New gun club opens in Port Allen

A new gun club has opened in the location of the shuttered Hunters Run Gun Club in Port Allen, less than four months after a lease dispute with the West Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff was resolved.

Bridgeview Gun Club opened in late April at 1365 Northwest Dr., and owner Heath Morris says upgrades such as a new warehouse and renovated clubhouse are in the works. Several acres of wooded area are also being cleared for an expansion of the gun range, he says. When all the work is completed in the next two years, Morris hopes it will be among the premier gun clubs in the South.

“There’s not many shooting facilities in and around Baton Rouge,” he says. “We really went to work on this facility bringing it back to life and really doing a lot of serious upgrades to it.”

Morris and his father, Keith Morris, have spent roughly $200,000 on machines alone, mostly on electronic targeting systems. He plans to spend around $30,000 more on the clubhouse and is planning a warehouse to store equipment and inventory like clay pigeons.

The range is around 40 acres, says manager Eddie Baker, who previously worked for Hunters Run. Since Bridgeview’s soft opening two weeks ago, the club has attracted around 100 members through word of mouth, and Baker expects that number to grow. Membership rates are $25 per month or $300 per year.

Hunters Run shut its doors last year after a lease dispute between owner Ron Duplessis and West Baton Rouge Sheriff Mike Cazes. Though Duplessis maintains he had the highest bid on the land, the lease was ultimately awarded to Morris.

Nonetheless, Duplessis says he wanted to move to a larger location anyway, and has now identified 500 acres east of the Mississippi River in Ascension Parish he hopes to lease and relocate Hunters Run to. Duplessis also runs a car dealership and a firearms manufacturing business in Gonzales.

Bridgeview Gun Club is a new venture for Morris, who also operates Sugar West—which comprises farming, construction and home building services—with his father, an avid shooter.

—Sam Karlin

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