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Would You Travel to a Non-Permissive State for a Match?

I’ve been struggling with something for a long as I’ve been involved in the shooting sports, and that is IDPA and USPSA both holding national championships in states that hate our gun rights.

This week IDPA is holding the S&W Indoor Nationals at S&W in Massachusetts. Mass isn’t known as a bastion of gun rights (although after listening to Weer’d on the Squirrel Report for a while I understand that it isn’t quite as awful as some of it’s neighbors), but getting there basically requires a plane ticket or traveling with a gun through states that I refuse to travel through all together, much less armed.

I generally think that the folks at USPSA have their heads screwed on pretty straight, but even they aren’t without fault. USPSA is holding the 2015 USPSA Singlestack Nationals in Barry, Illinois. Yes, Illinois recently gained concealed carry, but that’s small potatoes compared to some of the wacky laws on the books in that state (.pdf).

I’m pretty spoiled here in the eastern part of North Carolina with all of the matches we have available to shoot, but even if I had to travel to get in a good match, I wouldn’t be interested in going to either of these places to shoot a match. Too much hassle.

About Lucas

Editor/Head Honcho at Triangle Tactical. Lucas is a life long shooter and outdoorsman, avid concealed carrier and competitive shooter, and a lover of pork fat.


  1. At last check, the owner of PASA Park was none other than Dick Metcalf. Remember why he got shown the door at Guns & Ammo magazine?

  2. ALL match shooters NEED to step up and REFUSE to participate with the ENEMY in these anti gun states….including the in state matches for locals…… a silent beginning, for a worthy cause …..imho

    • Locals in places like NJ and NY shouldn’t participate in matches in their own state? I don’t agree with that. Some folks are stuck in these places, and I don’t have any problem with them making the best of things while they’re there. If they let the shooting sports die, the anti’s win.

  3. I won’t go to any state that prohibits my CCW or puts limits on magazine capacity. I think it’s stupid to hold these matches in those states. Why should we contribute our $$$ to those states. Don’t attend and the organizers of the matches will find other locations more suitable for the gun culture.

  4. There was a gentleman who was actually begging us to come and participate in a summer biathlon match in his home state of NJ. He kept telling us it was only a hour away from the present venue, that it was a good place to compete.

    Maybe so, but none of us wanted to even think about how many state laws we would be breaking by entering the state of NJ with our biathlon rifles (.22lr, bolt action,w/ 5 round magazines) and ammunition. The poor man was pleading with us, stating that they (NJ authorities) wouldn’t prosecute his fellow competitors.

    I already understood at the time (about 10 years ago) that I couldn’t even buy .22lr for the match in NJ if I declined to bring my own due to legal restraints. I didn’t have a FOID card in NJ, and not an NJ resident. If he supplied me with ammunition, he would be breaking a state law, also.

    How do people live in NJ? Every time I drive near the boarder, I feel like I’m peering into Mordor.

  5. I live in northern delaware, sandwiched within 15 miles of NJ AND MD…

    I avoid both like the plague. I will actually drive 20 minutes in the wrong direction if it means going to the Walmart in DE instead of 2 minutes into MD.

    People who live in these NPE’s should definitely participate in the shooting sports, or Lucas is right, they will die. I however will not risk my freedom or rights to participate. Even though for me right now, that means not being able to participate at all.

  6. I am sure that our founders would been successful in obtaining our liberty by failing to exercise those actions they believed necessary to freedom. You guys stay home all you want…if I want to shoot the match and can do so legally, I will go shoot the match. Hopefully I will see you at the range.

  7. I would probably travel to a non-permissive state to train; so yeah, I probably would travel to the same state for a match if it was important to compete in that particular match.

  8. Just drove the 1400+ miles round trip to shoot the 2015 S&W match. I even left last Wednesday night before the snow started so that I could make it for my Friday shooting day. I have shot it for 8 of the last 10 years. This will probably be the last time, simply because I don’t live in CT(still have my CT permit) any more.

    All of my travels followed the letter of the law, although I will admit to not stopping in MD or NJ. My guns and ammo were locked in separate cases, and I even went so far as to field strip and trigger lock my 2 Glocks. Gassing up in Delaware got me to my mother’s house in CT.

    Most of the time, I drove up the morning of the match and home after. This time I did stay at the match hotel and ate at the restaurant attached to the hotel. Every interaction with the “locals” I was polite and did my best to represent the gun owning community to the best of my ability.

    While when home here in the Triangle I will avoid anti-gun businesses, but the opportunity to shoot at S&W is not something you can do all the time. I followed the laws, ran into no trouble, and did my best to show that gun owners are regular people. Will it change the mind of the locals in MA? I don’t know, but I gave them no additional reason to hate us.

    I hope this makes sense. I am still tired from the drive.

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