One of the unique aspects of SASS approved Cowboy Action Shooting™ and Wild Bunch Action Shooting™ is the requirement placed on costuming. Many event participants gain just as much enjoyment from the costuming aspect of our sport as they do the shooting competition itself.
For Cowboy Action Shooting™, minimal costuming requirements can be as simple as a basic pair of pants, a pair of cowboy boots, a basic leather belt, a button up western shirt, and a cowboy hat. Participants may choose the style of costume they wish to wear, but all clothing must be typical of the late 19th century, a B-western movie, or Western television series. For some SASS members, the costuming is can range from extremely detailed Victorian to Classic Cowboy- and everything in between.
In Wild Bunch Action Shooting™, all clothing must be typical of the late 19th century and early 20th century. Emphasis is put on period US military from 1900 to 1916 and Edwardian period fashion. Western dress such as Pike, Dutch, Lyle, or Tector in the closing scene of the Wild Bunch movie (e.g., Western style pants with or without suspenders and along sleeve western shirt) is appropriate. Vests are optional. Boots must be SASS legal and Mexican dress is also appropriate.
SASS puts a great deal of emphasis on costuming because it adds so much to the uniqueness of the game and helps create a festive, informal atmosphere that supports the friendly, fraternal feeling we encourage in our competitors.
All shooters must be in costume, and we encourage invited guests and family also to be costumed. Shooters must remain in costume at all match events; dinners, award ceremonies, dances, etc.
All clothing and equipment must be worn appropriately, how it was intended, and how it would have been worn in the Old West or as seen on B-Western movies and television.
Several costume-based shooting categories are offered in SASS Cowboy Action Shooting™; including Classic Cowboy & Classic Cowgirl, and B-Western. Please refer to the SASS Cowboy Action Shooting Shooters Handbook for the specific costuming requirements for competing in these categories.
The bottom line on costuming: You can be as simple or as extravagant with costuming as you wish- just keep the Spirit of the Game in mind, be creative, and have fun with it!