Last June, the Maricopa County Parks and Recreation Department was forced to close the General Joe Foss Shooting Complex at Buckeye Hills Regional Park while the department actively searched for a new range manager.
“Since the land falls under the Bureau of Land Management’s Recreation and Public Purposes Act, we were limited to pursuing non-profit and government agencies to manage the facility,” said R.J. Cardin, Maricopa County Parks and Recreation Director. “After going through the formal process of releasing a Letter of Interest, we have finally found a non-profit agency that meets all the criteria.”
On November 06, the Arizona State Rifle and Pistol Association (ASRPA) entered into a Special Use Permit with the department to manage the range as the agencies work together to flesh out a longer term Management Agreement.
The ASRPA is Arizona’s official state organization for the National Rifle Association and has been promoting safe and responsible firearm ownership here since 1909.
“This is good news not only for west valley residents, but also the various clubs who visit the range to practice with their firearms and hone their skills,” said Maricopa County Supervisor Clint Hickman, District 4.
“One of ASRPA’s many important purposes is to promote the construction of shooting ranges throughout Arizona, and to also assist member clubs or government agencies with the development and operation of them. So, naturally, we are pleased to be working with the county to reopen the General Joe Foss Shooting Complex,” stated Craig Joyner, Arizona State Rifle and Pistol Association President. “There is a cadre of NRA certified range masters, range officers and volunteers that have made shooting at the Joe Foss range both safe and enjoyable for the public, and I am pleased that so many of them have stepped forward once again to staff the range and keep this beautiful facility running.”
The Special Use Permit provides ASRPA the ability to manage the following facilities and amenities at the shooting complex:
- The administration and retail building which houses the office, classrooms and restrooms;
- Public training rage (50 yards; 40 shooting lanes);
- Public multi-use range (200 yards; 40 shooting lanes);
- Public Archery Range;
- Public Shotgun Range; and
- The hunter education trail
Operating hours for the range are 8 am to 2 pm on the following Saturdays and Sundays: November 11 and 12; November 18 and 19; December 9 and 10; and December 16 and 17.
Once the agencies have formalized the Management Agreement, standard operating hours and fee information for the range will be posted at maricopacountyparks.net/park-locator/buckeye-hills-regional-park/park-activities/shooting-range/.
Individuals interested in learning more about volunteer opportunities at the range are asked to send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.