PALISADE, Colo. (KREX) — The 2 Gun Nationals have finally come to the Cameo Complex sponsored by the United States Practical Shooting Association, a day the general manager has waited years for. “We’re looking to hopefully get the USPSA Nationals here which will bring a thousand people here for a week, and really, that demographic is really great spenders, great tourism dollars for the area, ” said General Manager Walt Proulx.
That was in 2018 when the Cameo Complex was open to the public. Years later, the contest off of exit 45 expected to drive economic growth for the community is closed to the public. Bay 4 isn’t where the shooters are competing in the 2 Gun PCC/Pistol Nationals. That’s because access has been restricted to only the competitors and their guests. And, because of the restricted access, there are still many unknown things about the contest including: when the contest starts, how many competitors are in the contest, and most importantly, if high capacity magazines that are illegal in Colorado are used in the contest. Mesa County Sheriff Todd Rowell told KREX on Friday, June 3, “They come here from other events in states where they allow larger capacity magazine rounds. They come here, they do the shooting event, and they move on.”
A letter from Rowell to Proulx in April 2022 claims difficulty enforcing the law, states the Sheriff’s Office won’t seek out what he refers to as “law-abiding citizens” to verify the statute, and instructs Proulx to share the letter with other competitive shooters. The sheriff sent the letter just weeks after the bill (HB22-1145) making exceptions for competitions failed to pass. “Once you open the door with one little exception, people are going to drive a train through it,” said Anne McGihon with Colorado Ceasefire in a zoom on Monday, June, 6.
Colorado Ceasefire works closely with Colorado lawmakers to enact gun reform measures. One of those lawmakers is State Senator Rhonda Fields (D) District 29 who sponsored the magazine limit law that took effect on July 1, 2013. The inspiration came after the theatre shooting on July 2012 in Aurora, CO when a gunman using a 100 round drum magazine killed 12 people in 90 seconds. “His goal was one thing: to kill as many people as he could in a shorter amount of time,” said Senator Fields. Eileen McCaron with Colordo Ceasefire says, “Even though we take efforts to try and stop these from happening again, and again, and again. That people for their sporting purposes are willing to evade the law, or skirt the law.”
Colorado Parks and Wildlife owns the Cameo Shooting and Education Complex, and claims participants will be required to sign an affidavit that they are in compliance with Colorado’s laws which ban magazines with more than 15 rounds with few exceptions.
The USPSA 2 Gun PCC/Pistol Nationals taking place at the Cameo Shooting and Education Complex will last through Sunday, June, 12. About 200 competitors are expected to be at the contest paying an entrance fee of $295 each.