On Oct. 10, 2021, at 8:32 p.m., the final Knob Creek night shoot took place. Guns.com was there to document what was arguably the greatest Second Amendment event on the planet.

Final Machine Gun Shoot

Knob Creek range machine gun shoot night shoot
A burned-out car on display at the entrance to the Knob Creek Range. (Photo: Ben Philippi/Guns.com)

The night shoot was a part of the final Knob Creek machine gun shoot that took place this past weekend, Oct. 8 - 10, 2021, at the Knob Creek Range in West Point, Kentucky.

End of an Era

hickok45 Knob Creek range machine gun shoot night shoot
Hickok45 was present for the last machine gun shoot. (Photo: Ben Philippi/Guns.com)

This event marked the end of an era. For more than 50 years, the machine gun shoot took place twice a year, in April and October, over the course of a weekend. It wasn’t uncommon for crowds of up to 20,000 people to attend. People came from all over the world to see what the Second Amendment was all about.


Too Much Work


Knob Creek range machine gun shoot night shoot
The Sumner family have been running the event for the last 50 years. (Photo: Ben Philippi/Guns.com)

According to the owners of the range, the event is simply too much work for the family to handle. Although the biannual machine gun shoots won’t be happening anymore, the gun range will remain open as usual. There are rumors, however, that the range is open for sale at the right price.

Established in 1964


Knob Creek range machine gun shoot night shoot
The entrance to the machine gun shoot in the early days. (Photo: Knob Creek Range)

Ever since the Knob Creek Range was established in 1964, then owner Biff Sumner, invited his friends over for “machine gun picnics.” These picnics grew into what was likey the biggest machine gun shoots in the world. Since 1980, Biff's son Kenny Sumner was in charge of the event and range.

Biannual Event

Knob Creek range machine gun shoot night shoot
"This range is hot!" (Photo: Ben Philippi/Guns.com)

During the machine gun shoots, the firing line was jam-packed with some of the finest machine guns and some die-hard shooters. They spent the weekends shooting at a variety of targets, including cars, boats, school buses, and appliances. There were also half sticks of dynamite that exploded when impacted with fast-flying bullets.

The waiting period to get a spot on the firing line was about 12 years. Usually, the only way to get a spot was when someone passed away. And when they did, their ashes were often fired from a cannon out onto the firing line.

Military Trade Show


Knob Creek range machine gun shoot night shoot
The pole barn and military trade show was packed this last weekend. (Photo: Ben Philippi/Guns.com)

A military trade show accompanied the shoots. An enormous pole barn and adjacent buildings were packed with vendors selling a wide variety of items. It was a shoppers paradise.

Subgun Match


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A subgun competitor at the Knob Creek Range. (Photo: Ben Philippi/Guns.com)

On a lower range there were submachine gun matches, while another lower range offered machine gun rentals. Fields located above the range were used for parking and one large field was dedicated to camping. It was often packed with large fires burning well into the night.

Night Shoots

Knob Creek range machine gun shoot night shoot
Smoke and thunder. The night shoots are out of this world. (Photo: Ben Philippi/Guns.com)

Without a doubt, the highlight of the events were the night shoots. They took place on Friday and Saturday night. The principal targets were dozens of fuel drums half full of diesel fuel with dynamite and glow sticks strapped to them.

Once darkness fell, the shooters opened up with everything they had. Many fired tracers, adding another dazzling effect to the show. The night erupted into smoke and thunder as rounds detonated the diesel drums. Fireworks were added to the mix to take it over the top. In my opinion, the night shoots were the greatest Second Amendment spectacle in the world.

They will be missed. Fortunately, there's still the Big Sandy Shoot that happens twice a year in Arizona.

Knob Creek range machine gun shoot night shoot
Thank you for 50 years. (Photo: Ben Philippi/Guns.com)


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