The Ware Gun Shop houses an NRA- and state-certified shooting range in its basement.
During courses, instructors supply rental firearms equipped for laser exercises or live-fire ammunition.
Despite its store's name, the staff at Ware Gun Shop does't just sell firearms—though it does feature a changing stock of equipment and accessories from brands such as Smith & Wesson, Ruger, Beretta, and Remington. Each week, the firearms experts—each of whom holds certification from the NRA as well as the Massachusetts State Police—conduct a safety course and explain the proper way to handle firearms.
A distinguished marksman for the US Marine Corps who trained his fellow Marines in pistol and rifle shooting, Sergeant Matt Foster now helms a team of coed firearms instructors. Teaching classes such as the NRA Basic Pistol Shooting Course, an state pistol-permit class, and a women's-only session, the instructors rely on a TPI training method—an acronym for Total Participant Involvement—that emphasizes one-on-training and encourages students to go at their own pace to maximize skill retention.
Since 1907, Flamig Farm has developed into a reputable educational-resource facility complete with an extensive petting zoo. Visitors can frolic with emus, ducks, and sheep, then cuddle with bunnies and piglets. Though not included in this Groupon, the farm offers several other activities, including pony rides, hikes, and hayrides. The farm closes when the weather gets cold, so be sure to visit before animals migrate to Hollywood and resume their winter jobs as fast-food commercial spokesmen.
An outdoorsman since birth and G. Loomis–endorsed guide, GSOutfitting's owner, Eric Gass, grew up hunting and fishing the Pioneer Valley and Berkshires. After graduating from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, Eric returned to guiding and now fishes and hunts with his faithful gordon setter, Duncan, by his side.
Eric leads fly-fishing trips aboard his 13.5-foot Aire drift raft, as well as local hunting trips for turkey and grouse. GSOutfitting also trains gun dogs and companion dogs, ensuring every hunter will have a loyal sidekick during the season.
The NRA-certified instructors of Your Pistol Permit have one goal: to instill in their students responsible handgun practices as outlined by the National Rifle Association. To do this, they lead the NRA Basic Pistol Shooting course, blending both classroom and range training so students feel comfortable handling a firearm and auditioning for the next Police Academy movie. Along with demonstrating the proper mindset needed to responsibly operate a handgun, instructors teach terminology, stance, loading and unloading, and firearm cleaning. They also offer private instruction for clients who prefer training tailored to their skill level.
Lifelong paintballers Glen Kapostas and Eric Schreiber founded Yankee Paintball with the aim of introducing new people to their favorite sport on a safe and fair playing field. Their 50 acres of paint-strewn battlegrounds include five different fields, each with a distinct layout and environment. Inflatable obstacles are scattered throughout the Airball Field, the layout of which changes every few weeks to enhance replay value. The 10-acre Castle Field—the largest of the bunch—spans the length of a small hill. Its battlegrounds light up with multi-colored crossfire during team games in which players crouch in bunkers, take shelter behind trees, and hide in the crowded nests of woodland critters.