Family-friendly gun range offering birthday parties for kids

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by TERESA WOODARD

WFAA

Posted on June 1, 2012 at 10:00 PM

Updated Saturday, Jun 2 at 3:19 PM

Eagle Gun Range

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LEWISVILLE -- Instead of a groundbreaking Friday afternoon, David Prince had a block-breaking.

He and his investors used hammers to crush concrete blocks, similar to what he'll install along the walls of a building inside a Lewisville industrial park. Prince is building what he is proud to call "one of the highest quality state-of-the-art air-conditioned gun ranges in Texas."

There are still office cubicles inside the 17,000 square foot facility, but he's about to transform it all into a 24-lane indoor firing-range aimed at experts and novices.

Real novices.

Eagle Gun Range will host birthday parties for kids.

"One of the reasons we're doing this is, when I had my boys, I didn't have a place to take them and educate them about how to handle a gun safely,"  Prince explained. "I really want families to be able to take their kids here and teach their young shooters how to shoot safely."

Two rooms will be available for birthday parties.

"The age limit is eight years old. You have to be tall enough to get above the shooting table,” Prince said. “They're not gonna be left unattended. Parents are gonna be one-on-one, or if there's not enough parents we'll have range safety officers here to show them how to do it safely."

"We're gonna do a lot of education here at this range," he added.

The kickoff party Friday drew a big crowd and Prince was being well-received by his neighbors in Lewisville.

Denton County Commissioner Hugh Coleman said he was happy to have the facility in Lewisville.

"I am thrilled to add jobs and add to the tax base, and I think gun rights are for everyone," he said.

But some see things in a different way. Dawn McMullan is a mom raising two sons in East Dallas, and she's done some gun control advocacy in the past.

"It makes me very nervous," she said. "I think eight-year-olds, developmentally, can't tell the difference between play and reality sometimes."

"And also to put it in a party or game atmosphere just seems to not respect a gun as much as we should respect guns," she said.

But Prince said respect is exactly what he'll be teaching.

"We truly believe it's a right and a privilege to shoot and to bear arms," he said. "But you have a responsibility to know how to do it well. It's your responsibility to know how to take care of your gun and know how to use it."

"Ignorance is not bliss in this situation," he added. "Until they outlaw guns, people are gonna have access to them and should have access to them. And they need to be educated. Take the mystery out of the guns."

Eagle Gun Range expects to open for business sometime in the late summer or early fall.

E-mail twoodard@wfaa.com

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