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September 29
​Wake County Firearms Education and Training Center to Reopen Friday with COVID-19 Safety Measures

The Wake County Firearms Education and Training Center will reopen to the public on Friday, Oct. 2, thanks to a partnership among Wake County, the Wake County Sheriff’s Office and the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission.

“We were on track and excited to reopen the range back in March, but we had to put that on hold when the COVID-19 pandemic began,” said Greg Ford, chairman of the Wake County Board of Commissioners. “Staff from our three partner organizations have worked hard to find a way to reopen the range in a way that focuses on safety and mitigates the potential spread of COVID-19.”

The Wake County Firearms Education and Training Center, located at 3921 Old Holly Springs-Apex Road in Apex, will be open to the public from 5-9 p.m. Mondays and Fridays and from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays.

The range is free to use. All shooters must watch a range safety and etiquette video before receiving a pass to use the range. Children ages 12-17 must have a waiver signed by their legal guardian and be accompanied by an adult.

“In recent months, we’ve seen a surge in the number of people applying for permits to buy handguns,” Wake County Sheriff Gerald Baker said. “Many of these are first time gunowners, and everyone would benefit from the training and shooting experience available at the Firearms Education and Training Center.”

New safety measures will enable residents to use the range while adhering to the Three Ws to prevent the spread of COVID-19: Wearing a mask, washing hands frequently and waiting six feet apart. Staff have also implemented new policies and physical changes to the facility to prevent the spread of the coronavirus:

  • Every-other lane will be closed off to keep shooters socially distanced;
  • The public must preregister online to reserve a time and assigned space;
  • Check-in will occur outside; and
  • Chairs are spaced six feet apart in the safety training room.

“We operate 14 ranges across the state, and we’re proud to partner with Wake County and the Wake County Sheriff’s Office to give Wake County residents a place to practice shooting and learn firearm safety,” said Kristopher Smith, N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission wildlife education division chief. “COVID-19 created new challenges, and we have worked with our partners to provide this service while preventing the spread of the virus.”

There are no retail operations at the Wake County Firearms Education and Training Center. Visitors should bring their own targets, ammunition, ear and eye protection and anything else they plan to use.

The N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission has created a website with information about how the range will operate for the public.

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