Black Powder

The Calusa Country Longrifles is a NMLRA chartered club that is part of a 3,500 member, multi-discipline gun club, the Port Malabar Rifle and Pistol Club (PMRPC) located on a 122 acre facility in Palm Bay, Florida. The Black Powder range is a separate and secluded range that is open to all PMRPC members and guests 7 days a week.

The Calusa Country Longrifles were originally chartered in the early1980s and were an active club of over thirty members that hosted a few of the NMLRA’s old Levi Garrett Territorial Matches. But over time, the aging and passing of the founding members, and the national decline in the number of traditional black powder shooters, the club shrank into near non-existence with only about a half dozen active shooters left. About four years ago a few of the PMRPC black powder shooters decided to try to pump some new life into the group. We re-chartered the Calusa Country Longrifles with only eight members and started pushing muzzle loading within the PMRPC gun club and in the surrounding community.

People come by the black powder range to see what it’s all about and we push them to give it a try right then and there. One of our shooters will take them under his or her wing, supplying the gun, accessories, and one-on-one instruction. Most people take us up on the offer and nobody has ever said they didn’t enjoy it. While actively trying to expose and recruit people to black powder shooting, we have earned the reputation of being “the friendliest group in the gun club”. We’ve gotten a number of people started out in muzzle loading that way. We’re over twenty members now and slowly growing again.

The Black Powder Range is a nice, small facility with 25, 50 and 100 yard berms and target frames, a muzzle loading shotgun patterning board and a hawk and knife throwing block. We are able to accommodate about 20 shooters on the line at once.

Blackpowder News
Blackpowder News

A number of our members are very experienced shooters and hobby gun makers. One member holds some NMLRA national pistol records. The Calusa Country Longrifles also has four active NMLRA Field Representatives and three certified muzzle loading instructors to support our activities. All of us readily help the less experienced shooters if any problems appear. We are proud of our club and strive to keep it as safe and fun as possible.

The Calusa Country Long Rifles has scheduled shoots the 2nd and 4th Saturday of each month. Except in the summer, we usually have competition on the 2nd Saturday and just a fun shoot on the 4th Saturday. During the oppressive summer heat of inland central Florida, we just have more informal fun shoots and tell tall stories of our imagined prowess with a muzzle loader until it cools down in the fall. For fall, winter, and spring competitive shoots we also like to have a potluck luncheon following award presentation.