If you’re looking for something new to do, consider taking slingshot lessons.
Andrew M. Cislo, owner of Fork Plus Band Slingshot in Meriden, will give an introduction to Slingshot Target Shooting. Classes begin on Father’s Day – June 19 – and will be held at Powder Ridge Mountain Park & Resort in Middlefield. The price is $45 per person for a 90 minute lesson, equipment included. Group lessons of 10 or more people are also available. For more information, call (866) 860-0208.
Safety protocols will be in place during class.
“Only shooters will be allowed on the practice field and everyone will be wearing safety glasses,” Cislo said.
Clay practice ammunition will be used with light bands.
“They are precise but not dangerous,” he said.
Cislo also advises caution for people with latex allergies, as the bands are made of natural latex.
How the journey began
“During the pandemic, I had a lot of free time,” Cislo said. “I was recovering from a major health crisis where I almost died and wanted to do something that would help heal my mind and this is a meditation for me.”
Cislo, who has been shooting for about two and a half years, said it all started with a spike.
“I had this slingshot in my closet that I bought at the store and wanted to give to my daughter, but there was this spike that started pecking at my chimney,” Cislo said. “So I wanted to try scaring him with the slingshot, but I realized how difficult it was.”
This incident made Cislo want to improve. He started looking for material on the Internet and realized that the slingshot he was using did not have a specific purpose.
“I realized I had to customize one with precise measurements for my hand,” he said. “We all have different bodies and different draws.”
Eventually, Cislo decided it was time to open his own business. He is also a sociologist and doctor in medical sociology. He specializes in health disparities for racial and ethnic minorities, including Latinos. Cislo is of Chilean and Puerto Rican descent.
Fork Plus Band Slingshot is located in the NESIT Makerspace at 290 Pratt St. According to its website, NESIT Markerspace is a non-profit organization that provides a collaborative environment for people to build things.
“I have my workshop there because I can use the equipment provided and it helps me incubate my ideas,” Cislo said.
On Fridays from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m., the public can meet the members of the NESIT Makerspace and visit the workshops.
Cislo is creating his own slingshot line.
“I placed my order…but the materials I need will take some time to get here,” he said. “I can’t wait to have my own line, but at the moment I sometimes customize slingshots for individuals.”
Laura Parasiliti Rebeschi, one of Cislo’s clients, bought a slingshot for her husband.
“…he has a pressure job…I really wanted him to have something that could help him release the stress,” Rebeschi said.
Cislo requested measurements of her husband’s hand to customize the slingshot.
… I’m so glad my husband enjoyed it,” she said.
For more information, visit the Fork Plus Band Facebook page.