My first rifle: Ruger AR-556

Ruger AR 556

Last weekend I bought my first gun. I had been pondering purchasing a rifle for awhile, but had never come close to making the plunge. Once I decided during the holiday weekend that I was actually going to buy a rifle, the process was surprisingly easy and painless, at least here in Idaho.

We went to Impact Guns in Boise and were greeted by the friendly and attentive staff almost immediately (whereas Cabela’s has a ‘take a number’ system at their gun counter and never acknowledged me at all while I was there browsing). I was at first thinking of starting small with the Mossberg Tactical .22 rifle, but the salesman recommended checking out the ‘full blown’ AR’s first. I was shown the Ruger AR-556 rifle which I really liked, so I decided I would purchase it.

After a quick and painless background check process I was able to purchase the rifle within minutes of decided I wanted it. What really impressed me was how awesome the salespeople were. They made the process enjoyable, and everyone in the store treated each other and their customers like family. As other customers came into the store the employees greeted them by name and asked how they liked their recent purchases. I had never been to a gun store before, but the environment at Impact was much more friendly than I expected.

As I was heading to the car with my purchase the salesman chased me down because he had forgotten to give me some promotional items. He gave me a couple of Ruger hats and a license plate holder and thanked me again for my purchase. I know it’s silly, but this action made the entire process feel like more than just a sale. Heck, I’ve never gotten any sort of gift, even when buying a car. It just reminded me of all of the trucker hats my dad used to have hanging up. There were ones from buying cars, tools, washers and dryers, it’s like they used to hand out hats with everything. Now almost anything you buy is just a sale that passes in the blink of an eye, nothing else.


I don’t think I’d ever wear this outside

Shooting the rifle has been a blast. It’s crazy to me how you can just go almost anywhere and shoot in Idaho.

blm shooting

A huge area for safe shooting

Yesterday we discovered a wonderful free to use shooting range in Nampa, the George W. Nourse public shooting range. It was a bit of a drive, but was much easier to get set up and start shooting when compared to trying to scout out a safe area out in the desert. The range features several separate shooting areas, and you can just drive your car right up to one and get set up.

george w nourse shooting range

I  love the view out in the distance

Ruger AR-556

We got set up and started shooting and it was a blast!




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Idaho’s First Panera Bread (in Nampa)

chipotle chicken panini

This past week Idaho’s very first Panera Bread opened in Nampa, and I finally made it out there this evening. One of the things that saddened me when I got stationed in Idaho was that there were no Panera Bread’s in the entire state! How could that be?! Well I can finally get my Panera Bread fix twenty minutes outside of Boise. Previously I could only get my hands on the wonderful Chipotle Chicken Panini while I was on leave back in Pennsylvania or TDY to somewhere like Florida.

I’m glad Panera has finally made it to Idaho, however I do hope they open a store in Boise before too long so I don’t have to make the drive to Nampa. Something is better than nothing at least.

The experience was a little hectic, this being the location’s first Friday evening since it opened. The restaurant was packed and the line was long and slow moving. It seemed everyone had a lot of questions as they made it to the registers to order, which I can understand as many might not have ever eaten at a Panera before. There was a staff member handing out menus to those waiting in line and answering any questions they had which was nice, however I’m not sure it made things quicker. This wasn’t so much the staff’s fault, it was more slow moving customers, but again this was all to be expected.

I’m sure I’ll be making many more trips out to Nampa for Panera Bread lunches in the near future. Now if only Yuengling could make its way out here!