Thursday, June 9, 2016

How We Measure Success........

Making memories in the field and enjoying the great outdoors is what hunting is all about!

In August 2015, Shoot Like A Girl was a featured exhibitor at the Virginia Outdoor Sportsman Show.  As part of the event, we teamed up with Monquin Creek Outfitters, of Virginia, to give away a spring turkey hunt for the 2016 season to one lucky shooter at our trailer from the show.  Monquin Creek Outfitters is known throughout the country as one of the premier places for turkey and I was thrilled at the opportunity to aid in this hunt’s success for our lucky winner.
Rita Cook was randomly selected as our winner.  I had such a great time talking with Rita in preparation for the hunt, her excitement was radiating through the phone! 
My April calendar was filling up fast!  What an exciting month! My daughter has accompanied my husband and I turkey hunting her entire life. At eight years old it was finally time for her to try and fill her very first tag. My family traveled to Kansas to hunt with our daughter for the youth season. What an emotional roller costar that was! Kansas is know for its large turkey population and we had many close encounters along with two missed shots. All the time spent teaching and helping assist my husband in molding here with all the needed skills for her success in the field I almost cried after those two missed opportunities. She didn’t get her first turkey but learned many valuable lessons in the field; and she would eventually harvest her first turkey towards the end of April.  Tears of joy flowed that day I must confess. After my families trip to Kansas it was time to go to work for Shoot Like A Girl.  We were a featured exhibitor at the Cabela’s store grand opening in Short Pump, VA. The Cabela’s grand opening was a success and I even got the chance to meet Rita’s family at the event.
It was finally time to travel to Manquin, VA in preparation for an early morning date with the turkeys.  There is always something special about sharing the outdoors with another female that loves and shares in the same passion. Knowing the alarm would sound extremely early that morning we couldn’t help but sit up late the night before trading stories and getting to know one another better.
I wanted nothing more than to help locate and watch Rita successfully harvest a turkey, unfortunately, this is not one of those articles.
I had many highs this turkey season, my daughter harvested her first bird, which I must confess is at the top of the list, and I too, had several successful hunts harvesting birds in various states.  As I look back on the 2016 turkey season and the many days in the field, this hunt with Rita actually makes the top three.
Accompanying us on the hunt was Chip from Monquin Creek Outfitters, along with Hank who was representing Virginia Outdoor Sportsman’s Show. The turkeys were extremely quiet that morning and as you turkey hunters know, it is very hard to harvest a quiet bird.  A few distant gobbles from the roost and that was it, the odds were defiantly stacked against us!  Even through the struggles with the turkeys we were having a great time.  We all shared stories as we traveled to from location to location, looking for that hot lonely tom.  I have to applaud Chip, he tried as hard as he could to get Rita on a bird, we logged many miles and covered a lot of ground in our efforts.  As I got to know Rita better, I began to understand the various obstacles she has faced in hunting. Rita had struggled to find information of public hunting opportunities in her area; she also struggled with acceptance as a female hunter in her local hunting club.  As I learned of her troubles, I started evaluate how we measure success as a hunter.

Success is not measured in our harvest!  To me, success is enjoying the outdoors and passing along our knowledge and skills to others, to passionately appreciate the beauty and serenity of the outdoors that the good Lord created! Hank and Chip were able to share with Rita their knowledge of various public hunting opportunities and hunting clubs in her area that she had previously not known about.  I am so grateful I had the opportunity to hunt and share the outdoors with Rita, Chip, and Hank, and I am thrilled to call each of them friends!  It’s amazing how fast the outdoors bonds people together from various backgrounds.  I have enjoyed keeping in touch with Rita since the hunt and here are her thoughts about the hunt.

“I was fortunate enough to win a turkey hunt at Monquin Creek with Shoot Like a Girl’s Cristy Crawford.  To say I was excited is the understatement of the year!  I was going to get to hunt some of the best land in my area with a woman hunter that I totally admired.  It was a dream hunt for me. I made that fatal turkey hunting mistake of assuming that I was no doubt going to harvest a turkey.  How could I not, right?  Ha!!  Turkeys never make it that easy, which is exactly why I can’t stop!  The ups and downs of turkey hunting are what make it so exciting.  This hunt was no exception.  We heard some Toms early but they did not follow the script we had written.  We hunted all morning and I had a blast!  I did not harvest a turkey but the hunt was everything I dreamed it would be.  I met some awesome people and I got to experience hunting with them.  Never miss an opportunity to hunt with experienced hunters because they will teach you so much.  Cristy was no exception.  She shared stories and offered advice that will help me to become a better hunter.  This hunt was a HUGE success because I was able to hear turkeys, hunt beautiful land, and made friends that will last a lifetime and that is what hunting is all about.”  – Rita Cook
Making memories in the field and enjoying the great outdoors is what hunting is all about. Measure success by the memories and knowledge created in the field and you will always have a successful hunt! Take a friend hunting and help us pass on the blessings of the great outdoors!

Come Shoot a Pistol, Rifle & Bow with Shoot Like A Girl at the 2016 Virginia Outdoor Sportsmans Show! Click Here for More Details
For More Information on Monquin Creek Outfitters     CLICK HERE 

Cristy Crawford - Shoot Like A Girl 
Chief Operations Officer, Cabela’s Pro Staff

Friday, June 3, 2016

Weatherby Inc. Signs on as Corporate Partner with Shoot Like A Girl

Weatherby Inc. signs on as corporate partner with Shoot Like A GirlShoot Like a Girl is proud to welcome Weatherby Inc. and looks forward to seeing the positive impact this partnership has on new women shooters

Athens, AL – May 18, 2016 – Shoot Like A Girl’s state-of-the-art, 52-foot mobile range will be showcasing a new logo on their trailer this year at  the NRA Annual Meeting, Weatherby Inc. has signed on as a corporate sponsor with the company.  Weatherby Inc., a name long established in the firearm industry, is highly regarded as a leader and Shoot Like A Girl is honored to add them to their great team of Corporate Partners.  "With the increasing number of women hunting and shooting it was important to us to help meet the needs of this growing population," says Director of People & Culture, Brenda Weatherby.  "Partnering with Shoot Like A Girl is an honor considering we share the same passion and commitment.  With the benefits each corporation brings with their own individual expertise, this collaboration stands to garner even more successes for the companies and the industry as a whole.  “Weatherby is known for designing great rifles, and this year as they launch their newest rifle, the Vanguard Camilla, a rifle designed by women for women, couldn’t be a better time to add them to our elite list of corporate partners.  All of our partners enable Shoot Like A Girl to travel around the country and empower women to participate in shooting sports.  We simply could not do this without their support, and we are thankful that Weatherby has joined the team,” says owner and founder, Karen Butler.

Shoot Like a Girl will be featuring the  new Weatherby Vanguard® Camilla™ at their Trailer during the NRA Annual Meeting May 19th-22nd, 2016.. The Camilla™ is designed specifically for women by a select team of women hunters and shooters.   It is built on the best selling Vanguard platform. Available in 223 Rem., 243 Win., 308 Win., and 7MM-08 Rem.  There will also be a Weatherby Element™ 12 gauge, 26” synthetic Shotgun for the counter for the public to view. 

All attendees of the NRA Annual meeting are invited and welcome to participate in the Shoot Like A Girl experience at the trailor where they will be able to see the newly revealed Vanguard® Camilla by Weatherby.  There will also be a guest appearance from Brenda Weatherby from 2:00pm - 3:00pm on Friday and Saturday, and from 1:00pm - 2:00pm on Sunday to answer any questions you might have on Weatherby product.  

Shoot Like A Girl has earned a reputation as a company with one of the largest positive impacts on the expansion of the firearms industry.  They are growing the number of women who participate in shooting sports. Shoot Like A Girl produces remarkable results, 70% women who shoot in the trailer will commit to buying a gun.  

They look forward to celebrating their newest partner, Weatherby, and are confident that together, both will have an even greater impact on the progression of shooting sports and the achievements of women within them.

INSTRUCTORS CORNER: Why we Teach... An Inside View from SLG Instructor Brielle Eaton

I will never forget her. It was my first show, a trial to see if I had ‘it’ to become a Shoot Like A Girl Instructor. After a tough set up in the rain and a run through of range procedures, we were ready. I love teaching, it was a gift passed down from my mother who is a baby whisperer, I mean a swim teacher. I have watched countless hours of her tender and, firm but gentle approach, learning and emulating as much I could.
We were preparing for a lunch break, when a woman entered. Karen had cleared the trailer leaving only the instructors, so this woman would be free from worry and stress of critical eyes watching. As she approached the rifle station, I could see her visibly trembling, I could sense her anxiety as she approached. I introduced myself and our eyes met. Tears were brimming and I asked if she was okay. She told the story of a violent childhood, where guns were used as a scare tactic, that she had witnessed a shooting and had never held a firearm. I told her, she didn’t have to participate if she didn’t want to and I would explain the process before even letting her handle the rifle. She nodded that she wanted to continue and said something that I will admire her for forever, “I want to have courage, this is me being brave”. I smiled gently and walked her though the mechanics of loading the firearm. She shouldered the rifle and shot once, tears streamed from her eyes and she asked me to take the rifle. With the flood of emotions she needed some air and exited the trailer. To be honest, I felt a little like a failure. Only one shot? That was all I could get her through?
As I was beginning to believe the sceptics in my own mind, she came back into the trailer. She came straight to me and hugged me still weeping. She graciously thanked me and thanked me for a chance to conquer her fears. Still shocked and amazed, I thanked her for her display of courage and told her it took a lot to be that brave after all she’s been through.

I know “Instructors Corner” is supposed to be tactical advise on gear or shooting techniques to help people become better shooters. But my advice from this experience and my own life, is that being brave will be uncomfortable but to have courage in those moments. For a lot of women, shooting (bows or firearms) can be intimidating. Heck, sometimes being a woman can be overwhelming. But doing those things which we think we cannot do, makes us stronger and more confident, if not wiser. Even Shoot Like A Girl was started by a woman calling deep on her courage and being brave. So my ‘advise’ is, to find opportunities to call deep on your courage and be brave, and encourage those around you to do the same.