S.D. business aims to combine bullets and beer

FBI Agent and local businessman Greg Vecchi shows where the boundaries of the gun and multi-use Deadwood Range will fall on the first floor of the Gallows building, located on Lee Street. Pioneer photo by Jaci Conrad Pearson. Jaci Conrad Pearson/Black Hills Pioneer

DEADWOOD, S.D. -- A businessman in the western South Dakota gambling town of Deadwood wants to combine an indoor shooting range with a saloon.

The Deadwood Guns complex proposed by Greg Vecchi would have several businesses, including a gun shop, a pawn shop, a shooting range and a bar called the Bullets and Beer Saloon. A ballroom would host a gun show four times a year, the Black Hills Pioneer reported.

The City Commission is developing conditions for the business, including how much of its income can be derived from alcohol.

"I mean, 'Bullets and Beer,'" Mayor Chuck Turbiville said. "The association between the two... how will you control people who may or may not be drinking?"

Vecchi said the saloon area will be locked down, and people will be tested for alcohol consumption before being allowed to shoot.

"Sequence is important," he said. "Bullets first, beer second."

Shooters also will be supervised by an employee or by Vecchi, an Army veteran who is retiring from the FBI next month and joining the Deadwood Police Department as a part-time officer, where he will earn $18.78 per hour.

The Pioneer reports that Vecchi has served as a hostage negotiator, federal agent and head of the FBI Academy’s behavioral science unit at Quantico, Va.

"I'm not going to put any of my licenses on the line," Vecchi said. "I'm not going to risk my reputation or my licenses. We have to run a tight ship here."

Vecchi hopes to have Deadwood Guns operating in June.

"I want this to be a place where mom, dad and the kids can have fun," he said. "A place where the whole family can enjoy the shooting sports."


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