ST. PAUL, Minn., Feb. 4, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Gander Mountain announced a pioneering development in the firearms industry with this week's opening of the first Gander Mtn. Academy™ in Lake Mary, FL. Gander Mtn. Academy is the first civilian training facility to offer highly skilled instructors, a variety of comprehensive courses, modern multi-media classrooms, a live-fire range, and exclusive virtual simulation technology previously available only to military and law enforcement agencies, including the amazing V-Range™ - the world's most accurate simulated firing range, and high-definition, multi-screen, virtual simulators that put students to the test in real-world self-defense and recreational scenarios.
"As the major retailer of firearms in the country, this is a natural step forward for us to bring the most advanced technology and know-how in firearms training directly to the public," said David Pratt, CEO of Gander Mountain, "Our mission is to offer the highest level of firearms training ever made available to the public on a wide-spread and convenient basis. With unparalleled safety, enjoyment and exclusive technology, there's never been anything offered to the public like Gander Mtn. Academy."
Each Gander Mtn. Academy is a unique destination experience designed to set new standards for those looking to develop and improve their firearms safety and proficiency – from the novice to the advanced enthusiast, and all in a safety-first, family friendly environment.
Among the highlights of the Gander Mtn. Academy are:
- Best-in-class professional instruction for every skill level and interest utilizing Gander Mountain's proven FRS Learning System™ focusing on Fundamentals, Repetition and Simulation
- The V-Range™ – the world's most accurate simulated firing range, where students experience the stunning clarity of over 2 million pixels per lane, and wear eye and hearing protection as they fire actual firearms modified for laser technology and realistic recoil on a wide variety of targets, qualifications and marksmanship drills. Students can "ZOOM" in to examine their results and send .jpeg pictures of their targets to their email.
- The live-fire L-Range™ – staffed by trained Range Masters focusing on safety-first, and utilizing state-of-the-art target systems with easy-to-use touch screens offering manual practice and pre-programmed courses of fire, custom wide range stalls to accommodate instructor assisted training, and air filtration and cooling systems that offer a clean and comfortable shooting environment year-round
- The Pro V SIM 180™ and Pro V SIM 300™ Virtual Simulators – Utilizing technology previously unavailable to civilians, these multi-screen, interactive, high-definition video simulators surround the student with real-world action scenarios designed to train quick thinking, good judgment and accurate decision making under stress using the same actual firearms modified for laser technology and realistic recoil used in the V-Range™. After the simulator session, instructors replay and critique the student's actions and decisions in video debriefing rooms using sophisticated Trainee Monitoring and Recording (TMaR™) performance auditing software. Students can upload video segments of their simulator session to YouTube® to share.
- FREE Family Safety Course - offered to everyone purchasing a new firearm from Gander Mountain, covering universal firearm safety rules, essential firearm handling, and safe storage of firearms and ammunition.
The 20,000 square-foot Florida facility is the first of several Gander Mtn. Academy locations set to open within the coming year. Future locations are currently in development in La Crosse, WI, Greensboro, NC, and Roanoke, VA, with additional locations to be announced later in the year. Customers may register for classes or schedule time for Gander Mtn. Academy activities in person, by phone or on the web at https://www.gandermountain.com and clicking on "Gander Mtn. Academy."
About Gander Mountain Company
Gander Mountain Company headquartered in Saint Paul, MN, is the nation's largest retail network of outdoor specialty stores for hunting, fishing, camping, marine and outdoor lifestyle products and services. Since 1960, the Gander Mountain brand has offered an expanding assortment of competitively priced outdoor equipment, technical apparel, rugged casual wear and footwear featuring national, regional and specialty brands as well as the company's owned brands. Focused on a "We Live Outdoors®" culture, Gander Mountain dedicates itself to creating outdoor memories. There are currently 116 conveniently located Gander Mountain outdoor lifestyle stores in 23 states. For the nearest store location call 800-282-5993 or visit www.GanderMountain.com Gander Mountain is also the parent company of Overton's (www.overtons.com) a leading catalog and Internet based retailer of products for boating and other water sports enthusiasts.
SOURCE Gander Mountain Company