By Isabel P
Senior Girl Reporter
Girls on Target was hosted by Lucerne Valley Lions Club at the Lucerne Valley Lions Club Shooting Range on July 31, 2016 from 8am-2pm.
This event was twofold, not only to teach girls about firearm safety and respect, but to have fun while learning. Mary Sawyer, Director of Program, ran the educational firearms program for Girl Scouts in the High Desert.
We were divided into four groups that rotated between stations. Each group had a leader that directed us to our proper stations throughout the day. This was my second year attending Girls on Target. Last year the safety portion was a classroom environment. This year the safety portion was hands on.
There were many different types of firearms. The firearms we shot were semi-automatic rifles, black powder rifles, shotguns, and handguns both semi-automatic and powder. Black powder firearms are loaded differently. These firearms are loaded through the chamber with a certain amount of black powder, a cloth patch and a lead ball. To secure these items into the chamber, a metal rod was used to force the materials to the bottom. This year was the first year this gun was ever used in the Girls on Target event.
Certified firearm instructors showed us how to properly load the bullets into the magazine (container that transfers bullets into chamber), how to insert the magazine and how to properly hold the gun. We each shot 35 rounds. After the rounds ended we were able to fetch our target.
Not all stations had personal targets for us to take home. Stations that did not have personal targets had an alternative. They had mounted metal targets that we shot instead of personal ones. Not only did we shoot firearms, but we also got a chance to do archery.
The instructors at that station gave us a quick run through on how to hold the bow, placement of the arrow and the proper way to pull the bow without straining our muscles. Some girls preferred archery over firearms, others did not. My personal favorite was the semi-automatic handgun.
After I shot the firearm, I felt more confident. It made me realize that I can do it. I would recommend this event to other girls so that they do not miss out on the fun. A lot of the girls left with big smiles on their faces along with feelings of confidence and accomplishment.
Attending Girls on Target is a great way for girls to become more aware of firearm safety rules and make them feel amazing about themselves. I personally think it is important for women to learn how to shoot firearms, not only for self defense, but for fun as well.