Updated: 07/18/2014 6:25 PM
Created: 07/18/2014 4:50 PM WDIO.com
By: Briggs LeSavage
The Wisconsin State Fast Draw Championships kicked off with a Charity Shoot Friday to benefit both the Superior Disabled American Veterans clinic and the city's Courage Center.
The Black River Bandits, a Superior-based cowboy fast draw club, were shooting at the Head of the Lake Fairgrounds and collecting donations for the two organizations.
It's the beginning of a three-day tournament that brings together nationally ranked fast draw shooters. Tony Orman is one of the club's members who will be competing and said, for him, it's largely about the fun.
"Safety and fun are our two major missions here," Orman said. "We have a youth program where we teach kids gun safety as well as how to use this stuff safely and have fun. We dress the period because that's kind of what it's all about is having fun in the period."
Orman said in fast draw, it's all about drawing your gun and hitting the target the fastest.
"We have some that shoot down in the 300ths of a second," Orman said. "I shoot sometimes ... in the a half second, but everybody tries to beat everybody else."
Orman said there will be about 50 competitors at the weekend's events, many dressed up in old west attire and using cowboy-themed equipment.
Debbie Stadin has been competing in fast draw since 2009 and won third place in a national tournament a few weeks ago. She said what she most enjoy's isn't the competition.
"We are one, big family. In fast draw, it's safety first, fun second, competition third and the fun is the big thing. ... The socialization the visiting and the being with the cowboy fast draw family is the best for me," Stadin said.
Everybody who competes with the Black River Bandits has to go through gun safety training before they are allowed to shoot.
The tournament continues Saturday at 8 a.m.
Brookston Man Killed in Head-on Crash Near Floodwood
The Minnesota State Patrol says a head-on collision has killed a 19-year-old Brookston man. They say a MnDOT snow plow truck and a Chevy Silverado collided head-on on Highway 2 near Floodwood.
Up-Close Look at Winter Layup in the Port
U.S. Flag Fleets transport more than 115 million tons of cargo per year, but all of that weight combined with last year's heavy ice, means a lot of repair damage during this year's winter layup.
Beargrease 2015: Crossing the Finish Line
For first-time mushers and veterans, there's just something about crossing that Beargrease finish line. Erin Altemus, who took fourth place in the marathon, said it's the same for the dogs. "There is a psychological thing about that," she said. "They sort of understand that they're at the end."
Anderson Takes Top Spot in Tight Beargrease Finish
After more than 300 miles on the trail, musher Ryan Anderson and his team clinched first place in the 31st annual John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon. His team of 11 pulled into the finish line at Billy's Bar in Duluth just before 3 a.m. Wednesday. This is Anderson's second full-distance win. He won the marathon back in 2011 when he beat out musher Nathan Schroeder by just 20 seconds
17-Time Beargrease Finisher 'A Special Musher'
Four-time Beargrease champion Jamie Nelson finished the marathon for the 17th time on Wednesday. Her handler and longtime friend says her success and longevity is no coincidence. "Jamie's a special musher."