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July 09, 2009

Lock and load - indoor gun range coming

Looking for a local spot to empty a clip into a target without worrying about the weather?

A Rochester gun shop owner is taking a shot at creating an indoor shooting range.

Gary Schoenmann, who owns American Gunsmith & Gun Shop in northeast Rochester, is building a 5,700-square-foot facility with seven shooting lanes and a retail area in the Elgin Industrial Park.

“There is a great demand for it,” he says. “We think it will be a pretty big hit.”

Construction of the new Patriot Indoor Range & Gun Shop is under way. The hope is for it to be finished between late August and early September.

Schoenmann and his wife, Kristi, are teaming up with Frank and Julene Horstman of Plainview in the new project.


“Frank brings to the table his military experience as a gun trainer, and Julene also does training, particularly in self-defense courses for women,” Schoenmann says.

The plan is to make training a big part of the Patriot range, offering classes for youth and adults with skill levels ranging from novice to advanced.

He also hopes to strike group-plan agreements with area law enforcement agencies for their officers to use the range.

Right now, Schoenmann plans on keeping his American gun shop in Rochester open even after the Patriot range fires up. However, he expects to eventually shift all of the retail to the Elgin site, though the gunsmithing will remain in Rochester.

Once all chambers are firing at the range, Schoenmann estimates about six to seven people will staff it. He expects to attract customers from an 85-mile radius, if the Patriot Indoor Range hits the bullseye he is aiming for.


This is GREAT news. There is a very real demand for this. Wish it were in Rochster but I will make the drive.

I think tapping into the small-town law enforcement market is brilliant. Most smaller departments can't afford their own gun ranges like Rochester's.

Great, now i can practice for the gangs-get my aim just right.

This will make many local law enforcement and military people very happy! Much luck.

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