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OFF MY CHEST

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by det131, Sep 19, 2011.

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  1. det131

    det131 Member

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    My apologies this is long but needs to be said, if you feel this is in the wrong category, my apologies for that also but I'm sure this applies to other clubs as well.


    An open letter to our shooters:


    Recently we have had to increase prices to cover expenses and still show a little profit here at Bucks County. This has only led to an increase of the gum flapping bitches that filter there way to me. So I am looking for positive input as to how to increase the participation of shooters at our club.


    Due to the recent increases I have started several new programs in order to offer some potential give backs to our shooters. I am also making some changes to our yearly schedule and contemplating several others. Those that are already in effect or that will go into effect shortly have been posted around the club for several weeks now. You should know what they are unless you have been to busy bitching to notice. If you haven’t had the opportunity to peruse them I will highlight them here.


    Our daily practice $1.00 coupons per 100 targets are still being offered.


    Green birds are thrown in all registered weekend events, singles, handicap, and doubles. Break the green bird or pair and get a $5.00 coupon good on a future date. Can be used for practice or registered birds.


    There is a progressive Straight Squad and a Mid Fifty Handicap jackpot on all weekend registered events. If awarded only one award will be made per weekend and ties on the Mid Fifty will divide. (The initial start up monies for those programs is coming directly out of my pocket.)


    There is a schedule and information posted for a series of structured registered shoots to be known as the Bragging Rights Trophy beginning after the first of the year. There will be trophy and shell awards to the winners. If there are a sufficient number of participants the shell awards will be increased.


    There is an appreciation award consisting of a free ATA round for shooters registering a significant number of targets at our club. The information for that is also posted at the club.


    I have made an offer to host game nights on Tuesdays during the summer if someone will step forward to oversee and run that program. It could also be done on another day, a select weekend during the month, or any other schedule you can come up with. Just need a complainer to come forward and put his money where his mouth is.


    Over the past two winters I have made it a point on snow days or immediately afterward to get to the club at 6:00 in the morning, clear snow from the fields, plow enough room in the lot for your cars, have the traps warmed and operational, etc. In my specific memory I can recall three times where I did that and had only one shooter come to the club, two of those days nobody came. I don't know about your business but I can't afford the expenses to spend some thirty hours at the club, power the traps, lights and heat, pay the help, then take in a gross income of eighteen dollars. I will not do that anymore. That is why under the new schedule we will not be open from mid January to mid February and the Tuesday program will not resume until April.


    This past weekend we hosted a benefit shoot for cancer research. Participation by registered shooters was in two words, "Piss poor." In addition to the Lewis options that were available, trophy and shell awards were made to the winners. The monies for those awards came directly out of my pocket and are not part of the expenses that have to be taken out of the proceeds that go to the charity. I am happy to do that but it burns my ass that there were not enough registered shooters to give the majority of them away.


    The trap help donates their time for these shoots also. If it were not for the practice shooters and outside donations the charity would have to be writing us a check to cover expenses.


    I know that some of you had other obligations and made donations to the charity in advance, can't thank you enough for that. Mr. Brown I know that you had things to do and places to be but you still made sure you came out and participated in the shoot. God bless you for that. Mr. Emilius, you also made a special effort to come out and shoot in all the events. Bless you also. Mr. Neil, I suspect you would have been here anyway but you also entered all the events and played all the options, kudos to you sir. I also know that not every shooter is always available every weekend, no hard feelings there. The remainder of the registered shooters were people that we only see here when we run these charity shoots, thank you for your continued support. Guess it's just too much to expect the rest of you with your $10,000.00 dollar shotguns and $35,000.00 vehicles to come out and spend an extra ten dollars to support the shoot and the charity.


    Perhaps it's just too easy here at Bucks County. Instead of just being able to come out any day we are open and get your targets in we should go to a more formal program. One registered shoot a month, events start and end at a specified time. If your late for an event, tough shit, no targets for you. We will of course have to increase the fees for registered targets so that I can have monies or prizes available for shoot winners if that is what you would like to see.


    Additionally we will have to start charging for targets per bird thrown and not by birds shot at. This is just simple economics. If it cost me .16 for every target out of the house and I charge you .20 for every one you shoot at ($5.00 per round) it takes me four more targets just to cover the cost of that, "See one," at the beginning of your round. Still haven't made any money yet, either for me or to put back in the program. Now every time you launch a target throwing a shell in the bucket, closing the action on your gun, talking on the line, setting up the traps, etc. it takes more and more targets shot at to cover those costs and I lose money, can't keep doing that. I guess the fairest way to do that would be to record the numbers on each trap before and after you shoot your round and then surcharge the squad .20 for each extra target.


    Please understand that this is a volume driven endeavor, it costs me the same to throw one case as it does to throw fifty. If we can average a sufficient number of targets a day then there will be funds available to run some of the programs and giveaways I have heard mentioned. At the current level it is not possible to do that. I am afraid if it were not for the number of casual shooters that come out on the weekends the trap program here at Bucks County would have to close.


    I have hired a young lady, Helen Waite, to listen to and catalogue your complaints. She will organize them and forward them to me.


    If you have constructive criticism or positive ideas please bring them to me directly, otherwise please go to Helen Waite.


    Thank you


    Jim
     
  2. cubancigar2000

    cubancigar2000 Well-Known Member

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    I am a Pres of a smaller club. Your letter will get you no where fast/ I do understand your position ( trust me) it is the same at most all clubs. I also donate my time and some money and recieve nothing. Why? Because I love the sport and the people. Yes Traps shooters can be a bunch of cheap sob but they are basically good folks and will vacate your club faster than you can say scat when they get your message. might I suggest you think about what you just typed and re write it??? At our club we have decided ( my Sec Treas & I) that we will just bite the bullet through the hard times and give back a little more until the profit returns as it just is not there right now. I am sorry you feel the way you do but I do understand because I am there also. However I am not going to run everybody away with a bad attitude but rather I will bite the bullet for now like all of us Americans are doing right now. Chill out my friend. Things will get better as soon as we hit bottom & we are not there yet so buckle down and hang in there or get out of it. It wont get better with the current president & even with a new one recovery is a few years at best away
     
  3. superxjeff

    superxjeff Active Member

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    WOW!! I thought I could be an Alpha henry! You give me a run for my money pardner. Welcome to the world of people who will take advantage of you if you let them. I call it the WIIFM crowd. ( what is in it for me) If they don't get more back then they put in, then they do not do it.

    You have to charge what you have to charge in order to remain viable. Target costs have gone up everywhere. Our club charges you for every target thrown. We allow so many targets for breakage per round and if we find that people are shooting at them without breaking them, we will make it even fewer. That is what club management stated a long time ago after we went to coin operated traps.

    It has worked out well.

    You have to do what you have to do. Being bitter about it should not be part of the equation.

    You have allowed people to take advantge of your good nature and it hurts when they don't respond in kind. Trust me I know how you feel.

    Run the club like a business and screw the people who do not like it. Every other club charges what they must to get by.

    My mother taught me that nobody takes advantage of me without my permission. You have learned this the hard way. See to it that it stops but doesn't color your view of good shooters everywhere. Mr. Nice guy got you nothing. Mr. Businessman will get you exactly the same thing but without feeling like somebody stuck it to you. Jeff
     
  4. det131

    det131 Member

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    Cuban:


    I also love this sport and that’s why I do it and will continue to do it. Several years ago there was an issue with the management of the trap program at the club. I took this position on a temporary basis to prevent the program being shut down permanently and fixed all those issues. (Along with the help of my co-horts Frank & Charlie) I have no problem putting my own money and that earned by the program back into it. What I do have a problem with is the same small cadre of shooters who keep telling me what we need to do and then fail to support those programs when instituted. This was not meant to offend or chase off any shooter, just hoping that someone at my club or anyone else's will take a moment to reflect.


    I will also say that to my great pleasure I have found the majority of trap shooters, particularly all those I have met through this site, to be among the kindest, most giving, and special persons I have ever encountered.

    Super X:

    Actually I'm not bitter and business is business. Some just don't seem to understand that you can't buy material for ten dollars a square and sell it installed for nine dollars a square and still eat.


    Jim
     
  5. Dickgshot

    Dickgshot Well-Known Member

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    Maybe your attitude has something to do with why you're not making a profit.
     
  6. GW22

    GW22 Active Member

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    Well Jim you sure are a friendly fella, aintcha? LOL.

    -Gary
     
  7. Ahab

    Ahab Well-Known Member

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    Except for Cuban and SuperX ... you guy are a perfect example of what he is bitching about!
     
  8. need to shoot more

    need to shoot more Active Member

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    Can you check with Langhorne, Falls and Holmesburg clubs that are similar and get a pulse of how they are doing? There was a memeroial shoot on Sunday and the guy isnt even passed ( go figure)
     
  9. Hal1225

    Hal1225 Member

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    Thank you to the 12 guys who came home from the war and founded the club that I shoot at. Also thank you to the land owner who donated a 99 year lease! The guys who trap shoot there are fantastic as well as the fokes who donate their time to run the house, score etc. I consider myself very lucky to have had the chance to learn how to trap shoot.

    Harry Lyga
     
  10. Jim Porter

    Jim Porter Well-Known Member

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    Well that just about says it! Believe me, every club, especially a volunteer membership club has an active crew called "THEY". As in, THEY need to change the tolit paper, THEY need to load the traps, THEY need to mow grass, THEY need to haul trash, THEY need to build something that will make my life more comfortable!

    I understand your frustration--not anger---frustration that everybody does not love, respect, and give back what you give them.

    I suggest you back off for a while and let things level out ie. go to s#$% and let THEM start over.
     
  11. det131

    det131 Member

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    You guys are faster than I can type and post. Guess I stirred some emotions.


    Once again, I am not bitter or unfriendly, ask anyone that has done business with me at the club.


    In the specific instance regarding the recent shoot what I will hear is, "I didn't know it was this weekend." This of course is in spite of it being posted here, by email, at our club, and numerous other locations. This will come from the shooters who are there every weekend almost without fail but seem to miss the weekends when an actual program is going on. The only logical conclusion is they are not there because they know what is going on otherwise some would show up just by accident.


    Our price increase is directly related to an increased cost of targets and delivery. The last two times we saw cost increases we did not change prices. That was no longer an option for us and we raised prices .02 per target.


    The bit about snow days as well as too busy complaining and not being aware of the information posted at the club is related to a complaint about us not being open the first weekend of August due to vacations of club personnel. The closing was posted at the club in excess of six weeks, here on TS, via e-mail, and the club calendar. You can't believe the number of times I have heard from a particular shooter how wrong it was for us to be closed and not to have told anybody, since they showed up and nobody was here.


    I actually enjoyed those days plowing and snow blowing and was happy to be here and do it. Just want some to realize they are not the only ones that go out of there way and get disappointed. The one shooter that did show up was actually very pleased and we enjoyed shooting together in the snow and wind.


    I never said we were not making a profit, not a lot, but covering expenses and trying to put some extra back into the program. If the complainers would bring one extra shooter with them once in awhile that would be a great help. I hear all the time how it was back in the sixties and seventies with the number of shooters. I know how it was, I was one of them.


    The other clubs mentioned do not shoot registered targets every day they are open to the best of my knowledge. At least one does run big fifty shoots. Tried that on Tuesday evenings, no support. I am sure their ATA shoots are structured as to when events begin and end when the next event starts. Most likely you can't show up at 3:30 in the afternoon to shoot the morning's singles event by yourself. Thus my comment about making it too easy and cutting the number of registered shoots. Though I have no personal knowledge but as reported to me at least one of those clubs has so many shooters they are falling over themselves.(?)


    At present I have a house, a farm to run upstate, a full time shift work job that I am on call for 24/7, run the 4H shotgun program, and have a nearly full time job at the club, and I feel bad that I can't be at the club more than I already am. I would like to in the near future get a coaching certification in addition to the NRA and 4H certs., and try to get some kind of program going for the students at DelVal college. I don't have time to run a games program. Nothing would please me more if one or more of the shooters would step up and run a program.


    And I am not angry, maybe a little frustrated, but I love this game and do not want to see any club have to cut programs or close cause it's too tough to get them back.


    As with anything you only get back what you put into it. I will continue to put my all into the program, need some of the complainers to put something in besides their opinion.


    One more thing. Helen Waite was supposed to make you laugh at the end of all that.


    Jim
     
  12. IndyShotgun

    IndyShotgun TS Member

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    Charge a man for every target your crappy system throws when he closes a bolt or racks a slide, and that's the last you'll see of him.
     
  13. superxjeff

    superxjeff Active Member

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    indyShotgun ,

    Then good by and good riddance to that man. He is the same guy who wants to pay 3:50 cents a round to have a paid person sit in a trap and place the targets on the throwing arm. Out of touch with reality guy is what I call him. He can take his cheap ass down the road to find what he wants and wind up not shooting when he finds out that it doesn't exist.

    Targets cost money and people cost money. If you are willing to pay 11.00 a round I am sure there is a club that can accommodate you. The other clubs in the world are making changes in these hard times in order to survive. Jeff
     
  14. mixer

    mixer Well-Known Member

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    Let them shoot for free. Only charge them $.50 for each target they break. Seems fair enough to me.

    Eric
     
  15. superxjeff

    superxjeff Active Member

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    If you can't figure out how to use voice pulls without throwing extra targets then maybe you shouldn't have a gun in your hands. My11 year old daughter can do it. Jeff
     
  16. det131

    det131 Member

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    Indy:


    No intention to charge for those targets, its part of the game. Would be nice if some were a little more careful with the amount of chatter that throws bird after bird though. Some seem to think the target fairy just leaves all those extra targets on the pillow.


    One of the chief complaints coming to me is, "Why are we being so greedy?" referring to the .02 per target increase. Not making anything extra on this unless the volume more than doubles, if that were to happen we could roll prices back and would like to do so.


    The very first sentence in my comentary requesting positive input is what this is all about. I think all of us can use positive suggestions to make their programs better. Don't just tell me it's broken, help me fix it. I think that any program at any club could use that.


    Jim
     
  17. IndyShotgun

    IndyShotgun TS Member

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    Jeff, if a moron can't or won't calibrate a call for a semi bolt drop, the club deserves to have its margins drop.

    This sport grows from semi and pump shooters. If you aren't taking care of the semi and pump shooters, you aren't helping the sport.
     
  18. Setterman

    Setterman Well-Known Member

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    Your letter is too long. Most won't read it. Some will care, some won't, and some will misinterpret it. You are better off simply announcing that the price has to increase, and then post a ledger explaining why, or carry an explanation sheet in your wallet.

    Who else is going to do your job?
     
  19. det131

    det131 Member

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    Setterman:


    I know it was long. Wasn't going to post it here but it was recommended I do so.


    A lot have evidently misinterpreted what I was trying to get across. Obviously I am not a writer.


    I also need to post an apology to the Two Century Trap Club that shoots regularly at our facility. They held their regular shoot at the club on Sunday. During the course of that shoot they collected a significant donation to the charity from their members. I should have mentioned that in the original. I regret not doing so. It is always the greatest of pleasures to have you at our club and I always look forward to the days that you are there. You have never hesitated to support the club and our endeavors.


    My deepest thanks.


    Jim
     
  20. superxjeff

    superxjeff Active Member

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    IndyShotgun
    You have no idea what you are talking about. Jeff
     
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