Shoot Smart, which will soon open its third location in Benbrook, has revolutionized the local shooting scene.
Fort Worth’s Shoot Smart has generated accolades and won recognition as the best shooting range in Fort Worth. The reason why? Because it takes the concept of the ‘shooting range’ to a whole different level. A forward-thinking establishment that keeps the comfort, safety, and fun of its guests at the forefront, Shoot Smart has rapidly expanded on the basis of its popularity.
Since its foundation in 2011, the original Fort Worth location at 10305 North I—35 has expanded to a sister location in Grand Prairie at 2440 W. Main St. This summer, area residents can experience the Shoot Smart experience at a brand new location, conveniently located in Benbrook at 9455 Benbrook Boulevard.
The Shoot Smart story began in 2010, when the owners failed in their search to find a clean, pleasant place to shoot. Unwilling to compromise when it came to their patronage of a range, they decided to open one themselves.
“The owners just wanted a nice place to shoot,” says Jared Sloane, operations manager of Shoot Smart. “They found a location, opened in March of 2011, and it was off to the races. We became real popular, real quick.”
This popularity paid off in a huge clientele, eager to take advantage of Shoot Smart’s amenities and friendly atmosphere. Local response was so enthusiastic, in fact, that a second location came hot on the heels of the first.
“That first holiday season, we had long wait times,” says Jared. “Because of that, we decided to accelerate the growth of the business and built out the second phase of the first store.”
In December of 2012, tragedy struck in Newtown, Connecticut. The incident caused a wave of grief and anger around the country, with repercussions felt across the political and public sphere.
“The tragedy generated a lot of anxiety and grief, and the industry was rocked hard,” says Jared. “It became hard to find supplies and inventory. We had a lot of strong relationships with businesses that helped us make it through, when a lot of ranges did not.”
One of those that didn’t, a local competitor, contacted Shoot Smart in 2013 with a buyout proposal. The Shoot Smart team completed the acquisition that summer and fall, and opened a second store in Grand Prairie.
“Now we have Benbrook,” says Jared, “which we’ve worked on for a year-and-a-half. We wanted an opportunity in southwest Fort Worth, and we found it.”
The Benbrook location, slated to open in late May or early June, puts to work all the lessons that Shoot Smart has learned. Private suites represent a unique feature that will see ample representation at the Benbrook site. Privacy brings with it a sense of safety and confidence, and new shooters especially will enjoy the amenity. The Benbrook location will have six of these private suites, in addition to seven traditional lanes. All lanes are set to feature two-way video and voice communication with the Shoot Smart control station, which makes it a breeze to rent a new firearm or order more ammunition.
“You go in and have your private space,” says Jared. “People like their own environment, because it creates a sense of safety and confidence. We get a lot of new customers, and the private suites are a great option for someone learning the shooting sports.”
New customers represent a large part of Shoot Smart’s business. Approximately half of their clientele on any given day has never visited a shooting range before. Education thus becomes a big part of Shoot Smart’s business.
“We’ve introduced customers to shooting for our entire existence,” says Jared. “We work to show people it’s okay, that shooting has a lot of entertainment value, not to mention it’s rooted in tradition. This area is rapidly growing, and people arrive from areas where it’s not normal or acceptable to own a firearm.”
Shoot Smart seeks to break through these barriers, and showcase the fun, challenge, and competitiveness of shooting at the range. In addition to shooting, the Shoot Smart experience includes training. If you’ve never picked up a gun before, but have become interested in this fun and challenging hobby, you can join a comprehensive suite of classes that will get you trained quickly, thoroughly, and responsibly. To learn more about Shoot Smart, enroll in classes or learn about memberships, visit www.shootsmart.com.