Downtown war zone

On Jan. 2, the Big Rapids community welcomed a new business to town, one the area has never seen before.

Detroit native Carey Jackson brought Big Rapids its first indoor paintball complex, a plan he had been working on for a while. Located next to Star Shooters on Michigan Ave., Precision Combat Arena (PCA) offers a sports experience that is safe, fun and a good way to get some exercise.

“It’s something that I’ve always wanted to do,” Jackson said. “As far as recreation here in Big Rapids, there’s not a whole lot. Paintball adds another element to the recreation. I mean, you have the bowling alley here and that’s fine and all, but after a while, you want to do something different. Especially if you want to do something more tactical, almost Call of Duty-like.”

Jackson wanted to offer something fun, different and affordable to college students, as well as sparking in students an interest in paintball. Jackson said traditional paintball is normally played in open fields with inflatables, and often times you spend a lot of money playing.

“I really want to renew the passion for paintball that you kind of lose when you get older. Paintball is expensive. Between the paint, the markers, all the equipment,” Jackson said. “I wanted to provide a facility where prices are cheap. I’m open late, I’m open on weekends and you can come in and play and have a good time.”

So far, Jackson is happy with how business has been and is working hard to keep returning customers pleased with the environment. Jackson also stated this experience has been very rewarding.

“My commitment to the facility is to always modify the course and make improvements. Just to always give it that shock value and to make it interesting,” Jackson said. “You aren’t going to see the same thing every time when you come in here. For me, what I really enjoy is when I’m out here and I hear that first shot go off. As soon as the first shot goes off, everyone goes wild. That’s the most rewarding thing.”

Jackson and PCA are currently working on organizing charity tournaments and five-on-five leagues. All information about upcoming events can be found at their website,, or on Facebook by searching Precision Combat Arena.