Nicole Aimone, Editor-in-Chief
Vortex Optics out of Barneveld recently opened an out-of-the-box training facility to offer different educational opportunities.
The Vortex Edge facility is located at the company’s headquarters, 1 Vortex Dr, in Barneveld, and offers both indoor and outdoor facilities for training of employees, local law enforcement and will soon be opening up for public instruction.
The indoor facility offers three different ranges, a 25 yard and 50 yard range, both of which are dynamic shooting ranges, and a 100 yard static range. The facility also provides simulations for training.
The outdoors facility is used for long range training and shooting up to 1050 yards. It featured barricades and shooting obstacles.
“We have both an indoor and outdoor facility at our disposal, both of which aren’t so much ‘public ranges’ in the sense that many people would think— i.e. There won’t be a way to get a card, come in any time you want, but some ammo and go blast away,” said Vortex Marketing and Social Media Director Jimmy Hamilton.
Instead of the typical shooting range, Vortex is looking to offer an education in different aspects such as pistol, carbine, long range, hunter marksmanship, home defense and night vision. The training opportunities include how to use Vortex products, how to set them up and get the most out of the product and how the company’s products can be used in different shooting situations.
“We’re aiming to make this an unforgettable shooting experience for anyone who joins us to take a course. In addition to learning a lot, we want everyone to have a ton of fun and get to do more than they ever would at their home range just sending some rounds at paper for an hour,” said Hamilton.
The facility was originally created for just internal use and only included the outdoor ranges, and two indoor ranges, said Hamilton. Within the last year, the company expanded to include the other features. The company originally used the Edge facility for product development, marketing, and new employee training.
Vortex owners wanted the space to become a location not only for the general public’s education, but also provide local law enforcement with practice situations different from their average training.
Hamilton said the company plans to host events at the Edge facility such as Hunter sight-ins, archery challenges and United States Practical Shooting Association matches.
Pricing for classes varies, and Hamilton recommends for intermediate or advanced courses people bring personal equipment but said for introduction classes the company plans to supply necessary equipment for the course.
“Certain classes are designed specifically for law enforcement (They will be labeled as such) or other firearms instructors (Also will be labeled).” said Hamilton. “To take an advanced or intermediate level course, it’s hard to ‘require’ a certain level of skill for someone to join, but we do suggest that people do their best honest assessment of their level of skill prior to signing up for a class.”
Students are required to be 18 years of age or accompanied by an adult and be U.S. citizens. If classes span over the lunch hour, the company will provide lunches to students.
Classes will be held in-person with an effort to take COVID-19 precautions, with the facility and equipment being deep cleaned regularly. Hamilton said the company will follow whatever the state requires for masking at the time of the course.
“It appears as though the statewide mandate could go away soon, in which case, we’ll let visitors choose to wear whatever they’re most comfortable with,” said Hamilton. “No shame either way from us—we’re here to learn and shoot, not argue about what’s on your face.”
For more information on the facility, class prices and to sign up, visit www.vortexoptics.com/vortex-edge.
“It’s always been our goal at Vortex to make the entire customer experience amazing from the moment someone hears our name to well beyond the day they buy the product. We look at Vortex EDGE much the same and are aiming to make it the best shooting experience in the world,” said Hamilton.