By Barbie Porter
Frazee resident Mitchell Dahlen would like to create an airsoft team for tournaments. Each team has five active players, and the events are typically held on the weekends in the Twin Cities.
“It is pretty popular,” Dahlen said. “Over my birthday there was a competition with 100 joining walk on teams and 200 people that came with teams to compete.”
The typical gear required includes full cover eye goggles, a mesh face mask, an air soft gun and ammunition.
“I wouldn’t recommend buying the most expensive until you know if you like it or not,” he said. “There are good entry level airsoft guns with M4-AR style platforms for a couple hundred bucks.
After selling weapons he made with his 3-D printer for the airsoft enthusiasts at a market this summer, Dahlen noticed there was a high level of interest.
“Anyone with a level head on their shoulders can join, we can teach the other stuff,” Dahlen said, and encouraged anyone interested in joining the fun to reach out to him on the club’s Facebook page, Frazee-Detroit Lakes-Airsoft Club.
The 29-year-old explained air soft is similar to paintball, but the guns are more realistic and the ammunition is different. Instead of being splattered with paint, biodegradable plastic BBs are fired during practice and competitions. While there may not be an obvious paint splat, there is a sting, and competitors are asked to use the honor system when hit.
Dahlen began in the world of airsoft while grade school in West Fargo, N.D. He continued into high school and hopes to get back into it as an adult.
He said the closest competition is in the Twin Cities, and he is hoping to attend with a crew. Eventually, if interest is big enough, Dahlen would like to expand the competition options to include a more regional event.
Dahlen is actively looking for land to rent for practice as well as for a potential event.
“Airsoft is good, honest fun,” Dahlen said. “Those into Call of Duty might want to consider joining in something similar but on a more physical scale. It is good to get off the couch.”