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Just like the return of the red-winged blackbird, another true sign of spring’s arrival is the annual reopening of the Ohio Division of Wildlife’s Class “A” shooting ranges. Public shooting ranges operated by the ODNR Division of Wildlife in District One will open for the year on February 27th. Two different counties in central Ohio (Delaware and Fayette counties) offer rifle, pistol, shotgun, and archery ranges.
Ranges are classified by the type of facilities offered and whether they are supervised. A Class “A” range requires a shooting range permit for all persons 18 years and older. Shooters age 17 and under are not required to purchase a permit, but must be accompanied by and directly monitored by an adult (age 18 years or older) holding a valid shooting range permit. Range permits are available at all hunting and fishing license outlets and online at www.WildOhio.com. Permits are not sold at the ranges and must be purchased before arriving. Also, please remember to bring your own single sheet paper targets and target holder.
In central Ohio, Delaware Wildlife Area in Delaware County and Deer Creek Wildlife Area in Fayette County offer Class “A” ranges. They are open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily Wednesday through Sunday beginning February 27th. Opening day and hours of operation for other Class “A” ranges may vary, however all are closed every Monday and Tuesday as well as the following dates: Easter, Memorial Day, July 4th, Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, and Christmas Day (also closed all of January and February).
The $24.00 annual shooting range permit allows the permit holder to access any of the five Division of Wildlife owned Class “A” ranges throughout the year. A one-day shooting range permit is $5.00 and allows permit holder to access a Class “A” range for one visit (the permit is valid only once). These permits partially offset the cost of the shooting range attendant, restroom facilities, maintenance, trash removal, and improvements.
NOTE: All ranges are subject to closing during inclement weather or flooding conditions. Range users are advised to contact the District One office at (614) 644-3925 and/or visit the public ranges page on the WildOhio.com website for general information as well as the latest range closure report.