOULA, Mont. (Dec. 22, 2014) – A hunter, angler and businessman, Morrie Stevens Sr. of Saginaw, Mich., has been elected president of America’s first conservation organization, the Boone and Crockett Club.

For over 127 years, Club members have helped shape the scientific, educational, political, economic,social, technological and environmental forces affecting natural resource conservation.

Click here to visit Boone and Crockett online!As the Clubs 31st president, Stevens follows the tenure of Bill Demmer of Lansing, Mich., Stevens is chairman and CEO of Stevens Worldwide Van Lines headquartered in Saginaw. He is also involved in other nonprofit boards and is a member of Trout Unlimited, Pheasants Forever, Ducks Unlimited, Quality Deer Management, National Wild Turkey Federation, Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, Ruffed Grouse Society and the NRA.

“As a lifelong hunter-conservationist, Morrie has served the Club tirelessly in multiple capacities,” said outgoing president Demmer. “Morrie was instrumental in guiding the development of our conservation education programs and will be a powerful force continuing the Club’s legacy in wildlife conservation at the local, regional and national level.”

Before being elected president, Stevens served in various Club officer positions, most recently as executive vice president of conservation, which directs the Club’s endowed university professorship and research fellowship programs across the country. Being a graduate of Michigan State University, Stevens worked with other Club members in establishing the MSU Boone and Crockett endowed chair of wildlife conservation, which now will become the Michigan State University Boone and Crockett Quantitative Wildlife Center.

Stevens said, “Preserving our American hunting heritage is something very personal to me. I grew up on a farm in rural Michigan on the Tittabawassee River, where at an early age I enjoyed hunting, fishing and trapping in the ’50s. What I learned being outdoors has served me well. Today we simply have too many obstacles for our kids to be outdoors, and something very special will be lost if we can’t remove these barriers. Of greatest concern is who will be our future conservationists? Our wildlife and the habitats that support them will need all the advocates they can get. Personal experiences in the outdoors are therefore foundational to future wildlife conservation efforts.”

He added, “Equally important is the focus of scientific management to supersede the more recent trends of judicial management. This begins with educating the next generation of conservation leaders. We also need to continually promote the shared use of public lands and promote good stewardship of private lands. There will need to be an increased level of collaboration of like-minded groups and innovative policies to address these challenges.”

Stevens concluded, “I can assure you the Boone and Crockett Club will do its part. We will maintain the Club’s historic legacy of thought leadership in promoting good government policy as it relates to wild game and its habitat, and sportsmen’s access to these resources. We will continue to seek and distribute new knowledge to guide critical decisions. We will also continue to educate the public and help them understand the historic role and contributions of the hunting and angling community in promoting and funding conservation of our wildlife and public lands for everyone’s enjoyment.”

In addition to the B&C university program at Michigan State, similar programs are established at the University of Montana, Texas A&M and research fellowships at Texas A&M Kingsville, University of Wisconsin at Stevens Point and Oregon State University.

About the Boone and Crockett Club  

North America’s first hunting and conservation organization, the Boone and Crockett Club was founded by Theodore Roosevelt in 1887. Its mission is to provide the leadership, stewardship and education needed to promote the conservation and management of wildlife, especially big game and its habitat, to preserve and encourage hunting and to maintain the highest ethical standards of fair chase and sportsmanship. Join us at

Blackhawk! Sportster™ TraverseTrack™ Bipod!

Finally, a hunter-friendly bipod!

By Kevin Reese

Click here to visit!The obstinate Texas sun forced me further into the shaded recesses of an outcropping of oak trees along the edge of a field of coastal grass. Stretched before me was some 50 acres of heavily rooted soil with isolated clumps of grass, certainly too few to bail and monetize. The population of feral hogs in the area generating this damage had only been defined by the landowner as “thick”.

Hours later, as the sun’s oppression finally submitted to dropping temperatures and a darkening sky, a sounder of hogs flooded into the field on my left. I steadied behind my Smith & Wesson MP15T Tactical 5.56 AR-15 topped by an Aimpoint H34S Hunter red dot scope as the hogs continued to rush toward an area of the field quite a distance to my right. As they crossed in front of me, I attempted to plant my reticle on any hog offering a shot opportunity. Unfortunately, none of the hogs stopped, even after I noisily attempted to capture their attention long enough to get a shot. They ignored me and continued to traverse from left to right.

In the end, none of the hogs offered an opportunity; worse, when I attempted to track them from left to right, the legs of my bipod bulldozed the soil, prohibiting me from getting the shot opportunity I was after. I moved the bipod into another position on my right and attempted to acquire a target once more but they continued, making an ethical shot impossible.

I’m not the only increasingly frustrated hunter using restrictive bipods. As a hog hunter and hog hunting seminar instructor, I hear and read of failed hunts often and routinely meet others hoping for an alternative. Personally, I’ve spent hours searching for a swivel bipod  only to find that “swivel” simply means the vertical pivot that allows a rifle to be held vertically straight or rested on its side at an angle. By in large, I’ve found that “Swivel” DOES NOT mean the ability to swing or track targets moving from left to right – the very functionality we require as hunters using bipods.

As important as functionality, I need a bipod to be durable and dependable; in short, trustable. As a Special Hog Weapons and Tactics (SHWAT) Pro Staff Hunter and Professional Outdoor Media Association (POMA) member, I am demanding of the equipment I use. The extreme rigors I put gear through means I have to trust those products to survive my pursuits and perform flawlessly afterwards. The good news for me… and you is that OpticsPlanet offers a bipod that meets those demands – the Blackhawk! Sportster™ TraverseTrack™ Bipod.

Click here to visit!

The Blackhawk! Sportster™ TraverseTrack™ Bipod is the real deal! Like most sitting and kneeling position bipods, it’s adjustable to fit your sitting or kneeling height from 13.5 to 23 inches. Like many other bipods, it also includes adjustability on a vertical pivot but unlike some, you can lock down the vertical pivot position. While a vertical pivot is where some of best bipods end, it’s just the beginning for the Blackhawk! Sportster™ TraverseTrack™ Bipod I received last week. True to its name, a second swivel axis allows for horizontal rotation. This means I can effortlessly track and lead targets on a horizontal plane. This function would have equated to hogs on the ground instead of another missed opportunity if I had ordered it a few days earlier!

Click here to visit!More than vertical and horizontal adjustability, I love the Rapid-Adjust Lever Lock feature and easy installation. Even better for long predator and hog hunting excursions, especially in run-and-gun situations, this lightweight 18-ounce bipod is an easy tote. Did I know it was there? Sure. Did it bother me? No. My carry throughout the day was an easy haul.

Other positives I found on this bipod included easy installation and hunt-proven all-metal construction, spring-retractable tubular legs with slip resistant rubber feet, perfect for quick target acquisition on uneven terrain.

The only “con” (term used lightly) I found with the Blackhawk! Sportster™ TraverseTrack™ Bipod was in the tubular legs. I would love to see ribbed lower legs that further assist in ensuring level shooting; however, as a final thought, I can honestly say I have not experienced any negative consequence related to not having the ribs – it’s simply a personal preference. It certainly would never keep me from using this particular bipod.

Click here to visit!I spent some trigger time with the Blackhawk! Sportster™ TraverseTrack™ Bipod this weekend. Refreshing doesn’t begin to convey my excitement over this bipod. I engaged numerous targets throughout a horizontal plane without adjusting the bipod legs or my own body. I also tracked numerous critters during a sit in the woods; however, shot opportunities eluded me – not as a fault of this truly incredible bipod! The Blackhawk! Sportster™ TraverseTrack™ Bipod has taken its rightful place as my bipod of choice for future pursuits and I look forward to making good on those missed opportunities in the near future.

Team Smith & Wesson Crowns Three National Champions at IDPA Nationals

Industry Contact: Matt Rice Blue Heron Communications (800) 654-3766

Team Members Jerry Miculek, Josh Lentz and Randi Rogers Claim Titles at 2013 Match

Click here to visit Smith & Wesson online!SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (October 10, 2013) — Smith & Wesson Corp. announced today that Team Smith & Wesson members accounted for three national championships at the recent 2013 International Defensive Pistol (IDPA) Nationals in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Teammates Jerry Miculek, Josh Lentz and Randi Rogers each dominated their respective divisions, outpacing the nearest competitors by a combined 197 seconds. Claiming titles in the Enhanced Service Revolver (ESR), Stock Service Revolver (SSR) and High Lady divisions, Team Smith & Wesson members look to continue the momentum at the upcoming BUG Nationals taking place at the Smith & Wesson Shooting Sports Center this November.

Competing in the ESR Division, it has become a common sight to see Champion Jerry Miculek outpacing competitors with his trusted Smith & Wesson Model 625 revolver. This year, Miculek once again turned in another stellar performance by winning 12 of the 17 stages of fire. With a final time of 294.66 seconds, Miculek added another IDPA Championship to his lengthy list of accolades. After the match concluded, Miculek went on to compete in the FNH USA 3-Gun Championship, where he exchanged his revolver for an M&P pistol and an M&P rifle to compete in the Open Division. Once again, Miculek ran away with the match, winning by more than 10-percentage points en route to the division title.

A last minute entry into this year’s IDPA Nationals, fellow team member Josh Lentz helped Smith & Wesson deliver a one-two punch in the revolver divisions by winning the SSR National Championship. Lentz, who is ranked as a Distinguished Master in the SSR Division, used a Smith & Wesson Model 686 to win 5 of the 17 stages of fire. A multiple SSR Division champion, Lentz will no doubt be a favorite in the upcoming BUG Nationals hosted by Smith & Wesson.

The third national champion title was awarded to the newest member of Team Smith & Wesson, Randi Rogers. Rogers, who finished fourth in the Stock Service Pistol (SSP) Division and 11th overall, secured the High Lady title with a final time of 262.59 seconds. With her first National Championship secured under the Team Smith & Wesson banner, it will likely only be a matter of months before she helps elevate the team standing with another championship performance.

In other division wins, Brandon Wright took home the Enhanced Service Pistol (ESP) title using an M&P Pro pistol. While not a member of Team Smith & Wesson, Brandon’’s win accounted for three division championship titles using Smith & Wesson firearms.

“On behalf of Smith & Wesson, I would like to congratulate each of our sponsored shooters on another terrific match,” said Paul Pluff, Director of Marketing Communications for Smith & Wesson. “Winning three national championships in such a prestigious event is a tremendous accomplishment. The performances by Jerry, Josh and Randi are a direct result of their constant pursuit of perfection. We are extremely proud of their accomplishments as well as that of Brandon Wright who used a Smith & Wesson M&P pistol to earn his national championship. We remain dedicated to supplying all of our team members as well as other competitors with the high quality, competition-ready firearms that help create champions.”

About Smith & Wesson Smith & Wesson Holding Corporation (NASDAQ Global Select: SWHC) is a U.S.-based leader in firearm manufacturing and design, delivering a broad portfolio of quality firearms, related products and training to the consumer, law enforcement, and military markets. The company’s brands include Smith & Wesson®, M&P® and Thompson/Center Arms™. Smith & Wesson facilities are located in Massachusetts and Maine. For more information on Smith & Wesson, call (800) 331-0852  or log on to

Crosman’s Benjamin Rogue .357 Air Rifle

Wild, Wooly and Ready for Hogs, Deer and More!

By Kevin Reese

Click here to visit Crosman online!

Is an air rifle enough to stop that next bruiser boar or buck of a lifetime? A quick trip back to the Lewis and Clark expedition would answer that question through proven results; in fact, their single Girandoni air rifle is considered by many to be the REAL gun that won the west. The .46-caliber Girandoni fired up to 40 shots on a single charge and the tube magazine held up to 22 rounds that could be emptied in less than 30 seconds.

Girandoni Air Rifle courtesy of the U.S. Army

August 30, 1803 – “Left Pittsburgh this day at 11 ock with a party of 11 hands 7 of which are soldiers, a pilot and three young men on trial they having proposed to go with me throughout the voyage. Arrived at Bruno’s Island 3 miles below halted a few minutes. Went on shore and being invited on by some of the gentlemen present to try my airgun which I had purchased brought it on shore charged it and fired myself seven times fifty-five yards with pretty good success.”

(Lewis and Clark Journals, Volume 1)

Lewis and Clark’s journals, comprised of 13 volumes and more than a million words, refer to the Girandoni air rifle 39 times. While they also had 22 muzzleloaders it was the Girandoni air rifle they turned to repeatedly to demonstrate superior fire power to Native Americans, a move more than anything to protect the contents of their keel vessel.

While the expedition only had one Girandoni, tribe leaders could and did assume the keel vessel was loaded down with them and the thought of 38 men firing 22 .46-caliber balls accurately in less than 30 seconds was quite intimidating.

The rifle was also used effectively for big game hunting and was the perfect answer for repeatable fire without compromising powder supplies needed for the 22 muzzleloaders. Merriweather Lewis’ use of the Girandoni rifle nearly single handedly assured safe passage and charting of the west for future expansion and certainly proved its worth in hunting.

Check out this informative video about the Girandoni’s Air Rifle’s rich history from NRA-History:

Today, people continue to depend on air rifles and other firearms to provide for their families’ sustenance, including big game. The good news, however, is that unlike the 1,500 pumping repetitions required to hand-fill the Girandoni, today’s charging systems aren’t nearly as arduous.

While smaller caliber air rifles may operate off of factory sealed disposable tanks or age-old hand-pumps, high-powered, big-game-oriented rifles like my personal favorite, Crosman’s Benjamin Rogue .357-caliber Precision Air Rifle, are easily charged up to 3,000-psi with a 3,000- to 3,500-psi scuba-style air tank.

The Benjamin Rogue also does not look anything like Lewis’ Girandoni. While both are considered PCP systems, the Rogue’s patent-pending ePCP™ technologyePCP™ technologyePCP™ technologyePCP™ technology means more versatility and increased power while the patent-pending eVALVE system makes for more efficient use of the air charge via precision, user-selected distribution options. Shooters not only have some great ammunition choices to make, including round-nosed, flat-nosed and Nosler’s eXTREME ballistic tip bullets, they can even use their own cast .357-caliber pellets.

Click here to visit Crosman online!The Rogue’s EPiC™ LED display and selection buttons allow configuration of key ballistic elements including medium-high foot-pounds of energy/velocity options and bullet weights of medium (up to 145 grains) and high (over 145 grains). The rifle even includes manual mode setting. In manual mode, the shooter can calibrate air pressure and valve-release delay to experiment with ballistics and achieve optimum performance from their favorite heart-stopping pellet!

Click here to visit Crosman online!While the Benjamin Rogue can make for a tough carrier over long distances, Crosman’s Center-Point 4-16x44mm riflescope does shave that walk down a tad and a picatinny rail system allows for added accessories to increase fit, form and function according to individual needs.

On the Benjamin Rogue air rifle I worked with, I used the picatinny rail to mount interchangeable sitting and kneeling bipods and a Hawglite Sabre high-intensity red LED tactical lighting system that gets me out to well over 100 yards; however, I try to keep larger animals like coyotes, deer and hogs within 75 yards.

Click here to visit Crosman online!

Nearly all states allow hunting with air guns in some form or another; check your state regulations for game specific applications, especially before chasing larger animals like deer, hogs, bear and other traditionally recognized big game animals normally taken with firearms or archery equipment. Here in Texas, the Benjamin Rogue .357 is tough enough to take down the biggest boars in the woods and often quiet enough to anchor more than one of those pesky, yet tasty eating bruisers! That means deer also are easy prey for the Rogue – pick your poison!

Imagine the buzz circulating your deer or hog hunting camp when you drop the hammer on your next success story with an air rifle! The Benjamin Rogue .357 Air Rifle is more than enough to get the job done for you and is by far my favorite air rifle offering to date. Check out these happy hunters!

Ed Schultz and Chip Hunnicut take a great hog with the Benjamin Rogue .357 Air Rifle - Photo courtesy of Ed Schultz

Chip Hunnicut take a great velvet buck with the Benjamin Rogue .357 Air Rifle - Photo courtesy of Chip Hunnicutt

ALMOST All the Right Stuff – What I wasn’t so excited about…

Part of field testing some amazing products is really isolating opportunities for improvement. While I feel Crosman really has something special in the Benjamin Rogue, again, it’s my current favorite, hands down, there are two areas of improvement worth mentioning.

First, loading the magazine with pellets and subsequently loading that magazine into the rifle’s action took quite a bit of practice. While loading the magazine with pellets I dropped my fair share (In Crosman’s defense the instruction manual warned me to cover the opposite opening with my finger).

Second, while there is a picatinny rail located at the bottom of the handguard more rails on the sides of the handguard would be a great addition. The lower rail could be used for a bipod while side rails could accommodate systems like the Hawglite Goblin or Crimson Trace CMR-201 Rail Master laser; product reviews for another day. With one rail accessories are either stacked or not added. This may be a great opportunity to offer an array of handguards.

Final Thoughts

Part of my fascination with air rifles is simply nostalgia. Time on an air rifle reminds me of time spent shooting with my dad… and even my mother; she’s a heck of a shot, too! With my son, that air rifle legacy continues. His aversion to loud noises, a product of sensory integration, means that shooting air rifles even offers some therapeutic benefits in that he gets to enjoy shooting while avoiding the report of larger firearms, bothersome to him even with hearing protection. At some point, conditioning should resolve his aversion but we choose to eat sensory integration as we would an elephant. Whether shooting a .17-caliber or my wild and wooly Benjamin Rogue .357, Jacob is ready to go.

Hunt hard, hunt often and consider taking the Crosman Benjamin Rogue .357 Air Rifle on your next hunting adventure!

Learn more about Lewis and Clark’s incredible expedition at 

Learn more about the Girandoni Air Rifle visit and type Girandoni Air Rifle in the search field.

Visit,, and to learn more about the Benjamin Rogue .357 and other great shooting and hunting accessories. ~ How to Prep for a Big Game Hunt

Click here to visit!

The Cold HEARD Truth about WildEar!

Bowhunter’s hearing amplification with shooting sports protection!

By Kevin Reese

As a tinnitus sufferer, compliments of the U.S. Marine Corps, and avid hunter, hearing has been a significant hindrance to my success in the field. While many count on hearing, sight and smell on the hunt, I have lost much of the second most critical sense we carry into the woods.

So, what’s a frustrated hunter to do? I had heard great things about the quality and customer service at WildEar so I picked up the phone and ordered the Master Series Hearing Enhancement System (HES). What a Godsend! Brad Esson sent me an information and fitting instruction kit and I scheduled an appointment with my local audiologist. I left the audiologist’s office with impressions in hand and mailed them back to WildEar. Within two weeks I had a package waiting at my front door.

What’s in the Box?

Upon opening the shipping box I found a beautifully crafted wood box with my name carved into the lid; I was immediately impressed! Opening the box I found every component neatly displayed including my WildEar Hearing Enhancement Devices (HED), a WildEar adjustable lanyard, extra plugs, a cleaning brush, identification card, extra size 13 batteries, instruction manual and an extremely nice leather carrying pouch.

After a quick read through the instructions and becoming familiar with button locations, I was ready to give my new “WildEars” a whirl. After installing the battery in the first device I immediately inserted it in my ear and continued installing the battery in the other device; while I did so, the left device cycled through a series of tones confirming that I had inserted the battery correctly and the unit was now active. After installing the battery in the second unit and firmly inserting it into my ear canal I heard the same tone; both units were active and appeared to be working properly. Once the units were powered on amplification of sounds was immediate and because the HED was created from personal impressions the fit was incredibly comfortable.

Success, One Ear at a Time!

A major benefit to WildEar’s HES is adjustability. This is the first system I’ve had the pleasure of using that incorporates comprehensive adjustability. WildEar HED’s offer four presets and numerous volume levels to optimize hearing FOR EACH EAR! Using the various presets and volume levels I quickly achieved optimum hearing; in fact, after customizing the settings and recording them on a piece of paper (I now keep folded in the leather pouch for reference) the variance in hearing from one ear to the other I had experienced for years became negligible.

From Every Direction or the Right Direction?

Another benefit was the ability to discern noise direction. Experimenting with other devices I noticed difficulty in ascertaining which direction noises were coming from. Using WildEar’s HED’s I had no problem identifying the source direction of various sounds; a critical element to hearing in the woods! In a matter of minutes I had leveled my outdoor playing field with a keen hearing ability I presume rivals that of my prey.

Hearing to Hearing Protection: From A – Z!

My Master Series HED’s were designed for a diverse range of outdoor activities including both firearm shooting and bowhunting. When rifle or pistol hunting, or during a day on the shooting range, I simply insert the vent plugs into the vent holes. The plugs seal the vent holes preventing outside noise from entering the devices. Noise is suppressed when it reaches a potentially dangerous level. My HED’s only suppressed the firearm blast then returned to hearing amplification.

While bowhunting I remove the plugs. The open vent holes allow for natural noise and air to infiltrate, eliminating any semblance of feeling “plugged up”. It’s worth noting that at any time you transition from bowhunting to shooting a firearm you must remember to install the vent plugs!

The Cold HEARD Truth!

I never realized how much I was missing the field. WildEar HED’s gave me a new lease on my bowhunting life. Now I used them for more than outdoor pursuits. Late in the evening you can now find me watching a couple of my favorite television shows… without subtitles!

The quality of workmanship was readily apparent and proven through use. WildEar accounted for every minute detail. The presentation of the product in the customized box seemed to demonstrate just how much WildEar focuses on satisfying customers; I felt like I was important to them. WIldEar has earned my trust, endorsement and recommendation. Well done, WildEar, well done!

The only con I observed is the inability to power off the devices without removing the batteries. A power button on each device would be a great addition; handling batteries while 20 feet up in a treestand can be frustrating. Considering that minor inconvenience, WildEar still earns top honors with me. I expect my WildEar HED’s will be an important part of my outdoor gear for years to come!

Many thanks to WildEar for offering premium, dependable and diverse HED’s at prices most bowhunters who take their hearing seriously can afford!

Check out WildEar’s array of premium hearing enhancement and suppression products at

Hunt hard, hunt often.


Tunica, MS – The Professional Outdoor Media Association(POMA) inducted the National Rifle Association (NRA) into POMA’s elite group of Diamond Cornerstone honorees. The announcement was made during the NRA dinner at POMA’s annual business conference in Tunica, Miss.
The Diamond Cornerstone Awardrecognizes those who have played a key role in POMA’s growth and maturation into the traditional outdoor sports industry’s premier communications organization.

J.R. Robbins, managing editor of with Laurie Lee Dovey, POMA CEO

“The National Rifle Association is the reason POMA exists,” said POMA CEO Laurie Lee Dovey during the presentation. “In 2004, when the NRA’s right to free speech was infringed, a group of outdoor industry communicators gathered and determined the need for a professional communications organization that would honor and protect the Constitutional rights of traditional outdoor sports industry companies, organizations, professionals and journalists to speak freely. POMA was born.
“From the beginning, the NRA stood by and with POMA, supported our efforts, our beliefs and our members. The NRA is more than the reason we are here, the NRA’s participation is one of the reasons POMA is considered the premier communications organization in the industry.”
John Robbins, managing editor of, accepted the award.
“This is a real surprise and a real honor,” said Robbins. “POMA members number some of the most talented outdoor writers, photographers and TV hosts in the business. They are committed to defending the Second Amendment, and to advancing hunting and the shooting sports. Their contributions are invaluable and we are proud to support them.”
POMA’s Diamond Cornerstone Award, founded in July 2005 immediately after POMA was launched, recognized the Safari Club International’s (SCI) and the Outdoor Channel’s (OC) contributions to the formation of the organization.
“POMA could not have made the leap from vision to reality without the contributions of the SCI and the Outdoor Channel,” explained then POMA Chairman/President Betty Lou Fegely. “They were integral to POMA’s launch.”
While the idea of a new media organization was being investigated by a steering committee, SCI provided disenfranchised media members with a way to stay in the communication loop. SCI developed the Professional Outdoor Writer’s Registry (POWR) database and kept POWR members informed of the progress of the steering committee.
When the steering committee determined the need for a new media organization, both the Outdoor Channel and the SCI provided POMA with initial funds to launch the organization. The SCI also promoted the POMA launch to all POWR database members.
“SCI and OC have been great friends to POMA,” said Laurie Lee Dovey, then POMA Secretary/Treasurer. “They truly are the cornerstones upon which the POMA foundation was built.”
Since 2005, POMA’s Board of Directors has inducted several other key partners into the Diamond Cornerstone group. Each recipient has played a key role in POMA’s growth and maturation into the traditional outdoor sports industry’s premier communications organization.
2005 — Outdoor Channel and
Safari Club International
2010 — National Shooting Sports Foundation, Mossy Oak and Brownells
2012 — National Rifle Association

POMA Mission

To foster excellence in communications at all levels, help members build their businesses, connect media and industry, promote fair and honest communication of the traditional outdoor sports and conservation stories, and mentor the next generation of traditional outdoor sports communicators.

More information about POMA and the Diamond Cornerstone Award is available by calling 814-254-4719 or emailing


About the NRA

Established in 1871, the National Rifle Association is America’s oldest civil rights and sportsmen’s group. Four million members strong, NRA continues to uphold the Second Amendment and advocates enforcement of existing laws against violent offenders to reduce crime. The Association remains the nation’s leader in firearm education and training for law-abiding gun owners, law enforcement and the armed services.
For more information, contact:

TOP Shooter Targets Cancer for Michael Spellman Benefit

Top Shot’s Chris Reed’s Tactical .308 Masterpiece Shoots for Spellman’s Cure!

 By Kevin Reese

Cancer is a monster. I can scarcely count the number of times someone has reminded me that if I don’t have anything good to say, don’t say anything. So, out of respect I keep quiet on many fronts; however, cancer is not one of them. Cancer is not good, productive, inspiring, kind, peaceful or respectful. The purest definition is simply “monster”! Cancer is not good; it is counterproductive, frightening, nasty, intrusive and certainly not a respectful of one’s time, resources or physiology. I really didn’t have an opinion on it growing up. It never hit close to home, at least until my pop was diagnosed in March, 2011.

Five months after his diagnosis, we lost him. There were no words left unsaid, for that I felt blessed; however, if wishing upon a star was possible, I would have asked for two; one, to spend more time with him and two, that we could have caught it earlier. Fortunately we were afforded the great blessing our spending our childhood through our young adult years, appreciating his dry wit, coy smiles, booming laughter and occasional look that always told us we were in big trouble! By the time he became ill, we were mature enough to handle the news and progress through the illness from start to finish; many don’t get that time with their loved one. Still, many others do get to experience that when the battle is won here on Earth.

I feel blessed in some small way to have experienced it from the perspective of voice. All too often we feel we have no voice when cast into cancer’s downward spiral, but there is a light at the end of that tunnel! Losing someone close to us to cancer is not the end, it’s the beginning; the beginning of using our voice, our finances and our encouragement to make a difference for others battling their monsters. Michael Spellman is the OTHER I wanted to share with all of you.

Michael Spellman’s storybegan long before I heard about it. While on a recent turkey hunt I took a call from good friend Chris Reed, winner of History Channel’s Top Shot, Season Two. After venting about a tom I had missed earlier that morning, I asked Chris what he was up to. Chris quieted a bit, “I’m building a rifle for a friend of mine, Michael Spellman. He’s another friend of mine battling cancer with a great wife and kids. I’m building a special one for him. We’re going to raffle it off and donate the proceeds to his fight. We need to keep him here to raise his kids. Can you help get the word out?”

Chris couldn’t see my reaction but I hope he sensed it through the air waves, I was beaming. Here was a chance to give my voice in chorus with so many others to help a good father win his fight and somehow reconcile the loss of my own; make our loss a purposeful, positive blessing for great kids, a strong woman and a remarkable man. Asking how I could help spawned this article. I can help by telling ALL OF YOU that you CAN make a difference!

Chris has pulled all of his tricks out of the bag to build this amazing rifle, and you can own it! A raffle is currently underway for a modest $5 per ticket. All of the proceeds will be donated to Spellman’s fight. Recently Reed’s masterpiece was displayed at the 141st NRA Annual Meeting and Exhibits, in St. Louis, Missouri. While those who want to make a difference have purchased raffle tickets in person, tickets may be purchased online at

What you stand to win…

Beyond the obvious, winning the fight against a monster with Spellman and many others, you may win the masterpiece Reed not only designed but personally assembled!

Here are the specs you’ve been waiting for:

Remington 700 SPS Tactical AAC-SD

  • Caliber.308 Win w/ 20” Heavy Barrel with 5/8-24 Threaded Muzzle
  • Accepts AAC and 5/8-24 Threaded Flash Hiders, Muzzle Brakes and Suppressors
  • 1 in 10-inch Rate of Twist for increased Bullet Stability
  • X-Mark Pro Externally Adjustable Trigger Set at 3 1/2 pounds
  • NIGHTFORCE 5.5-22×50 NXS Scope w/ illuminated Reticle and Zero Stop Turrets
  • McRee’s Precision Modular Folding TMAG Stock w/ Detachable Box Magazine
  • Starlight – Hard Sided, Watertight, Chemical Resistant, Military Grade Gun Case

CNC precision engraving lets you know just how special this rifle really is; engraved on the left side of the receiver is “Outlaw Custom guns by Chris Reed” with serial # 0001 while “SHOOT FOR A CURE” is engraved on the opposite side, reminding you that your help, along with many others, truly makes a difference!

The rifle will be raffled off at Outlaw Sporting Goods grand opening celebration on July 4, in Greenwood, Mississippi. The winner does not need to be present to win. The lucky winner can pick up the Spellman rifle at Outlaw Sporting Goods or have it shipped to the FFL dealer of their choice.

Feel like you haven’t made a difference? This is your chance to make one! Don’t wait. Get your tickets at


Michael’s Story as published on

Michael Spellman is a lifetime resident of Mississippi and has spent his entire life in rural Carroll County. The 1994 Graduate of Carroll Academy led his high school football team, as quarterback, to its one and only state championship victory. He has also protected his community as Chief Deputy Sheriff and is the son of Carla Shackelford and retired Game Warden “Big” Mike Spellman, a father of two and friend of many.

His fight now is one we all hear about way too often. Michael has been diagnosed with cancer. He has not asked for help nor would he even consider such a gesture, but it is our duty as friends of Michael to help him just as he has helped so many.

We are asking for anyone willing to make a donation or to purchase a raffle ticket to do so in his honor.

ALL proceeds go directly to Michael and his family to help with medical expenses and to seek out the best treatment they can afford. Michael does not have any insurance to cover these costs and has sold practically everything he owns to keep from burdening others.

We ask that you please help in any way you are able; please know your contributions will be treasured.

Finally, please take a moment and ask the Lord to look over Michael and his family, and pray that we can help them find peace through this difficult journey, AMEN… and Thank You! 


Sighting-In Your Bow: Keep it Simple

*As published at

By Kevin Reese

When considering hunter ethics, the most important element beyond the scope of wildlife conservation and habitat preservation is shot placement. Good bowhunters understand this critical ingredient and practice year round to ensure their prey receive nothing short of best efforts from confident, ethical integrity-minded sportsmen. 

As a matter of shot placement, accuracy and consistency are key. Many say practice is the only answer to consistently accurate shot placement; while this is true, it’s not the entire formula; well tuned equipment is also vital to your accuracy. Confidence in your equipment is as important as competence in your shooting abilities. Archers of all ages struggle with shot placement at some level whether dealing with target panic, buck fever, improper form or a bow in need of proper tuning; they key to mistake-proofing is using the process of elimination.

 Ensure your bow is well tuned, including timing, tiller, center shot, etc. and that your shooting equipment matches your needs, i.e. correctly spined arrows. Once you are sure of your equipment, ensure your shooting is consistent and accurate; at this point, accuracy doesn’t necessarily mean you’re making great shots, it simply means you are grouping your arrows and establishing a pattern. Now it’s time to sight in your bow.

Here’s a simple to tip to make sighting-in a bit easier.  Consider a cross, or crosshairs – a cross pattern is made of both a vertical and horizontal line; the point at which those lines meet is the bullseye. The problem most archers have when sighting in is that they focus on the bullseye as a point of aim instead of one line at a time.

Pick a side of your target specifically used for sighting-in and tape or spray paint a cross that spans the entire target. Decide which line you would like to aim at first; I like to aim at the horizontal line so we’ll begin there. Aim at only at that horizontal line and shoot well to the left of the vertical line. Move your aiming point to the right a couple of inches and put your pin on that horizontal line again, shoot, then move your aim to the right a few inches and shoot again; continue shooting at the horizontal line, moving from left to right, until you establish a consistent vertical distance above or below that horizontal line. If you consistently shoot below the horizontal line, adjust your pin or sight elevation down. Conversely, if you’re shooting above the horizontal line, adjust your pin or sight elevation up. ALWAYS FOLLOW YOUR ARROW WHEN ADJUSTING YOUR SIGHT!

Now, follow the same method for adjusting your windage (left to right adjustments). From the top and moving down every few inches between shots, aim only at the vertical line and shoot enough arrows to consistently show a pattern of hitting either to the left or right of that line. If you are hitting to the left of the line, adjust your sight to the left; if you are hitting to the right, adjust your sight to the right. Again, ALWAYS FOLLOW YOUR ARROW WHEN ADJUSTING YOUR SIGHT!

Many people understand how to sight-in a bow; however, many struggle with the process because they concentrate on hitting both lines at the same time. Sighting-in on one line at a time simplifies the process by concentrating your focus on one broad focal point – just try to hit the line, period. When you adjust to hit one line and then the next, your next shot will be exactly where you need it – in the vitals.  

Hunt hard, hunt often.

Kevin can be reached at for questions and comments.