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10-01-14-cigars-&-guns.gifIt’s no secret that being a soldier or a law enforcement officer is dangerous. But the work is vital to the safety of our nation. Volunteers selflessly step up to handle the business of the American people every day. Tragically, it sometimes means that families are left without their soldier or police officer who have fallen in the line of duty and they carry on.

Gary Clarke is one of the Founders of North Carolina Tactical Response and Community Care, a nonprofit designed to help bridge the gap for survivors of heroes who have made the ultimate sacrifice. On Saturday, Oct. 4, NCTRACC is partnering with The Range Complex for Cigars and Guns, a fundraiser to benefit NCTRACC.

Clarke and some of his friends came up with the idea for the event.

“It just seemed like a natural fit,” he said. “When I was a team leader for the Cumberland County SWAT team, we enjoyed our jobs and many of us liked fine hand-rolled cigars. We wanted to bring people together and also benefit a nonprofit and this seemed like a good way to do that.”

The main attraction is the 3-gun competition.

“The team at The Range Complex has designed a pretty nice realistic scenario-based course with different shooting positions and different platforms and things like that to provide some interesting challenges to the competitors,” said Clarke. “The main thing to is to give people a chance to watch these professionals from military and law enforcement do what they train for every day. There are some guys that are really good with weaponry and they will compete. It will be entertaining to watch what they do for a living and see them for compete for time and accuracy.”

There is still time for competitors to enter the event.

“This is only open to military and law enforcement personnel to compete,” said Clarke. “We are very serious about safety and making sure that no one gets hurt. Law enforcement and military members have a good understanding of range protocol and safety along with the kind of training that will make this a fun event for them. This is going to be a lot of fun to watch, too, because so many of these guys are experts at what they do.”

While Clarke sees this as a fun event for weapon enthusiasts, it is also a good way for families to come and see their soldier or law enforcement officer in action.

“A lot of these wives and kids don’t really have a good idea of what goes on at work for their loved one, so this is a chance to meet other family members, too,” he said.

There will be an air-soft shoot house, face painting, vendors, food and more. And, of course, fine hand-rolled cigars provided by Anstead’s Tobacco Company.

“Since it is so close to Halloween, we decided to dress up the shoot house for the kids and turn it into a zombie house,” said Clarke. “There will be plenty to see and do here, and the proceeds definitely benefit a good cause.”

Tickets cost $7, children under 10 get in free. The event starts at 8 a.m. and runs until 5 p.m. Find out more at http://proshop.therangecomplex.com/cigars-and-guns-3-gun-competition.aspx or by calling 910-670-4790.

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