NORTH OF GREAT FALLS — The Great Falls Shooting Sports Complex was busy on Wednesday, filled with the sound of rifles and pistols being fired for an event designed to allow reporters for hunting magazines and other media outlets to try out new guns coming to market.
The event is normally held in conjunction with the Shooting, Hunting, Outdoor Trade (SHOT) Show, which was scheduled to be held in Las Vegas but was canceled this year due to the pandemic.
"We have media from all over the western part of the United States and even as far east as Alabama here today,” said Belt resident Chad Schearer, the media relations representative for the parent company of the companies that had guns at the event.
He said Montana seemed like a natural choice when the usual event in Las Vegas was canceled. "We had four locations that we were looking at and we decided Montana is in my backyard and for logistics everybody loves coming to Montana. The Great Falls Shooting Sports Complex is a beautiful facility, so we decided 'Let's plan one of the events in Montana, take a chance on the weather in May, and boom. We were pretty fortunate,” said Schearer.
Joe Ferronato lives in Bozeman and works for a hunting magazine. He, too, enjoyed having the event so close to home: "It's a great spot to get in one place with a bunch of industry folks. being able to come up here, close to home, just a couple hours away and still spend time with great people (is) awesome."
Schearer said some of the products on display Wednesday would be available “as early as the next few weeks” while others would be available sometime during the summer. For more information, call the Great Falls Shooting Sports Complex at 406-868-6635, or click here to visit the website.