This newspaper in cooperation with the La Garita Pistol Club plans an informational meeting June 22 for English speakers who might be interested in obtaining a firearms permit.
The day is a Saturday, and the morning session will provide details on what foreigners need to do to comply with the law and legally to keep one or more weapons for sport and self protection.
One of the main speakers will be Paul Furlong, a founder of the pistol club and an expat who actually has used deadly force in the protection of a neighbor. Furlong also presents an advanced shooting course, and some of his former students will be at the session to demonstrate their techniques.
The club is seeking a donation of 3,000 colons per person or 5,000 colons per couple for the event, which will include discussions.
The location is the La Garita pistol range owned and operated by Enrique Rodriguez, a bilingual Costa Rican who is retired from a top position in the police force.
Furlong said that firearms officials regularly give the written and practical tests for a permit at La Garita. He and Rodríguez can prepare a student for the exam and offer more advanced courses that teach a student to defend him or herself in real life, he said. He will explain that arrangement as well as introduce a bilingual psychologist who can provide required mental verification in English. The costs for these services will be outlined.
The event, being called a field day, also is open to those of any age over 18 who may want to demonstrate other lethal and non-lethal methods of self protection.
A.M. Costa Rica, a sponsor of the field day, does not urge expats to own a firearm. However, in recognition that many do and many want to, the newspaper is providing a forum for correct information. Whether expats want to maintain a firearm in the home or to carry one concealed on their person, a permit is needed.
In addition to discussions and informational talks, those who wish to take a turn at firing a weapon can do so for an extra cost to cover the ammunition, weather permitting, said Furlong.
Reservations can be made by calling 8898-9398 or by writing firstname.lastname@example.org