I had the pleasure of meeting Kenn Blanchard at the BLACKHAWK! Bloggers Summit and I thoroughly enjoyed being able to talk with Kenn about his blog and his plans for the future. We had planned on getting Kenn out hunting with us in Virginia but now we are a bit farther away in Nebraska so we are working on some plans for 2011. Kenn’s Podcast is one of those that I listen to on a regular basis while dropping up stories on the site and we hope you will enjoy this quick interview the Kenn Blanchard of the Urban Shooter Podcast.
Kenn, Where did you grow up?
I grew up right outside NE Washington, DC in Hyattsville Maryland and spent the summers and every school break from 2-17 with my maternal grandmother in rural southeastern Virginia.
How did you get into shooting?
I got into shooting because it was the one sport I could do solo. I wasn’t as athletic as the other members of my family and felt kinda inferior as a result. Even my mother was a star basketball player. When I didn’t make any of the teams I tried out for, marksmanship appealed to me as something I could do that they couldn’t. It started with the Daisy Red Rider BB Gun. I didn’t get my own pistol until after enlisting in the US Marine Corps. I found out I was better with a handgun. Training was crucial. I didn’t get it till I changed jobs within the Marines Corps to a specialized field working with the US State Department. Then my inert talent emerged.
What led you to start a blog and podcast about tactical shooting?
I started my blog and podcast after failing for many years to really help the urban community with just a website and the occasional appearance or lecture. I started out wanting to be the neighborhood firearms instructor and resource to stop accidents in the city with firearms and to be the trust resource for houses of worship, boys clubs, and teen centers regarding guns in the city. I had hoped with my background, some big organization would scoop me up and fund me. I had hoped they would help me spread the message of responsible gun ownership from city to city as the ambassador of gun rights for minorities in the city. It didn’t happen. I spent a lot of money, actually started a national gun club that I couldn’t maintain and gave up. Podcasting gave me the opportunity to try again. I could reach the kids. I could get a message out. Then I found out I was competing with well funded, better connected trainers. I changed my show to be more entertainment and more me. It still covered gun rights, and introduced all shooting activities to my audience but I would do it like a variety show. I started having so much fun I didn’t want to stop. I relived a dream to broadcast on traditional radio I had as a kid. I use elements of Old Time Radio, and a “Tonight Show” format on mine.
Tell me about the celebration for your 200th Live Podcast?
On October 30, 2010, I am having a celebration of my 200th episode of the often silly, sometimes inspirational, and fun Urban Shooter Podcast. I am inviting the first 200 people I can get into the Forum of the Northern Virginia Community College Annandale, VA, Cultural Center Forum, 8333 Little River Turnpike, Annandale, VA 22003-3796 from 11am – 1 PM on Saturday.
It’s a patriotic theme, so wear your red, white and blue. It will be emceed by Douglas Million a professional comedian, actor and early contributor to the shows’ comedic elements. I actually won’t get to my 200th episode until around January 2011 but hopefully recording it now for then. It’s a listener appreciation party and a chance to meet some of the people that have enriched my life over the past three years.
I had to charge to get the place and hope the access will help fund the show into 2011. I might actually use it as a pilot for a cable based television show. It’s $30 in advance and more at the door. http://tinyurl.com/USParty
What does Urban Shooter offer up to its listeners?-
This is a listener supported variety show for all law abiding gun owners, air-soft, air-gun, and paintball enthusiasts and hunters of the city hosted by author, instructor and activist, Rev. Kenn Blanchard. The weekly show is produced by the pastor of a Christian church in Washington, DC, who is also a former US Marine, federal police officer and firearms trainer. Every now and then I give the benefits of my other life as a career CIA officer that has traveled in some of the most hostile times and places in the past twenty years and survived. I share life lessons, grassroots information with humor, guest interviews, commentary, and gun reviews.
It’s called the urban shooter because it is focused on people that shoot and live in or near a city or town, but all are welcomed. I believe it is a little tougher to enjoy your freedom and belief in the second amendment in a city. You might need a laugh to keep from crying or sing a little song to keep your spirits up. So I give it all liberally on the Urban Shooter Podcast.
We are the only pro gun podcast with storytelling. I narrate a unique story Old Radio style story every week collaborated with a listener and friend named Derek Ward called Zombie Strike. Her writes a new chapter every week and I read it. It is a soap opera with heros, zombies, and guns that gives a cliffhanger every week. It’s really fun to do and glad so many enjoy it. I sell Zombie Targets to support the site and even have the ebook available on Amazon.com of the first twenty chapters of the story. It’s all about the zombies.
How can people download and listen to your podcast?
People can listen to my show online by going to www.urbanshooter.us, downloading or subscribing through iTunes and I have an iPhone APP. They can hear it on Windows to Liberty.com and follow the links under the episodes on www.urbanshooterpodcast.com for each show.
What do you want people to take away from listening to Urban Shooter?
I give away a lot of myself. I try to make you laugh, think, inspire and help you survive another week. It’s the most fun I have with my clothes on next to shooting.
Links to Kenn Blanchard
www.urbanshooter.libsyn.com/rss (show feed)
Zombie Strike Book/ PDF
Zombie Strike Amazon / Kindle
The Urban Shooter iPhone App
Join and support USA (one time shot $48)
Black Man With A Gun book (autographed $10)