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A Real-life Call of Duty

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ideo gamers have long been fans of the first-person shooter games like the Call of Duty and Halo series of games. But what if you could get off the couch and take it a step further with your friends and family? At Steel City Airsoft, you can do just that and more, 7 days a week. “We have a 30,000 square-foot facility and I basically built a village inside,” said owner and airsoft enthusiast, Justin Caldwell. “If you don’t have your own airsoft weapons, we can provide them at a modest cost. After that, players can play a variety of games from capture the flag to team death matches.” For those who aren’t familiar with the sport, airsoft weapons are replicas of their real-life counterparts, which use compressed air to fire plastic bb’s at opponents. The concept is similar to paintball without the mess. The sport developed in the 1970s in Asian countries and was quickly exported and adopted worldwide. Game play is moderated by referees on the field to ensure maximum fun and safety for all players. Caldwell said he got into the sport via his son, and it has helped bring his entire family closer together through an activity they can all play and enjoy. “We played in the backyard for a while, and then I started looking around Pittsburgh for ways to expand the sport,” he said. “In Pennsylvania, it’s still pretty much a niche sport, but it’s growing. Next month, we’re off to a 500-person event that’s being held on a military base, so it’s gaining in popularity.” At Steel City Airsoft, the facility not only is open to the public, it can host private parties of 8 or more guests, open parties during regular play times, corporate team-building exercises, and law enforcement or military training exercises. “We have full rental packages available for pretty much any use of the facility,” Caldwell said. “We have certified firearms instructors on site who

emphasize safety and who can offer tips to improve your game.” Steel City Airsoft has been serving the Pittsburgh community for over three years, but recently moved its location to 100 Willow Avenue in Oakdale. It is open Friday from 5 p.m. to midnight, Saturday from noon-midnight, and Sunday from noon to 10 p.m. Membership packages are also available for those who want to challenge their friends more often, which entitles members to reduced fees on play times and rental equipment. Children under 12 are required to have a parent on site during play. Because of the modular design of the new facility, Steel City Airsoft’s courses are always changing, giving players variety and constant new challenges.

For more information about Steel City Airsoft, go to, or call 412.437.8305.

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Upper St. Clair