Themed shooting matches and competitions have been a thing for decades now, with participants lining up in droves to show off their prowess with period weapons. The most popular of these matches at the moment — called Cowboy Action Shooting — is patterned after westerns and the duel-at-noon-in-front-of-the-courthouse days of old.
Competitors wearing cowboy hats and ornately-embossed leather holsters still go loud at the sound of the timer's unforgettably annoying beep, but instead of tricked-out Glocks and high-speed ARs, they run old-school revolvers, Henry lever-actions rifles and other guns you might have encountered back in the days of the wild west.
Now, westerns are cool and all, but those of us who grew up with the likes of Sonny Crockett and Colonel Hannibal Smith gracing our television screens with gratuitous violence and cheesy one-liners have felt largely left out... at least until now.
This September will see the Talon Range at Midway, Florida, host the first ever retro-themed competition revolving around the 1970s, 80s and 90s era. Designed to give firearms enthusiasts who grew up in that period an outlet for their nostalgic interests, this competition is virtually guaranteed to take participants on a fun ride down memory lane.
The competition will be hosted by the Retro Wave Shooting league, which hopes to: “provide a safe, fun, and inclusive competitive multigun environment for shooters to use iconic firearms of the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s, and to encourage the incorporation of costuming and personal “legends” of the Generation X era.”According to the RWS event page, the Florida match will be partitioned into four divisions: Poly-blend, Denim, Merino and Ballistic Nylon.
All divisions which require the competitor to use period-correct guns. That means no G19X or SIG P320s... you’re gonna need to bring something authentic or relevant to the era. Old TV shows like The A-Team and Knight Rider are chock full of ideas... just saying.
Additionally, you can’t use competition-style gear — only carry or duty gear. The RWS also strongly encourages participants to dress themselves for the match too, though it isn’t a requirement.
Take it from us, don't show up without a blazer with rolled sleeves, or a Hawaiian-print shirt and Ray Bans Wayfarers perched on your face.
People will laugh at you if you don't, and you will deserve it.
So if you’d like to be Tom Magnum or Martin Riggs for a day, dust off the old Mini 14 or a Bren Ten (if you can find one) and sign yourself up for more information at the RWS Facebook event page.
Maybe you could gun as hard as Jim Zubiena did in Miami Vice: