Image by Boch.
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Not everyone has ready access to firearms and a place to shoot. Especially young folks who live in cities like Chicago and the suburbs. However, each year at State Representative Chris Miller’s Father-Son Camp in East Central Illinois, everyone has a chance to shoot rifles and shotguns under the watchful eyes of safety officers.

The annual Father-Son Camp began with three dads spending the weekend with their sons almost thirty years ago. It grew in following years with more dads bringing their boys, sharing some bonding time, a love of the outdoors and Christian ministry.

Today, hundreds of young people participate in Miller’s camp each year, along with dads.  And volunteers like those of us at the rifle line helped to make it fun for participants.

Of the kids of varying ages who came through my lane, close to half had never touched a real gun before. They loved the experience and their faces beamed with pride when they saw their targets.

About ten of us coached the kids, young and old. We helped shape some very positive memories that will remain with them for many years.

Image by Boch.

While astroturf-supported “activists” like David Hogg claim that young people can’t stand guns, I got just the opposite vibe from actual American kids at the camp. They loved the outdoors and fun with guns, as well as the archery station not far away.

These kids would have stayed and shot all day long if given the opportunity.

Me with a young man who wanted to shoot the AR-15/22. Image by Keith Pippin. Used with permission.

We met some great people. Daniel was the second shooter of the day for me. He had never fired a gun before and had already grown past seven feet tall as a teen.

Image by Justin Bawcum, used with permission.

I stand six feet tall and look like a runt compared to Daniel. No, he didn’t shoot the “youth” sized rifle, but the AR-15/22 with the stock fully extended.

We all had a great time sharing the fun and excitement of shooting with young people and watching their big smiles.

 

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11 COMMENTS

    • and just look at all the scary black rifles and magazines… the world is doomed, the streets are going to run red with rivers of blood, there will be murders every 10 seconds, and 100% of homes will be invaded and everyone in the whole country killed when someone throws an empty 30 round magazine at someone else, and its all the fault of the Central Illinois Father-Son Camp.

  1. Excellent.

    Thanks for your efforts to continue to show and train the youth of America in the joys of shooting sports.

  2. Awesome! I am a city kid whose parents did not think kids should learn anything about guns. It sucked, all my friends got to shoot and I could not. I have them now and can shoot, and have introduced my children and grandchildren to them, except for my daughter’s kids whose father thinks are too young.

    I would really like to see shooting sports days for poor kids, so they can learn gun safety and responsibility. If the moms do not trust old white men to do the right thing with their children, I would hope that many men/women of color could step up and teach. This would be a good use of the NRA’s(or other pro gun organizations’) money.

    • “…shooting sports days for poor kids…” Back in the 80s when I was a kid, those days were called Boy Scout Camp. Maybe not now, since the BSA has become part of clown world.

      I learned to shoot by getting my Rifleman merit badge and taking the state Hunter Safety course at scout camp. There were long lines for all the activities at the lake, but I spent every single second I could at the rifle range.

      Didn’t shoot again for decades, but when I bought myself a .22 rifle 10 years ago, it all came back — and I made sure to teach my kids. A lot of great family moments there.

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