Shooting range reopening set for Saturday

After undergoing extensive renovations, the shooting range at the John F. Lentz Hunter Education Complex, which is owned and operated by the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission, is now open to the public.

John Lentz

John Lentz

Officials will host a reopening from 10 a.m to 2 p.m. Saturday. For more information on the reopening, contact Jenny Harris at or call 919-707-0176. The commission named the shooting complex in honor of Ellerbe native John Franklin Lentz, a former Wildlife Commissioner and avid hunter and conservationist who passed away on Aug. 25 at the age of 87.

The shooting range has a 100-yard rifle range with six shooting lanes and a 25-yard pistol range that can be set up for either three or six shooting lanes. It also offers skeet and trap ranges, as well as a 5-stand sporting clays range, a standard archery range and a 3-D archery range.

The shooting range, which is free to use, is located at 2030 Gibson Mill Road in Ellerbe. It is open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., TuesdaySaturday, from Labor Day to Memorial Day, and from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. from Memorial Day to Labor Day. The range is closed on Sundays, Mondays and state holidays.

RangeThe Wildlife Resources Commission used hunting license receipts and Pittman-Robertson funds — 10 percent excise taxes collected from manufacturers of guns and ammunition — to renovate and manage the shooting range.

The John F. Lentz Shooting Complex is the third range the commission has constructed or renovated in the Piedmont Region this year to provide the public with more and better places to shoot. The other two shooting ranges are Flintlock Valley Shooting Range, located in the Uwharrie National Forest in Montgomery County and the Caswell Shooting Range, which opened in August on the R. Wayne Bailey-Caswell Game Land in Yanceyville.

The Commission has additional plans to construct shooting ranges in other parts of the state, according to Erik Christofferson, chief of the Commission’s Division of Engineering and Lands Management.

“As part of the agency’s mission to provide places across the state where the public can go to shoot, we will soon be constructing two shooting ranges — one in Cleveland County, which is located in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, and the other in Pender County on the Holly Shelter Game Land,” Christofferson said. “We continue to look for opportunities to build additional shooting ranges that offer a safe environment for hunters and shooting public to hone their skills.”

To keep up to date on proposed shooting ranges, visit the proposed shooting range page on the Commission’s website. For more information on shooting ranges in North Carolina, visit the shooting range page.

Filed in: Latest Headlines, Outdoors

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