Speed, skill, theatre, guns

The Shoot Out at the Ridge is this weekend at the Mission Rod and Gun Club

“Preacher Flynn T. Locke

Saloon girls, rough and tough cowboys, outlaws and sherriffs will be converging in Mission this weekend as the local rod and gun club fits together the final pieces for the annual cowboy shoot.

A blend of theatre and target sports, The Shoot Out at the Ridge, Villains of the Old West, draws dozens of competitors from across the Pacific Northwest to Mission May 18-20.

Dressed up in their finest vintage duds, and sporting antique or replica period-appropriate firearms, organizer Ron Tarnawski, aka Preacher Flynn T. Locke, said the event commandeers the entire club, and features five locations with three stages set up, and a number of targets.

Each stop has different story lines, he said. Tarnawski has penned one scenario in which Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid blow up a safe, and then engage in a duel with the Pinkertons.

A different story sees train passengers  defending themselves against Cassidy and his sidekick.

Competitors are scored on speed and accuracy, he added, and use pistols, revolvers, rifles and shotguns.

“It’s a different discipline. It’s an action-shooting sport.”

Tarnawski got involved three years ago when his wife accompanied him to the range, and some members put the holsters on her and guided her to the targets.

“She was hooked.”

Now, “Georgia Bank” makes her own costumes and competes alongside her husband.

Tarnawski said it’s a highly social event and draws a number of families. Everyone is invited to come check out the competition, but bring your own eye/ear protection.

For more information visit www.missionrodandgun.com.