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Buffalo Range in Ottawa was shut down today


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#1 bsachnoff

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Posted 16 March 2012 - 05:16 PM

Range shut down by IDNR Hopefully this is the correct place to post.

#2 willxjcherokee

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Posted 16 March 2012 - 05:26 PM

Wow illinois sure poops all over legal shooters...

#3 Bud

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Posted 16 March 2012 - 06:10 PM

Wow illinois sure poops all over legal shooters...


IDNR is having incredibly heavy pressure on them to re-open the I&M canal towpath which was shut down after one of their wannabe cop thugs claimed he heard bullets passing over head.

The Canal towpath was actually shut down (along with portions of 46 other State parks) because the IDNR has no money dues to severe budget cutbacks. The IDNR backed up their cop's imagination and then used it to put Buffalo Range out of business. I doubt seriously if the range will ever re-open because the woman that owns it has been faced with tremendous legal bills because of all this pressure from IDNR.

It just goes to show you how bad government in Illinois has become and the arrogance of any appointed manager of anything being adminstered on behalf of the public.

This is a travesty both of legitimate government and the laws under which all of us live under.

My hatred for this State continues to seeth and grow. We are done a disservice hourly and daily.

I would not blame this on either the Democrats or Republicans because both are equally at fault. What's happening in LaSalle County at the Buffalo Range is being repeated every day by all State Departments and Agencies by the political appointees of our corrupt and power drunk elected officials.

At some point, every Illinois citizen needs to suddenly scream out in rage and take a stand to get this stopped.
Bud



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#4 moparcardave

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Posted 16 March 2012 - 08:09 PM

So glad to have left that state and suggest any of you younger guys to think about packing up. I spend 57 years in that mess and there was a time as a 14 year old I could buy ammo, 1/2 a box if that's all I could afford. I could walk down the railroad tracks with that H&R Sportsman tucked in my belt and go back to the farm and plink. I'd ride my mini bike down the road with a No. 5 Jungle Carbine over my shoulder to shoot at the pit. That was Illinois in the 60's, well it's over.



I enjoyed Buffalo, but at 82 miles one way to have a place to shoot in the pit, well it was a drive but yep if you love gun, and being a former ffl that was part of who I am. To hear bullets wizzing over their head they'd have to have super hearing at the angle that it would take to clear the berms...



Write and let them know however if you are younger just pack up and head out of state. You can't believe the stress that goes away in a state where you are allowed to carry, you are allowed to have a loaded concealed handgun in your car without a license, where most guys were I live have their truck gun in the back, loaded and ready to go and not a word said. Illinois is stuck in the Chicago mode and will be for a number of more years, sadly the holdout and the laughing stock of the nation, sorry it's the truth. I did get ribbing when I moved and told them where I was from. Glad to say it's no longer where I am from. I just can't see Illinois gettting much better soon. I hope you do get your ccw rights, but then again it's hard to find a place to shoot outside without high fees, memberships etc. Only have one of my three kids still living there and soon I think he will be gone too, it's not worth it... politics, gun laws, taxes, state taxes, property value plummeted...
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#5 Xwing

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Posted 16 March 2012 - 09:04 PM

:rolleyes: I'm informing everyone I know about this. It's a travesty. The only public range in the state where we can shoot some firearms. It's a left-wing witch hunt. I really may have to make good on my promise to leave the state, despite the fact I've lived here my whole life.
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#6 spec4

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 10:30 AM

This is a travesty that if allowed to continue, will result in zero places for Illinois residents to shoot. IMO, that is the clear goal of the socialists. Like others above, I left Illinois to live in a free state, and it has been exhilarating. Got my lifetime carry permit within three weeks of being here. I'm trying to gently nudge my daughter to bust out. He husband is ready but she likes where she is.

Being born in Illinois and having lived most of my life there I was glad to finally leave. You can't believe the difference. And what I save in taxes, well, you don't want to know. When I visit my in-laws out west (MT, ND, SD) they give me a blank look when I explain what goes on in Illinois.

Some may say I'm a turkey for not staying and fighting, but I came to the conclusion that Illinois, in my lifetime, will never change.

#7 bob

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 11:06 AM

This is mostly about the pressure IDNR has been getting from bicycle groups because the DNR closed a bicycle path due to concern about the potential for bullets making it to the path and striking someone.

There has been a lot of misinformation put out by both sides on this one. I for one am having a hard time sorting out what is real and what is not. If there are bullets escaping from the range somehow and getting to the area of the bike path then something needs to be done about that. Based on the geography of the places involved it seems unlikely but possible.
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The opinions expressed by this poster do not reflect the official stance of Illinois Carry. Apparently there was some confusion on the part of at least one person that it does, and I want to make things clear that my opinion is my own and that whatever the official stance of IC is or is not at present, it may or may not reflect my own opinion.

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#8 Xwing

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 02:53 PM

We need to flood email inboxes and burn up phone lines for this terrible action by Illinois DNR. But the main question in my mind is: who can fix it (and has any willingness to do so)? Since this is a specific government agency, it seems like the person we most need to contact is the head of the Illinois DNR.


Looks like it is

Director: Marc Miller
http://dnr.state.il.us/Director/
217-785-0075


Assistant Director: John Rogner
217-785-0075

Email List: http://www.dnr.illin...es/contact.aspx

Trails program email: dnr.greenway@illinois.gov (since they're the one causing this shutdown)
Hunting /Fishing: dnr.license@illinois.gov



Any better suggestions on the best way to proceed? We need to hit, and to hit hard. But where is the best place?!!!!!
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#9 kurt555gs

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 08:13 PM

Is that Mautino's area? He is a good guy.

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#10 vezpa

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Posted 17 March 2012 - 11:36 PM

Sounds like the owner is probably ready to throw in the towel from what I've read. They don't want gun ranges in Illinois. Sadly its time to leave Illinois, even Blago knew that lol
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#11 ops144

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Posted 18 March 2012 - 01:53 PM

Sounds like the owner is probably ready to throw in the towel from what I've read. They don't want gun ranges in Illinois. Sadly its time to leave Illinois, even Blago knew that lol

where did you read that?

#12 vezpa

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Posted 18 March 2012 - 04:07 PM


Sounds like the owner is probably ready to throw in the towel from what I've read. They don't want gun ranges in Illinois. Sadly its time to leave Illinois, even Blago knew that lol

where did you read that?



Looking at what Budman wrote about her legal pressures.

Edited by vezpa, 18 March 2012 - 04:16 PM.

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#13 vezpa

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Posted 18 March 2012 - 04:23 PM

I was looking for a story online and found they closed the Ottawa range in Michigan last fall due to stray bullets. Weird

Maybe there is something to do with the word "Ottawa"?

Read their story. range
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#14 Bud

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Posted 18 March 2012 - 06:38 PM

Ottawa (Illinois) Times on Saturday March 17:



Range attorney says shooting park is being unfairly targeted: 'My client and I are outraged by the state's course of action'
03/16/2012, 7:32 pm Steve Stout, steves@mywebtimes.com, 815-431-4082 The attorney for a local gun range that was prevented from opening Friday after the Illinois Attorney General's office obtained a temporary restraining order from a La Salle County judge has expressed outrage at the state's actions.

"My client and I received notice of the 2 p.m. Thursday motion hearing (in Ottawa) at 12:15," said Steven Pontikes of Chicago who represents the Buffalo Range Shooting Park outside Naplate. "I thought the Attorney General was way above this kind of action. I wasn't even in my office (at the time of the notification) and there was no way I could have made it to that hearing. My client and I are outraged by the state's course of action."

Nearly two years ago, the Illinois Department of Natural Resources closed a portion of the Illinois & Michigan Canal towpath and a section of Buffalo Rock State Park west of Ottawa for safety concerns following reports of near misses by stray bullets believed by state officials to have originated from the nearby shooting range.

During that time, the IDNR have demanded further physical improvements to the shooting park while range management has claimed their operation was safe and in complete compliance with past court orders.

Pontikes told The Times, "The Attorney General office has previously said that they did not want to close the range and now, that's exactly what they have done. The range has been closed (for the season) for months and still the public sections closed years ago have not been reopened even if there was no chance of any danger which we have always maintained there is not (from us)."

Pontikes said, "We have an expert (ballistic) witness who will testify to the court that the range is 100 percent safe. I have no idea why the judge would have allowed this motion to go forward. Unless the state's experts are practicing voodoo or using arguments that defies all reason and logic, this range is not responsible (for stray bullets falling on Buffalo Rock or the towpath)."

Pontikes said he and his client, range owner Evelyn Muffler of Ottawa, are considering filing motions asking for sanctions against the Attorney General's office and the IDNR for the way they handled the situation.

"It was certainly an unfair backdoor verdict," concluded Pontikes.

Phone calls to IDNR Director Marc Miller and communications spokesman Chris McCloud were not returned.
Bud



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#15 05FLHT

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Posted 18 March 2012 - 06:44 PM

I love 'the rock,' after Pepper's (now closed) it was the second place I ever shot. Using this logic, half of Chicago should be shut down...
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#16 Joeyl

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Posted 18 March 2012 - 08:11 PM

Ottawa (Illinois) Times on Saturday March 17:

..."My client and I received notice of the 2 p.m. Thursday motion hearing (in Ottawa) at 12:15," said Steven Pontikes of Chicago who represents the Buffalo Range Shooting Park outside Naplate. "I thought the Attorney General was way above this kind of action. I wasn't even in my office (at the time of the notification) and there was no way I could have made it to that hearing. My client and I are outraged by the state's course of action."...

I'm trying to word this to avoid being moderated, but if the madigan clan were to land in a federal prison somewhere with "dubious characters" as bunkmates I would celebrate.

#17 Bud

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Posted 18 March 2012 - 08:48 PM

I'm trying to word this to avoid being moderated, but if the madigan clan were to land in a federal prison somewhere with "dubious characters" as bunkmates I would celebrate.

They would be following a long standing Illinois political tradition.
Bud



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#18 Mr. Fife

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Posted 18 March 2012 - 09:46 PM

Buffalo was on my list of ranges to visit. If it ever opens again I will visit ASAP.

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#19 ming

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Posted 19 March 2012 - 06:51 AM

Buffalo was on my list of ranges to visit. If it ever opens again I will visit ASAP.

Same here. I was planning on going this spring. :whistle:
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#20 willxjcherokee

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Posted 19 March 2012 - 11:12 AM


Buffalo was on my list of ranges to visit. If it ever opens again I will visit ASAP.

Same here. I was planning on going this spring. :whistle:

I've never been :( , I've also NEVER plinked before :(

#21 Druid

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Posted 19 March 2012 - 12:46 PM

This place is my favorite Range. I can't believe this...

#22 ops144

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Posted 19 March 2012 - 02:49 PM

it a great and safe place to shoot.

one of if not the most safe places i have shot at.

i wont take my kids to shoot some where unsafe ..

Buffalo is the one of the few places that i feel fine with them shooting there.

they run a great place...

#23 JR1987

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Posted 19 March 2012 - 02:55 PM

Only went once, was indifferent about it. I don't like that I can't stand and shoot. IL ranges seem to be insanely strict. I am sad to see it close; however seeing as the Indiana DNR range at Kingsbury is the same distance and 4 bucks all day; I can't say I am heart broken. I am certainly angry that it was shut down for no good reason.

Edited by JR1987, 19 March 2012 - 02:56 PM.


#24 jim123

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Posted 20 March 2012 - 08:24 AM

I'm not too sure but do you need a carry permit to go to the range in Indiana?

#25 JR1987

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Posted 20 March 2012 - 08:35 AM

I'm not too sure but do you need a carry permit to go to the range in Indiana?


Nope, I've never heard that. Carry permit is only in regards to carrying. You don't need one to shoot or own in Indiana.

Go there, pay the man in the booth 4 bucks and shoot all day.

#26 pyre400

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Posted 20 March 2012 - 08:37 AM

Only went once, was indifferent about it. I don't like that I can't stand and shoot. IL ranges seem to be insanely strict. I am sad to see it close; however seeing as the Indiana DNR range at Kingsbury is the same distance and 4 bucks all day; I can't say I am heart broken. I am certainly angry that it was shut down for no good reason.


Oh you missed out. There's a plinking pit - its their claim to fame... The rifle ranges are bench, but they have another auxiliary range ( think it may only be used for events).

I like Buffalo because it is such a safe place to shoot. Next time you're at a range, count how many armed safety officers there are, observing the range.
I also love the pit.

They'd better open back up soon - I'm sitting on a bunch of laundry detergent bottles that are upsetting the social equilibrium in my household. :(

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#27 kurt555gs

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Posted 20 March 2012 - 08:38 AM


I'm not too sure but do you need a carry permit to go to the range in Indiana?


Nope, I've never heard that. Carry permit is only in regards to carrying. You don't need one to shoot or own in Indiana.

Go there, pay the man in the booth 4 bucks and shoot all day.


Indiana just changed that law this year. A FOID card is now good to transport an unloaded, encased handgun in Indiana.

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#28 JR1987

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Posted 20 March 2012 - 02:46 PM


Only went once, was indifferent about it. I don't like that I can't stand and shoot. IL ranges seem to be insanely strict. I am sad to see it close; however seeing as the Indiana DNR range at Kingsbury is the same distance and 4 bucks all day; I can't say I am heart broken. I am certainly angry that it was shut down for no good reason.


Oh you missed out. There's a plinking pit - its their claim to fame... The rifle ranges are bench, but they have another auxiliary range ( think it may only be used for events).

I like Buffalo because it is such a safe place to shoot. Next time you're at a range, count how many armed safety officers there are, observing the range.
I also love the pit.

They'd better open back up soon - I'm sitting on a bunch of laundry detergent bottles that are upsetting the social equilibrium in my household. :thinking:


Two posts to respond to.

Yeah I went about 1 year ago to try out my M1 at 100 yards. It was a nice place, but it just felt... overly protective. Basically because I couldn't stand. I like challenging myself like that.

I've never been to the pit, only the 100 yard range. Like I said, I didn't hate it; but for the price and the distance, the range at Kingsbury is my place of choice. Though like I said, for it to be shut down only makes me hate this state even more.

The staff was friendly, I'm just used to shooting in other states where I can shoot in my own backyard.

Kurt: I did not now that. But I transport rifles, no handguns.

I am glad they did change that.

It's a shame to see the range close down, it was a nice place.

Edited by JR1987, 20 March 2012 - 02:47 PM.


#29 ming

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Posted 20 March 2012 - 03:13 PM

Can someone provide some info on the Kingsbury range in Indiana that has been mentioned? I never heard of it.
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#30 rebel49

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Posted 20 March 2012 - 03:18 PM

Hello to all
I'm a new guy here and have been waiting until I was approved to reply to this post.
I am the Manager at Buffalo Range and this whole senario stinks to the high heavens.
First is the matter of projectiles leaving the range and impacting the Park and trail.
1. It doesn't happen, and because of physics and terrain and ballistics it can't happen.
2. We have recorded in log books and calls to the Lasalle Co. Sheriff's office THOUSANDS of shots fired off our site and on days we are closed or after our hours of operation, plus during our hours of operation.
3. We have found several locations that actively shoot and hunt around the park and trail. Some of these are ranges and clubs that are unsupervised ( no RSO on duty)and practice the unsafe sport of drinking and shooting. The hunting around the park and trail is done by trespassing on private property and erecting tree stands and ground blinds the fire directly toward the park and trail, pretty unsafe Huh?
4. We have tried to present this to the IDNR and have given several tours of the site to IDNR officals, and State Senators and even the Senators agree the range is safe. The IDNR has turned a blind eye to our evidence and discounted what the Senators say.

This restraining order was done this way.
1. Our Attorney's office was notified at 12:30pm on the 15th of March while he was in court in downtown Chicago.
2. The range owner was served at 1:45pm the same day.
3. Court call was at 2pm in Lasalle Co. in front of Judge Daugherity and he signed the restraining order at that time.
I have no idea how we could have gotten legal representation or ourselves into the court to offset this in time.

We are going to continue to fight this and we appreciate everyones support here and on other boards and forums.
As the Manager and SRSO at the range and having been a shooter there over a long period I have strived to make the range as safe and user friendly as possible given the amount of people we see every season. There is a lot more I want to do to the range to improve it, but every time this legal BS comes up it takes away from the operating budget and projects get put on the back burner so to speak.
The bottom line here is this: The range is in a fight with the IDNR for allegedly being unsafe. We are fighting to save our business and you need to fight to save a place to shoot and practice our sport of shooting. I also lost a place to shoot the same as you guys, I can't afford the dues to join a club. If this keeps happening in this state we will be able to have firearms still, just no where to shoot them. After they are finished with us they will attack some other range using your tax dollars to do it. And on ,and On.

Thanks for letting me rant and get this off my chest.
Hopefully I'll see some of you again at the range.
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