An Interview with Sherry Zawistowski

So, what’s your story? How long have you been here in the Driftless, Were you born in the Driftless? What keeps you here in the Driftless?
A native Illinoisan, I have visited the Driftless area since childhood.  I’ve lived in the area since 1992 and love the beauty, nature, and all the Driftless offers our outdoor enthusiasts.

Tell us about what you do for work or your business.
I am the owner of DEZ Indoor Shooting Range since 2008. 

After graduating college in June of 2012, my son, Brian, joined, creating DEZ Tactical Arms. The retail location in Wisconsin Dells was added in 2016. In 2018, we began constructing DEZ Indoor shooting range located in Baraboo WI. In the Fall of 2019, the completed retail and range allows customers the opportunity to rent firearms before purchasing. The facility is open to the public and offers on-site gun-smithing. Safety, education, and training courses such as hunter’s safety, concealed carry, pistol and rifle classes are offered.  Leagues and memberships are available as well as hosting corporate events, bachelor parties, family fun, and team building activities can be planned.

Tell us about a project or accomplishment that you consider to be the most significant in your career with your business.
A major project significant to DEZ would be locating and procuring commercial property at 1223 South Boulevard in Baraboo – the perfect home for DEZ’s retail and indoor shooting range.  With the help of the city, financial institutions, architects, and general contractors, the indoor shooting range and training facility will fulfill an important need in Sauk County.  There is currently no place for gun enthusiasts to shoot without having to travel great distances.

Tell us about a recent project or problem that you made better, faster, smarter, more efficient, or less expensive.
Technology is a great thing! DEZ’s new shooting and training facility is instituting a POS (point of sale) system allowing barcode scanning, inventory control, and faster more efficient transaction and tracking systems.

Tell us about some of the people you’ve met, that stand apart from the rest, while here at your business or workplace.
Working with and meeting customers from all walks of life makes my job very interesting.  From surgeons, auto mechanics, law enforcement and fire department, and military — people from all walks of life are enthusiastic about firearms. The enthusiasm ranges from recreational, hunting, and self-defense. Law enforcement and security personnel require the use of weapons in their line of work. They need to continually upgrade and maintain their skills in order to be safe, accurate and proficient.  Our facility offers all of this.

Tell us about someone who has influenced your decisions for yourself or your business.
A friend and business acquaintance, Jeremy, recently opened an indoor shooting range in Ohio.  He has provided helpful advice and encouragement as well as valuable information to guide us through the building phase.

What do you think will change about your business or business process over the next five years?
Over the next five years we will see continued interest and growth in education and training. There has been a huge interest from the community to provide opportunities for members and our youth to receive shooting education in a safe environment by offering organized shooting competitions which promote good character traits such as honesty, integrity, fellowship, good sportsmanship, team play, and self-discipline, all while keeping firearms safety paramount.

What do you wish other people knew about you or your business?
DEZ is sincere about providing a valuable service that the community desires. The indoor shooting range and training center provides a place for firearms enthusiasts to become proficient in the use of firearms.

If you were to tell a friend to come and visit the Driftless Area, and they ask “Why” … what would you tell them?
The Driftless Area has an abundance of outdoor activities. There are new businesses popping up every year. Children’s Museums, craft breweries, shooting ranges, hiking trails, there is something to please everyone.  Natural beauty, lush green foliage, trees and wildlife, this area has so much to offer.
What are some of your favorite places to go and have fun here in the Driftless?
Some of my favorite places to visit are wineries and breweries.  I love things that are made locally and appreciate family businesses.  Hiking and kayaking at Devil’s lake and enjoying nature makes for a beautiful day.

What are some of your favorite places to eat here in the Driftless?
Local wineries like Baraboo Bluff and Balanced Rock. Local distilleries such as Driftless Glen. Breweries such as Tumbled Rock.

What is the most courageous thing you have done in your life?
Borrowed money to start a new business that will encourage safety and training.

If you were to tell a friend to come and visit the Driftless Area, and they ask “Why” … what would you tell them?
The Driftless is a great place to get away and enjoy nature, listen to birds chirping, and leaves rustling. Take a deep breath and feel the cool, crisp and clean air. The area is filled with natural beauty.

What do you feel most proud of?
My son who partnered with me in business after obtaining his college degree.

DEZ Tactical Arms
1223 South Blvd
Baraboo, WI 53913
(608) 448-4040