The Appleseed Project

Jackson's 4th birthday 024

Several weeks ago, Daisy and I were invited to participate in an Appleseed Project event, by a super awesome guy named Dave.   If you’re like I was before I got that invitation, you have absolutely no idea what the Appleseed Project is.  But I’m about to tell you, and you guys, it’s really really cool.

Dave’s initial email to us described the Appleseed Project as an all-volunteer organization dedicated to preserving the heritage of the Rifleman in America.  And what that means from a practical perspective is that for two days, you get trained on firearm safety and marksmanship, AND you get to hear cool stories about American history – specifically the history of April 19th, 1775, and why marksmanship was so important to winning the Revolutionary War. 

I thought it sounded totally fabulous, and told Dave that Mr. Mock and I would love to attend.  Daisy, as you know, is all pregnant and pregnified and pregnosticated, and apparently women who are in that sort of state are not generally advised to be around firearms, so she didn’t go.  But I have a feeling that she’ll not only go to a future event, she’ll probably be bringing Chicklet too, and both of them will probably shoot in stilettos.  :)

Anyway, Mr. Mock and I got up at 5am to make the 2.5 hour journey north to the firing range.  Now, I have shot a rifle exactly ONCE in my whole life prior to today. But even that one time, I was kind of awesome.  I’m not trying to brag, because if you ask me what sort of a marksman I am, I will tell you that I’m not one at all, and in fact have absolutely no idea how I manage to shoot stuff well.  But I DO shoot stuff well, in spite of myself.

The day started off kind of rough, because almost the moment we got there, our host Dave slipped on an icy patch of ground, and hit his head.  After a hospital check, he returned to the range with a slight concussion, but we didn’t get to spend much time with him which was a shame, because he and his wife were PRECIOUS.  

Anyway, the instructors were all terrific.  They really stress the importance of safety, and provide one on one instruction to anyone who needs help.  They teach you how to shoot accurately, how to correctly adjust your sights, and how to read your target so that you know why your shots went where they did.  And you learn to shoot prone, sitting, and standing – and how to transition properly in and out of those positions.

And even though that’s super cool, what’s even cooler is that mixed in with all of the instruction is story telling about the American Revolution.  It’s like history class, only taught by cool dudes who let you shoot at stuff DURING CLASS.  The only thing missing from today was toasted marshmallows.

Even though it’s a two-day event, and we were only able to participate today, I would recommend the program to ANYONE who has an interest in learning proper rifle handling and likes a little history thrown in.  They do these all over the country, and in fact have had over 20,000 people attend an Appleseed in the past three years! 

The bummer about today (aside from Dave getting hurt) is that my stupid bum wrist started acting up and the strap on my rifle started to prevent me from being quite as awesome towards the end of the day at shooting my targets as I was at the very beginning of the day, when I was pain-free.  And that’s kind of the opposite of what’s supposed to happen – seeing as how you spend the day learning how to be a good marksman.  Still – I know Mr. Mock got a lot of out of it, and you could definitely see how much better he got after implementing the techniques he learned.

It was really fun, you guys.  If you’re looking for a really cool family event, you should totally do it!

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11 Responses to “The Appleseed Project”

  • It was truly a pleasure working with you and Mr Mock today. You both did real good. I feel bad now because I saw your wrist being chafed by the sling but I didn’t say anything because you didn’t ask for help and I didn’t want to bother one of the top shooters at todays shoot. The rifle didn’t fit you real well which was the major part of the pain you experienced. I hope to see both of you again on the Appleseed trail. Next time bring your own rifle….

  • I’m already shopping for a Chicklet Glock to match her Mommy’s. :-)

  • While I have been handling rifles, shot guns, and hand guns my whole life, I really wouldn’t mind seeing this project come to California. I would participate.

  • It is in California! We have Appleseed shoots all over the country, now., and look for the ’schedule’ link on the side bar. :D

  • This sounds very cool, and I wish we had something like this up here in Canada. Unfortunately, with our gun laws being what they are (mandatory registration of all guns, you need to be licensed even to *borrow* a gun or buy ammunition), that’s not going to happen any time soon.

  • Women have a reputation for being quick to pick up target shooting. Seriously. A marine told me that and I’m not about to argue with him about it.

  • Thank you for the kind words and thank you for coming out. It was a pleasure to have you and all the shooters that ventured out on what was a chilly morning start to a beautiful day… I hope to see you again on the trail and if I don’t, I know that you will be back to another Appleseed event. This weekend continued on and we did get a Rifleman score Sunday afternoon. Nick (the AR a couple places down from you) made a 220. Jason was also close.

    Sincerely – WRWIII

  • All we ask is bring a teachable attitude. Very often, female humans arrive with a better teachable attitude than male humans. Also, a complete neophyte does not have to unlearn incorrect shooting habits.

    Even though there are always loaner rifles available at the events, we would like for you to bring your own rifle so that you can become intimate with it. A .22 LTR (Liberty Teaching Rifle), such as a Ruger 10-22, is fine for learning. Soon you will gaze lustfully on the M1’s and M1A’s and AR’s on the line. As a rifleman, you will need to be skilled with your own center fire rifle.

    We are exceptionally pleased that you came and enjoyed your first Appleseed. It usually takes an attendee 2 to 4 events to shoot a score of 210 or better to earn their Rifleman’s badge. Plan for
    future events now. See the schedule at:

    Remember, Women (adult female humans), children (under 21), active duty military, and elected officials shoot free. All instructors are 100% volunteer. Most do not even ask for reimbursement of expenses.

    Thank you for stepping up to improve your skills and to help our country.

  • Mock, I can not apologize enough for not “being there” Saturday, but I knew you were in good hands. I am very happy to see you and Mr. Mock had a good time, and I hope I get to spend some range time with you both in the future.

    Our big splash is Patriot’s Day each year, the anniversary of Lexington and Concord. Next year that will be the weekend of April 17th and 18th. We strive to have as many Americans on the line across the country as possible. The Chicks could not pick a better weekend to attend, plenty of time to plan…

    GCB, wish no more…. Get on the board and see what you can do to make a Canadian Appleseed happen.


  • Thanks Daniel!!! I will definitely be checking this out.

  • Laurel

    I’m one of the California area coordinators, feel free to contact me on our working board or at my email, just tack my screen name in front of

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