Range Improvements Phase 1 Approved

Members of the Mill Creek Rifle Club Board of Directors voted unanimously at its October monthly meeting to forward the report of the Club's Range Development Committee to the general membership for approval at the general member meeting at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday Dec. 3. The seven-member Committee, composed of volunteer Mill Creek members, met over the course of the last six months to bring together the numerous different perspectives of club members regarding Mill Creek Rifle Club's future, including law enforcement, competition, and hobbyists. After much research and deliberation, the committee recommends the following infrastructure improvements to the membership:

Improve access to all ranges simultaneously

As access to the club is currently laid out, ranges in the southeast corner (Law Enforcement and shotgun) can't be accessed while shooters are using the High Power Range. By adding a new berm on the south side of the 500-yard range and opening a member access drive along the south side of the club, shooting activities could continue on all ranges at once.

Expand the High Power Range to 600 yards

Moving the existing berm on the south side of the 500-yard pit area back 100 yards should allow us to access a full 600-yard range to meet the demands of our long-range shooters. In addition to this improvement, the Board of Directors is also in the process of studying the feasibility of replacing the standard target pits system with an electronic scoring system. An electronic system would greatly simplify the construction demands of extending the range toward the Kansas River, as well as vastly reducing the cost of the improvement.

Add two new 100-yard ranges to the southeast.

Adding an additional two 100-yard ranges directly to the east of the current LE 2 Range would give us greater flexibility in meeting the growing needs of our law-enforcement community members and permit us to devote a second 100-yard range to full-time club use. Following extensive talks with representatives of local law enforcement who depend on Mill Creek Rifle Club to help them meet the training needs of their officers, we believe the fees these agencies pay annually can more than pay for the addition of the new ranges. By funding two additional ranges, we can help resolve the current scheduling conflicts that hinder their ability to get officers trained and qualified. The immediate benefit to the club membership is that current LE 1 Range could be reverted from reserved for law enforcement into range space that is usable during the day by club members. In addition, club members would continue to have full access to the additional two new ranges on weekends, in the evenings, and at any other times in which they are not reserved for law enforcement training. One of the new ranges could be set up with 22 long rifle plinking targets, or one could be designated a rimfire-only range.

Add bench rest capacity to the existing 500-yard range

A new canopy at the existing 500-yard firing line with two benches would add much-needed bench-rest capacity for our long-range shooters.

Relocate the shotgun range

With the addition of the two new 100-yard ranges, the current shotgun practice field could be moved to the far southeast corner of the club. A small wetland exists in the area that may have to be accounted for in the design work.

Membership vote on the next steps will be held Tuesday, Dec. 3

The next step? The Board of Directors approved a motion at its October meeting to accept the report of the Committee and to allocate up to $54,000 in order to begin the engineering study and drawings necessary to obtain the public permits we will need to begin construction. That question will be presented to the full membership for its action during new business at Monday's meeting.

Mill Creek Rifle Club President Dick Cooper will repeat his presentation from the November General Membership meeting regarding the long-range plan and will answer any questions from members before the motion comes to the floor for a vote.

Please plan to attend the general membership meeting Dec. 3 to voice your vote on these long range improvements.

Newsflash

"The strongest reason for people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government."
- Thomas Jefferson

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