Check out this site...IDPA
....study the rules. look at the equipment requirements, learn the definitions, learn the scoring.
Most, if not all, local club matches don't mind if your not a member of the IDPA or thier local club. Most clubs charge 10 to 15 bucks to shoot. Targets, stands, and pasters all cost money. You bring the ammo...don't trust Re-loads unless they're your own and you know what your doing. Good quality factory ammo is best. Super expensive PP ammo is a waste...yes it's good to know it feeds, jacketed ball/etc. will be fine.
Remember the first and foremost rules of Firearm Safety
1. Treat every firearm as if it's loaded..regardless.
2. Never point a Firearm at anything you are not planning on shooting.
3. Never put your finger on the trigger...until your ready to fire.
IDPA is the most practical of all the action shooting sports. Firearms should be practical for concealed carry...The full size Desert Eagle will not fly. Your firearm has to fit into a "box". No lasers, No optics.
Holsters and Mag Holders need to be made for concealed carry. Double mag pouch a must. Holster should not have thumb break. Kydex or leather...belt or paddle. No shoulder rigs. No race rigs.
You need a least 3 mags to compete properly...I have at least 5 for anything I might compete with...Glock, HK or 1911's.
Hearing and eye protection is mandatory...get comfortable stuff.
Matches are usually around 100 rounds...I bring at least 150-200.
Practice...live fire and empty...know your trigger pull....know how to draw, draw from concealment...change mags from slide lock and not. These skills can be practiced in your home with an unloaded firearm...without your wife/girlfriend being home..she'll think you've lost it. Live fire..practice freestyle, strong hand and weak.
They make dummy rounds in every calliber...if your not ok with dry firing. Believe it or not, dry firing doesn't hurt most quality firearms.
Watch some videos on the tube...learn proper grip and aiming.
Find a range near you...If they have action stalls and they have SASS (Single Action Shooting Society...or Cowboy Action) They probably hold IDPA matches too.
Go slow at first...don't shoot yourself or anybody else..they really frown on that.
Help paste, everybody pastes....this will help you learn the scoring quicker and makes the match run smoother and faster.
good luck and happy shooting.