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Someone please save Prado

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by Jack Daniel, May 11, 2008.

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  1. Jack Daniel

    Jack Daniel TS Member

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    I stopped going to Prado some years ago when the ownership changed and it was no longer a fun place to visit. Prior to that, I had been a regular (weekly) trap shooter and occasional pistol shooter, having spent thousands of dollars on firearms purchases and reloading supplies in addition to the trap fees. Today I decided to take my neighbor there to shoot rimfire rifles. I called ahead to make sure it was open, no organized shoots were taking place and for the range fees. When we arrived, the pistol facility was in shoddy condition to say the least. Not that that was a problem, but it was certainly an indicator of their commitment to the shooters experience. The range fee is $15 for all day, higher than any other outdoor range that I have visited, and those other ranges have much nicer accommodations. Then the guy asks me what range I will be shooting at. I say from 25 to 50 feet. No he says, you have to pick one set range, all I have left is 30 and 40 feet. What? I can only choose one distance to shoot at all day? Yes he says. And if that wasn't stupid enough, 30 or 40 feet? Those aren't even standard distances. I did not register or pay, instead I went to the main club house to complain. There I encountered a gal at the counter that appeared to be on the rag, she had been there on my last visit and was one of the reasons I stopped shooting trap there. I began to tell her my frustration and she says all I ever do is complain so I should leave. Well, that's just what I did after telling her what I thought of her facility. By the way, we were the only two in the clubhouse on a Saturday. In the old days that club house would have been filled with shooters buying/looking at guns (which they no longer have), reloading supplies and buying tokens for the automated trap machines. Look at the picture on their web site, it shows the old days ( http://shootprado.com/proshop.asp ). Now the place looks more like a Starbucks than a shooting facility clubhouse. Oh I take thaqt back, every Starbucks I've ever been in had good help and was busy.

    This facility, one of the very last in the area that has trap and skeet, was the venue for the '84 Olympics. It was a world class facility built by publishing magnate Robert Petersen. It is on the downward slide and I fully expect it to become extinct if nothing changes. The guy that owned it when I left, and I suspect still does, is a complete idiot about business. Everything he has done has chased customers away and run the facility into the ground. I see where the Tri-County shooters now go to Redlands, 30 miles further each way for some of them, rather than shoot at Prado. We all know how hard it is for a shooting venue to operate in todays climate and especially here in California. I only hope that someone will buy this facility and turn it around. I am certain that with a little common sense and investment, this facility would return to being a fun place to shoot, a place that former shooters would return to and would draw new shooters to our ranks, and be PROFITABLE. Until then, I ask that other local shooters, whether they use the facility or not, take the time to visit it or call and make their feelings known. If we, the shooters, do nothing this place will join the long list of places that no longer exist. We don't have many choices when it comes to places to shoot in So Cal.and cannot afford to lose another.
     
  2. grunt

    grunt TS Supporters TS Supporters

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  3. Jack Daniel

    Jack Daniel TS Member

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    DB Bill, Thanks for the info, you make some points that I certainly was not aware of. Do you think that they (Prado) would have a better chance of survival if 1) they had a wide base of support from shooters and 2)if they were generating revenue (taxes) for the county? With tough economic times upon us, local government agencies might take a hard look at killing off a source of revenue.
     
  4. Jack Daniel

    Jack Daniel TS Member

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    O.K., then an honest question: What should others do? Keep going back (I can't do that as I've been banished), go elsewhere and write the place off? Just asking.
     
  5. 22hornet

    22hornet Well-Known Member

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    Location:
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    I used to shoot there when I lived in Long Beach. Same thing...inexperienced shooters ( I have no problem with inexperienced shooters, but when I suggested that loading more than one shell when on the line is not safe, or hearing and eye protection is a good thing, or keep muzzels pointed downrange, etc, I was met with cold stares ) poor targets and lack of supervision. Shame to see a good place go down the tubes. Not a lot of places to shoot in the L.A. Basin anymore, and that is a shame, too.
     
  6. E. Beaver

    E. Beaver Member

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    Prado has made some improvement over the past few months.

    Thy now have gun racks at each field and a few extra benches. And most of the time they have 4 fields up and running.

    I go there during the week to practice and by and large the shooters are good safe sportsmen.

    The targets are not the best but as the saying goes "if you can shoot at Prado you can shoot anywhere".

    Prado is well located and with increased supervision and better targets it could be a first class operation.
     
  7. E. Beaver

    E. Beaver Member

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    More on Prado.

    They have the lowest non member rates around. Buy 20 tokens for $110.00. That's $5.50 per round for 27 targets.

    They have been watering to get the grass and trees to grow. Alhough at times it is a little muddy in some spots in the morning.

    Another trash can at the fence between fields 2 and 3 would be helpful. Used to have one there but it's been gone lately.

    A range officer on hand on the weekends would help to shape things up safety wise.
     
  8. fssberson

    fssberson Active Member

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    E. Beaver: North Hollywood Sportsman's Club has lower prices per round and you do not have to buy in volume. Wednesday morning is $4.00 per round and free coffee AND the home of the PERFECT target. Fred
     
  9. Jack Daniel

    Jack Daniel TS Member

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    Its very easy to tell which places care about the customer and which don't! Any change in ownership there would be an improvement.
     
  10. Bill92869

    Bill92869 TS Member

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    I too stopped going to Prado some time back, it was so poorly run I didn't feel safe let alone enjoy myself. Has anything changed since the last post? I'd sure like to be able to return!
     
  11. Bill92869

    Bill92869 TS Member

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    I recently heard Prado was closed or closing, can anyone verify that? As I was banished last year, so you might say I'm not in the loop so I have to ask for confirmation.
     
  12. grunt

    grunt TS Supporters TS Supporters

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    Anyone heard anything about the club?
     
  13. BMC

    BMC Member

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    I haven't heard anything, but it is owned by the county and leased to the owner as a concession facility. Recently the concession contract was coming to an end and a prominent trapshooting/range operation figure among us offered to assume control of the facility, but the county turned down the offer for some unknown reason. If I recall it was something about no need to fix what they didn't deem as broken. Obviously the county doesn't shoot there. I would love for the range to be given an overhaul. Its only ten minutes from my house.
     
  14. Tom Strunk

    Tom Strunk Well-Known Member

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    I was at Prado one month ago. Everything was well cared for and the Pro shop is outstanding. The grass was well cared for and very green. Chad has recently installed a second Pro shop for the rifle and pistol people, it too is very neat, clean, and stocked with the best acessories made.

    We shot some five stand while there and had a great time. We were there on a Tuesday and Friday. The parking lot was full of cars and trucks, many people were there shooting trap and skeet. His pistol ranges are used by all the law inforcement countys and citys in the area, busy, busy, all the time.

    Chad recently signed a new lease with the county for another five years with an additional five years at his option. It safe to say that all is well and good at Prado no matter what you nay sayers want others to believe.

    I'm really tired of the bad mouthing without the guts to sign your name. No one is forcing you to shoot there, they don't need your business.

    Tom Strunk
     
  15. Chango2

    Chango2 Active Member

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    I have shot at Prado lots of times recently and have no problem with trapshooting there. It is pleasant, the help is supportive, and the targets while not perfect all the time, are challenging and not outrageously illegal if at all illegal. Chad is friendly and supportive, the office area and pro shop is comfortable. Basically, I agree with Eager Beaver and Tom Strunk who contributed to this thread. I have no idea what goes on at the pistol side or what the condition is over there, but I can't imagine the staff reacting with rudeness unless provoked. Chad is open and candid in conversation, and I am very sure that if there are legitimate problems, he will address them the best he can. I do know that for whatever reason, ATA attendance at Prado was poor during the recent past. I think that's a shame and hope ATA shooting grows and one day returns to Prado. I have fond memories of shooting in ATA events at Prado back in the early 90's.

    Wishing Prado success and good fortune,

    David Buchman
    Los Angeles
     
  16. Bill92869

    Bill92869 TS Member

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    Complaining about a facility that has declined over the years to a mere shadow of what it was is not bad mouthing. The conditions today at Prado compared to other facilities in the region, Redlands, Triple B, etc. is sadly lacking. The problem of sufficient range supervision on the trap fields has been commented on time and time again as has the lack of friendly staff. As for the Club house, anyone that was around long ago when it really was stocked with supplies, guns, reloading equipment and clothing, and friendly staff, will tell you that today it is a far cry from what it once was. Prado used to be more than a place to shoot, it was a place to gather and share great times. Many of us had as much enjoyment from the social aspect as from the shooting. Today it is little more than a poorly functioning vending machine. The only thing I wish for is for it to return to the facility it once was.
     
  17. Tom Strunk

    Tom Strunk Well-Known Member

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    Bill92869 -

    Being you were banished from the club last year, how can anyone believe your statement on what the club looks like today ?? It sure doesn't from what I saw there last month.

    You were banished to use your words, but for what ?? Cursing at the employees ? Stealing ? Cheating ? it had to be one of the three. I'm sure you will have a great excuse, so let's hear it.

    I have shot at Prado since it was built, and shot across the street at Don Richardson's place before he was bought out and the Prado club was built for the 1984 Olympics. The afternoon coastal breezes can be rough on the targets, but it was never that bad.

    There is no doubt that Redlands has the best targets in SoCal. It's because of the smog background and the green targets, they just look so good every spring thru fall. The targets have been great since I began shooting in 1978 and Kinky was running the place. They have no coastal breeze's at Redlands.

    Tom Strunk
     
  18. Hap MecTweaks

    Hap MecTweaks Well-Known Member

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    I guess I missed the "bad" years shooting at Prado. I shot registered targets there before the Olympics were held and enjoyed those shoots a lot. My last visit was in April with Tom Strunk and we enjoyed shooting there immensely! There were people all over the place shooting different venues, lots of laughter and camaraderie was what I saw? I've throughly enjoyed myself at lesser shooting facilities all over the country and enjoyed my good time at Prado. It's too bad for us shooters that the club no longer holds registered shoots there. Merely asking Chad why will reveal the true answers. From all I saw there, he's doing a fine job catering to the general public and improving the place as he can afford it. I hope to shoot there again soon!!

    Gene Hapney
     
  19. paul e. stark

    paul e. stark TS Member

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    I just shot there last week and had a damn good time! Tucson trap and skeet is my home base and it was nice to shoot over some grass.By the way I got the real story about jack daniel from some people in the pro shop and if only half of it is true no wonder they tossed his ass out.
     
  20. BMC

    BMC Member

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    If you want to just throw some lead at targets, its fine.
    If you want to shoot at quality thrown targets at a quality venue, it ain't fine.
     
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