Creedmoor Sports’ opening was a grand success that brought noted actor R. Lee Ermy to town. Guns n ammo fans mixed with autograph hounds were able to take pictures with the “Gunny” while perusing all that Creedmoor has to offer. The mixed-use facility was a quick hit and was instant proof that their exit from California was the right move for their company.
Operations Manager Dennis DeMille explained why the move made sense for Creedmoor Sports. “We came from California because they weren’t gun friendly. We are primarily a competition rifle company, but that wasn’t really taken into consideration. Another deciding factor is that we just weren’t doing a lot of business in California. After taking a look at our books, we concluded that the bulk of our catalog and Internet sales were on the East coast, primarily in the South. In fact, 73.8% of our sales were made to the other side of the country”.
Demille continued with the decision to come to Anniston. “After a phone call from the Civilian Marksman Program in Anniston, we came down to take a look. Being that close to a range of that size made good business sense. Once we decided on this piece of property, we decided to open a retail space at the front entrance. This wasn’t planned, as it was just one more thing that happened when we made the move. We’ve made our money as a competition rifle outfit, not handguns. But it seemed a shame to let a space that great go unused”.
The City of Anniston was easy to work with and offered financial incentives to bring the company to McClellan. While that has made doing business easier, DeMille said the most attractive part of moving was the characteristic attitude of most Southerners. “Everyone here is just so nice. When we have people come to town to tour the building or buy product, they are so impressed by the pleasant nature of everyone here”, he said.
Sales have been brisk at Creedmoor Sports. That has reinforced the company’s wishes to expand. Demille laid out plans to open a possible second location in Oxford and to further bolster their bottom line with a new endeavor. “We are opening a new ammunition manufacturing business. The Center for Domestic Preparedness has given us an order for three million rounds. That is huge for us. We also have just bought 33 acres not far from here. The site was an Army Ammunition Supply Point. It is ideal for us because the land is so big. It has so many ammo bunkers that we can reuse. We will utilize a 33,000 square foot structure that we will use to package ammunition”.
Creedmoor Sports has found a new home and a genuine sense of community in Anniston and especially with McClellan. Plans to expand are in motion and McClellan reinforces its reputation as a community with a lot to offer and more to come.