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Fire some off at the range


Art Director Jason Finn and Taylor Martinez shooting at the On Target indoor shooting range in Laguna Niguel.


Let’s shoot some guns. A good shot is the sign of a true patriot. Shooting can be done on the cheap. The best (cheapest) way may be to go out to the desert, but there are still options without a road trip and a personal gun. Shooting ranges offer a location, gun rentals, ammo, targets and safety equipment. The items needed: a gun, ear protection, goggles, ammo and a target. Practicing safety by watching where the hell the thing is pointed at all times is also worth mentioning.
Target shooting is a great test of nerves. Shooting a firearm can, surprisingly, be pretty difficult at first. Maybe there are such things as “naturals,” or “beginner’s luck,” but that seems very doubtful sometimes. There are few things in the world that require such a steady hand as a perfect shot. Stance, grip and trigger control are the main shortcomings of the inexperienced. On top of that, no one can push blame on the person who has a little stomach drop, twitch or even a little jump from the idea of pulling the trigger. The intermediate target shooter, whether they are aware of it or not, may often compensate for the recoil slightly before the shot. Handguns are the largest culprit of this because movement at the last second will be slightly greater than any rifle or shotgun resting on the shoulder.
With such great targets available to be shot up, there should be no wasted shots. The classic police-training kind, with the silhouette of a torso and head, are fairly cheap and effective. One of the best ones is an actual size full deck of cards spread out on a large sheet of paper. Playing five-card poker with a friend is quite the testosterone-inducing pastime. There are even zombie targets for all those damn hipsters out there.
Two little tricks to save a lot on targets are a must: first, go to a local gun show. Targets, along with ammo, will be sold at a much more reasonable price. Second is the “sharpie rule”: just circle all the new holes with a different color sharpie after every magazine emptying. Literally just mark the edges of the bullet holes and use the same target for a long time (lots of different colors).This alone could make a long session with only five or six targets being used.
First-timers will wonder what caliber they would want. A .22 caliber has easy recoil. More important than that, however, is the fact a .22 bullet is cheap at about 5 cents a round. A 9 mm is much more powerful and fun but will be more expensive. Anything more expensive than a 9 mm might really break the student budget though. Shooting like Yosemite Sam could cost a boatload of money with any size bullet, so don’t be firing without aim and calculation.
Trying very hard with every shot will not only build a better aim, but also save some money. With a steady shooting habit and a frugal caliber, a two-hour session could cost two people less than 10 bucks in ammo each. This means around 22 bucks total with the 12 dollars per person price for the range. This is part of the reason why a partner makes shooting much more enjoyable. On the one hand, a waiting period could be annoying for the impatient. On the other, a little thing called competition fuels the free market and it can also help sharpshooters save money. Many shooting ranges offer lower rates to multiple people and some of them, such as Iron Sights in Oceanside, will not allow people to even rent firearms without a partner accompanying them. Plus, a nice, sharpie-covered, and holey target has a far better story with some rivalry.
Get out there and practice the second by target shooting with some arms. Just don’t accidentally point them at anybody. They can have quite a bite.

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My 9-iron is bigger than yours

Let’s golf. Not for real. Just practice.Located three miles from the Oceanside campus, the Carlsbad Golf Center offers a place to smack some golf balls for relatively cheap. Ten bucks gets more than 100 balls, which will probably last someone for well over an hour. The cost of renting clubs isn’t an issue for those without a set. Carlsbad Golf Center starts as cheap as a dollar per club, and kids are free. No memberships are required and two putting greens and a sand trap are free to practice.

Layout Editor Jason Finn, left, and Staff Writer Eric Nans, right, sending golf balls to heaven. Photo by Avery Sanders.

The target range is over 100 yards wide and 300 yards in distance. To go that distance requires experience. There are loads of targets, ranging from as close to 25 yards and, whether intended or not, it feels great to actually hit one. The closest targets are small metal barrels with the lids off and tilted at a 45-degree angle. This creates a tantalizing target and is deceptively difficult to hit. Many balls will be wasted on the attempts. The Chariot’s Avery Sanders was fortunate to make one in on pure luck.
If you are good enough at golf then the practice will obviously help your game but it’s worth the experience for the rookies too. The first lesson I learned was that realizing form is more important than aggression for finally achieving some distance. Then how seemingly impossible it is to hit a target until I started following through a lot more with my swings. It’s like billiards except you have to shoot with the whole body instead of a steady arm. Wildly swinging the club could accidentally lead to a broken stick by hitting the ground too hard. That’s why a steady and relaxed approach is needed. Once a little control is practiced, the possibility of hitting a target (on purpose) becomes a possibility.
At the very least, the experience was a good way to unload some built-up aggression by providing a channel in the form of smacking the hell out of a little ball to see how far I could possibly reach. Even though driving balls off a rooftop sounds a lot more interesting, responsible people will stay away from such activities. Go to the Carlsbad Golf Center instead.

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Island“Once upon this Island,” a musical, ends Sunday March 9.

A jubilant adventure of song and dance brought to the stage with whimsical props and heartfelt movement. This production stands firmly on its feet and sails on the winds of each of the individual players.

Entering the MiraCosta College Theatre the sounds of a tropical rainfall set the stage for the story to come. Set in the Caribbean the feel of the islands come clearly to life in the dance and the song delivered by this exceptional cast. A new experience for the MCC theatre department, they’ve taken in new players from the community ages 8 to 12. This addition to the student cast brought cohesion to the performance.

This love story is full of twists and turns right from the car propelled with umbrella wheels and flashlight headlights to the dancer’s moves compel you into the scene.

Audrey Fortuin’s voice radiates throughout the performance bringing life and depth to the piece. She is supported by the ensemble cast in making the presentation flow.

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To celebrate the 110th anniversary of Czech romantic composer Antonin Dvorak’s death, the MiraCosta College Symphony Orchestra will be performing this Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 3 p.m. in the Concert Hall, building 2406.

General admission is $10, and $8 for students, staff and seniors. The Orchestra will perform three of Dvorak’s well-known works, “Symphony No. 8 Op. 88 in G major,” “Overture to In Natures Realm OP 91″ and “Slavonic Dances Op. 46 No. 1-4.” His works and compositions were inspired by and reflect his homeland, the Czech Republic, as well as Moravian and other Slavic music.

The MiraCosta College Symphony Orchestra is a 70-member orchestra made up of professional musicians and community members, as well as MCC students and faculty. They are led by music director and conductor Branden Muresan. The Orchestra began in 2010, making 2014 their fourth season.

Tickets are available through the MCC Box Office website, and the door or by calling 760-795-6815.

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Scholarship deadlines approaching

By Bethany Blakeney, Editor in Chief

Sunday, March 16 is the last day to apply for the MCCF 2014-2015 Annual Scholarships, which awards more than 185 scholarships for $500 and higher.

Students may apply who have completed a minimum of six units and have a 2.0 or higher GPA and are either transferring to a four-year school or returning to MiraCosta College.

Students need to complete a personal statement essay and have their unofficial transcript ready. The Financial Aid office offers online guides to help students write their personal statements.

The Spring 2014 Genentech Biotechnology Scholarship will be awarding five $1000 scholarships to students either enrolled in a Biotechnology course or to those who have completed one or more at MCC. A personal statement is required, due March 16.

The 2014-2015 Harry Phillips Social Science Transfer Scholarship deadline is March 16. Students must be an anthropology, economics, geography, history or political science major transferring this fall to a four-year.  The scholarship requires an unofficial transcript and personal statement to be submitted.

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National certification for the National Alliance on Mental Illness

By Jason Finn, Layout Editor

On March 5 the NAMI On Campus club became certified as a national chapter of NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental Illness. The club became official at MiraCosta College on Dec 6, 2013 when the Student Senate approved the club. The club helps raise awareness of mental health issues and promotes resources available on campus to help fellow students. NAMI On Campus meets from 12:15 to 1:15 p.m. every other Friday in the Horticulture Conference room.

The Health Services office is also promoting campus awareness of mental health through a reward of a $5 gift card to Starbucks. Gift cards for each training exercise completed by students and staff members. The goals of these exercises are to measure the awareness of mental stress and the available treatment and resources for students. Inquiries are completely anonymous, impersonal and should not take more than a half-hour to complete. There will be a gift card awarded for each survey, so students and staff members are not limited to only one. Visit http://ccc.kognito.com/ to participate.

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Men’s Spartans deflated in final home game

By Bethany Blakeney, Editor in Chief

10 Jukes

Chuck Smith dribbles the ball through the court. Photo courtesy of Pat Cubel.

Last Wednesday, MiraCosta College Men’s basketball team played their last home game of the season against the Cuyamaca College Coyotes.

The Coyotes scored the first point. From there on, Cuyamaca kept ahead of MCC throughout the first period. At intermission, the Coyotes were in the lead with 39-17. It was during the second half that the Spartans began catching up to the Coyotes.

“The first half was weak,” said #2 Juwan Richardson. “But in the second half, we made a comeback.” Continue Reading »

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Women’s Spartans deflated in final home game

By Debbie White, Art Director

13 Dribble

Brogan Griffin dribbles past with the ball. Photo courtesy of Pat Cubel.

MiraCosta College’s Women’s basketball team continued on their losing streak last Wednesday with a 94-62 loss to the Palomar College Comets.  The final home game of the season began on a high note when the Lady Spartans scored the first 2-point shot. The Spartans and Comets kept competition close for the game’s first 12 minutes, but due to a short bench, by halftime the Spartans fell behind, 46-34. Continue Reading »

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Priority registration requirements changed

Priority Registration at MCC will be changed for the fall of 2014. The California Community Colleges Board of Governors changed the way students are able to enroll in classes. The Board of Governors decides policy and gives guidance for all California community colleges. Continue Reading »

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Police officer sues MCC

By Aaron Finn, Assignment Editor

rebecca arnoldUSEMiraCosta College Police officer Rebecca Mahan has filed a lawsuit against the college, alleging that she was live-streamed for three years by a surveillance camera installed in the police locker room. According to Dr. Dick Robertson, Vice President of Student Services, the locker room doubles as an evidence room housing dispatching equipment. Officer Mahan dressed and undressed in the room that contains her locker and the surveillance equipment. Mahan alleges the camera was running while she was changing her clothes from street attire to her uniform. Continue Reading »


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