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All minor scouts participating in archery, bbguns, rifle, pistol, shotgun, airsoft, pellet guns must have parents/guardian sign the GEC Parental Shooting Sports Form event if the parent is on the range with the scouts. 

GEC Parental Shooting Sports Form

Shooting Sports- FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions……..BSA Rangemaster VS NRA Instructor Certification

BSA Rangemasters provide instruction to cub scouts for:

BBguns, air rifles, tomahawks, sling shots, rockets, catapults, and rubberband guns. (BSA Rangemaster certification is taught by a certified NRA Rifle and Archery Level 1 Instructor)

BSA Rangemasters provide instruction to cub scouts for:

Archery (Taught by a certified Level One or higher archery instructor.)

BSA Rangemasters provide instruction to Boy Scout, Venturing, and Council training' for:

Tomahawks, slingshots, rockets, catapults, and rubberband guns.

Note: A BSA Rangemaster can NOT be incharge of a Boy Scout, Venturing BBG/Air Rifles, Rifle, Shotgun, Pistol and Archery ranges, but can help on the range.

Who needs the Rangemaster certification?

  • Adult volunteers on a Cub Scout archery, BB gun/air pistol range for day camp and council/district events only. Also for slingshots, rockets, catapults and rubberband guns. (Note: Cub Scout dens/packs cannot hold their own shooting events)
  • AND Boy Scout, and Venturer leaders teaching tomahawks, slingshots, rockets, catapults and rubber band guns at council/district events.

For Cub Scout BB gun & Archery district/council ranges (Including slingshots, rockets, and catapults.)

  • For every 8 shooters you must have:
    • One BSA Certified Rangemaster and for;
    • Tiger Cubs-Must have their adult partner with them on the range as their coach; and
    • Slingshot ranges-A parent/adult must be behind the cubscout at all times when they are shooting on the range. 

For Boy Scout and Venturing BBgun, Rifle, Shotgun

  • For every 8 shooters you must have;
    • One NRA Range Safety Officer- (NRA RSO is a Safety Person only, on the range and is not an instructor)
    • AND  One certified NRA Instructor trained in one of the following disciplines for the appropriate range:
  • Rifle; BB guns; and air rifle ranges --- Certified NRA Rifle Instructor
  • Shotgun Range- Certified NRA Shotgun Instructor and RSO for every six-shooters.
    • Pistol Range and high-power firearms are reserved for youth involved in the Venturing and Sea Scouting programs only. Range requirement: One Certified NRA Pistol Instructor per shooter for open shooting and one NRA RSO for every three shooters.  For an ongoing Shooting Sports pistol program, the ratio changes to one NRA instructor per two shooters while loading and shooting. For more on ranges and levels of shooting requirements, see shooting sports manual pages 9-40
    • Program/pdf/30931_WB.pdf
  • Range Inspection:  All ranges must be inspected and approved by a GEC NRA Chief RSO if it is NOT a commercial range/BSA Camp range. Specific paperwork must be filled out and signed by a NRA Chief RSO and signed by the program council executive to be kept on file for 2 years. The range inspection sheet is good for 2 years if no changes are made during the 2 year period. This paperwork and instructions can be found on the BSA National site-“Procedures to use Public or Private Property for a Shooting Sports Range.” (Exception-Cub Scout BBgun ranges are inspected differently.)

For Golden Empire Council Boy Scout and Venturing Archery Ranges

  • For every 8 shooters you must have;
    • One Archery Level 1 or higher certified instructor

LaPorte Archery

  • One Archery Level 1 or higher certified instructor
  • 3 people on the range at a time

For a Boy Scout, Venturing or Council training event; tomahawks, slingshots, rockets, catapults, and rubber band gun ranges:

Who teaches the BSA Rangemaster and NRA RSO, Rifle, Shotgun & Pistol Instructor certifications?

  • Level 1 or higher archery instructors teach the BSA Rangemaster Archery Certification
  • NRA Rifle Instructors teach the BSA Rangemaster Certification for BB Gun & Air Rifles (Class instruction also includes information for tomahawks, catapults, slingshots, rockets and rubber band guns).
  • NRA Training Counselors teach the Black Powder, Rifle, Shotgun, or Pistol instructor course.
  • NRA Rifle Instructors teach the Rifle Merit badge and basic rifle course.
  • NRA Shotgun Instructors teach the Shotgun Merit Badge and basic shotgun course.
  • NRA Pistol Instructors teach Pistol marksmanship for Venturer Scouts.
  • NRA Range Safety Officers (RSO) training is taught by an NRA Chief Range Safety Officer (CRSO)
  • Note: Level 1 or above archery instructors can teach a BSA Rangemaster class for Cub Scout day camps/district/council archery events and NRA certified rifle instructors can teach a BSA Rangemaster class for Cub Scout BBgun, and air rifle day camps/district/council events.

Who needs the RSO, Rifle, Shotgun & Pistol certifications?

  • A GEC Rifle & Shotgun Merit Badge Counselor must hold a rifle/shotgun NRA certification.
  • Boy Scout/Venturing rifle, shotgun, pistol, bbgun airsoft must have one NRA instructor per required scout ratio's mandated in the shooting sports manual.
  • Range Inspections: For units/leaders who take their scouts on non-commercial or non-BSA Camp rifle, pistol and shotgun ranges. (See range inspection information on page 2)

Do Boy Scouts, Venturer, Varsity Scouts and adults need training before they enter a shooting range?

Yes, all scouts (including adults) participating in a discipline; a rifle shot gun and pistols (Venturers and Sea Scouts can shoot pistols) event must be given a 30-minute briefing by a certified NRA rifle, shotgun/pistol instructor for each discipline. Each archery participant must attend a 30-minute briefing by a trained Level 1 or higher instructor. A GEC Shooting Sports training card is issued by their instructor and must be shown at each range. This shooting sports card is good for 2 years. (Similar to a totem chip card). Additional instruction is given at each range before a scout begins shooting.

For more on the BSA Shooting Sports Program click:         

    Read/download the manual and be sure to read the updates located on the BSA website.

For Instructors

The GEC Shooting Sports Task Force has power-point instruction materials to help instructors with their training. Any GEC NRA Certified Instructor/Level 1 or above archery instructor may provide the 30-minute disciplines to scouts. Any GEC NRA Certified Rifle Instructor can teach a BSA Rangemaster certification class. Power points and training cards are available for BSA Rangemaster instruction for BBgun, archery, and tomahawks by contacting Dennis Weiss

Training Discounts for Scouting Volunteers

The GEC Shooting Sports Task Force has negotiated with a few NRA Certified Training Counselors to provide a special “BSA Training Price”. The specific discount amount is at the discretion of each instructor and trainees must be an active and registered BSA adult volunteer. Each trainee is asked to donate their available time to future GEC shooting events for at least 2 years to help scouts learn the valuable lessons of safe gun handling and operation. Go to upcoming training dates and special shooting events at

Our shooting sports Facebook page is located at Golden Empire Council Shooting Sports

GEC Shooting Sports page:

For questions ask your District Shooting Sports Chair or email


251 Commerce Circle
Sacramento, CA 95815

phone: (916) 929-1417

Hours of Operation:
8:30am - 5:00pm (M-F)
Closed Saturday & Sunday

River City Scout Shop

251 Commerce Circle
Sacramento, CA 95815

phone: (916) 649-1800

Hours of Operation:
9:00am - 6:00pm (M,T,TR,F)
9:00am - 6:30pm (W)
10:00am - 4:00pm (Saturday)
Closed Sunday

NorCal Scout Shop - Chico

3881 Benater Way, Suite D
Chico, CA 95928

phone: (530) 809-0400

Hours of Operation:
11:00am - 6:00pm (W-F)
10:00am - 2:00pm (Saturday)
Closed Sunday, Monday & Tuesday

Order of the Arrow - Amangi Nacha