BAKER — "There are several ranges around (Okaloosa County) but nothing that is going to look like this — nothing that is going to be run like this," Elijah Bell, of Jay, said.
He was practicing his shooting skills at K&M Precision Rifle Training’s Feb. 22 open house.
In addition to four pistol-and-carbine shooting bays, the facility has a 1,000-yard range and 10 additional ranges that offer distances from 50 to 800 yards. K&M also offers training courses with topics that range from helping local hunters to helping members prepare for competitions.
"The original intent of the facility was building ... one of the nation’s best shooting facilities," co-owner Shannon Kay said.
However, Kay — who serves with the 6th Ranger Training Battalion at Eglin Air Force Base — and co-owner Bryan Morgan, vice president of Morgan Contracting in Baker, primarily built the facility for competition and training purposes.
"The facility was designed from a training aspect but with members’ needs always a close second," Kay said. "However, it serves both purposes extremely well given the current growth and trends across long range, pistol and multi-gun shooting disciplines."
Range rules and regulations are covered during orientation, which prospective members must attend before joining. A sign reminding members of the rules appears in the pavilion, where members often congregate.
Since the facility’s opening more than a year ago, K&M has hosted several national and regional shooting events.
The facility has hosted two events for the Precision Rifle Series, which “takes the nation’s best shooters from across the country”; K&M will host the series’ finale in December, Kay said.
The facility also hosts several in-house competitions, the dates of which regularly appear on kmprecisionrifletraining.com.
Some members travel great distances to use the facility for practice or to compete in the hosted competitions, Morgan said.
"We have some members that live in Atlanta and Houston," he said.
Others go to K&M to train.
"We have active duty police officers ... current active military who are members," Morgan said. "It’s a way for them to sustain their required training and skills."
Seth Randle, an Arizona native staying in Niceville for Army Explosive Ordinance Disposal training, visited the facility for the first time during the open house.
"This is probably one of the only civilian ranges where you can shoot from a thousand yards," he said.
"Out of all the shooting ranges I have been to, this beats them all."
Want to go?
Visit kmprecisionrifletraining.com for more information on joining K&M Precision Rifle Training.
Contact News Bulletin Staff Writer Matthew Brown at 850-682-6524 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @cnbMatthew.