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Thursday Bulletin – April 11, 2024

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Thursday Bulletin – April 11, 2024

April 11, 2024

Executive Director’s Message
Richard Pearson

Count-Down to IGOLD!
Illinois Gun Owner Lobby Day is just a week away, on Thursday April 18. If you haven’t already made plans to attend, please reconsider and join us. If you’ve never attended, I guarantee it will be an opportunity to learn more about how we lobby the legislators, and it will be an experience you will never forget. Come join us and be a force with other like-minded, law-abiding gun owners!

Red Dot Sights
Red dot sights, particularly micro red dot sights, suddenly seem to be a hot topic. For whatever reason, I have gotten a lot of requests about red dot sights in the last 30 days. Red dot sights have been around for some time. Each year, they improve and become more miniaturized. Red dot sights have helped older shooters enjoy the shooting sports much longer. There is no question about that.
Red dot sights offer advantages. More and more people are equipping their self-defense firearms with red dot sights. The hope is of course, that they will become better shots, and faster shots in self-defense situations. Sometimes, that is undoubtedly true. One must be careful, however, not to think that red dot sights will make up for poor marksmanship skills. They will not do that.

The basic fundamentals are paramount to firing accurate shots, no matter what sight you use. The number one shooting fundamental that must be practiced is trigger pull, with proper grip following close behind. I also believe that one should not rely on red dot sights alone. Firearms should have both red dot sights and traditional iron sights, just in case the optical sight fails. The term for this is co-witnessing.

March Gun Sales Top Previous Month
Last month was the seventh-highest March on record, since the National Instant Criminal Background Check System was established, over 20 years ago. The numbers by the National Shooting Sports Foundation, which removes all gun permit checks and rechecks, gives an adjusted figure of 1,442,061 for March 2024, which is higher than February 2024 of 1,343,478.

This is the 56th month in a row that over a million firearms have been sold. Gun sales are an important aspect of gun rights. The more people who buy guns, the more people who will in time become advocates for the right to keep and bear arms. Typically, gun owners become gun voters, and that’s a very good thing!

Range Open House Tours
On Saturday, April 20th, we will have open house tours available in the morning and afternoon for people who want to join the ISRA range. The morning session is from 10:00 am until 11:30 am, and the afternoon session is from 1:00 pm until 2:30 pm. A second day of tours will be held on May 18 at the same times of the day. You do not have to call ahead to take the tour. If you cannot make either of these dates, please call The Range at 815-939-1909 to schedule a tour. We hope to see you at the ISRA Range! 

More buses have been added incl:  Alton, Decatur, East Peoria – Visit the IGOLD Page for more information.

Vendor Booth Space at IGOLD

ONLY A FEW SPACES LEFT – RESERVE ASAP. First come, first served. Tables & chairs will be ­provided (8-foot tables). The Illinois State Rifle Association reserves the right to approve all vendors. Call 815-635-3198 or email Mel or Shirley. Cost: $100.


If you and at least 2 other members of your gun club come to IGOLD, we’d like you to please stand when we announce it, so we can recognize your club.

Turkey Hunting Information

For more information on the Spring Turkey Hunting Seasons, go to


April 11, 1803 – The Louisiana Purchase
French Foreign Minister Talleyrand offers to sell the Louisiana Territory to the United States. The price was $11,250,000 – a bargain at that time. Napoleon had hoped to occupy Louisiana Territory, but realized his battle with the British would take all his military resources, so he offered to sell it to the United States. Napoleon said, “The sale of Louisiana assures forever the power of the United States.”  Later he wrote, “I have given England a rival, who sooner or later, will humble her pride”. Napoleon was right. 

 April 11, 1814 – Napoleon Abdicates the Throne
Napoleon Bonaparte, emperor of France was forced to abdicate the throne and was exiled to the Mediterranean island of Elba. In March 1815, he escaped and returned to Paris, where he regained support and reclaimed the throne, and became known as the emperor, Napoleon I.

In June 1815 he was defeated at the Battle of Waterloo. This time he was exiled to the remote island of Saint Helena in the South Atlantic. Napoleon died in 1821, at the age of 52, supposedly of stomach cancer but more likely he was poisoned. Whatever the case, Napoleon turned out to be a friend of the United States, even though his motives were his own.

April 12, 1861 – Beginning of the Civil War
The Confederates fired on Union-held Fort Sumter, in South Carolina’s Charleston Harbor.

April 12, 1954 – “Rock Around the Clock” Puts its Mark on Rock & Roll History
Bill Haley and His Comets recorded “We’re Gonna Rock Around The Clock”. The song was chosen to play over the opening credits of the movie, “Blackboard Jungle”. In one month, during the spring of 1955, “We’re Gonna Rock Around The Clock” sold a million copies. As it’s stated in a later song, “Rock ‘N’ Roll is Here to Stay”.

April 14, 1865 – President Lincoln Shot
John Wilkes Booth shoots Abraham Lincoln in the head, at Ford Theater in Washington, D.C.

April 14, 1918 – First Dogfight Over Western Front
American pilots engaged in the first dogfight against enemy aircraft over the western front, during World War I. The two pilots, Douglas Campbell and Alan Winslow, who were part of the U.S. First Aero Squadron, shot down two German two-seaters. By the end of May, Campbell had shot down five enemy aircraft, making him America’s first “flying ace”.

April 15, 1865 – President Abraham Lincoln Dies
He was the first American president assassinated. His death came only six days after the Confederate surrender in the Civil War. Lincoln had wanted the North and the South to work together after the Civil War. Because of the assassination by Confederate sympathizer, John Wilkes Booth, all hopes of that happening died too. It was a sad day, in more ways than one. The hunt began for John Wilkes Booth. Pursued by the army and security forces, he was finally cornered near Bowling Green, Virginia and was killed with a bullet to the head.

April 15, 1947 – Jackie Robinson Becomes the First African American Player in The Major Leagues
On April 15, 1997, the 50th anniversary of Robinson’s first Major League Baseball (MLB) game, the league retires Jackie Robinson’s number 42, across all teams in the league. This was the first time all teams had retired a player’s number.

April 15 – Every Year Your income taxes are due today. I just didn’t want you to forget.

April 16, 1881 – Western Gunslinger’s Last Shootout
Bat Masterson, famous western lawman and gunfighter fought his last gun fight in Dodge City, Kansas. Since no-one was killed, no serious charges were imposed against Masterson. He had to pay a fine of eight dollars, and never again did he fight in a gun battle.

Masterson was originally from Watseka Illinois and went west as a young man. He alternated between being sheriff and saloon keeper. He had a reputation for being a tough customer. On the evening of April 16, 1881, Masterson boarded the train and headed for New York City where he became a sportswriter. An icon of the Old West, he finally died of a heart attack in October 1921, at his newspaper desk in New Your City. Too bad such a great man had to come to a bad end.

April 17, 1790 – Benjamin Franklin Dies
American statesman, printer, scientist and writer, Benjamin Franklin dies at age 84. To describe all the accomplishments of Benjamin Franklin would take 1000 pages or more. He was truly a great American and set the United States on a successful course up to this point in history. He had many accomplishments, but one of my favorites is the “Join, or Die” flag, which helped the colonies unite. That is still good advice today. I’m sure if you didn’t know about the Illinois State Rifle Association, he would tell you to do just that.

The Illinois State Rifle Association
is the home of marksmanship in Illinois. 
At the Range

Click here to view the entire calendar. All classes and events are open to the public & all range members, unless otherwise noted.  here

Project Appleseed Class April 20 – 21, 2024

Rifle marksmanship and history class of 1775. Open to the public. Spots are available. Project Appleseed is the primary focus of the Revolutionary War Veteran’s Association (RWVA). It was formed solely to revitalize America’s heritage of rifle marksmanship and to promote America’s Revolutionary War history.  Whether you’re a new shooter or a seasoned marksman, Project Appleseed can help transform you from a person with a rifle into a principled and skilled Rifleman or Riflewoman.

This is a traditional 25m Project Appleseed rifle event. Both Centerfire and .22 Rimfire rifles are allowed at this event. The fee is $10 per day, per person (Range fee).

For more details and to register online, click here, or email: Chuck Apger, 

Bullseye Match

This is a national match course for Rim Fire and/or Center Fire. The first match is April 21st, held at the ISRA Range. Click here for details and complete match schedule.

The ISRA Range is located at 1589 N 7000w Rd, Bonfield, IL 60913.

The ISRA Range offers great classes and leagues
for shooting enthusiasts!
Interested in joining a league?
Just show up 15 – 30 minutes early.
Range memberships are available.
A day at the ISRA Range is always a  great day!

Thank you for being a member!


If you are not an ISRA member,  join today
Upcoming Meetings:
Upcoming Range Events:

Upcoming Gun Shows & Events

While the gun show information shown in this email is believed to be correct – sometimes changes occur. This is provided for informational purposes only.

If your club or organization is holding a gun show, event or class, let us know the details, and we’d be happy to post it in our Thursday Bulletin.

Looking for a Hunter Safety Class?  You can them here throughout the state on the IDNR website, which lists classes by county and date: 

Apr 13 – 14   Chillicothe Sportsmen’s Gun & Knife Show, Chillicothe Sportsmen’s Club House, Chillicothe

Apr 14   Kane County Sportsman’s Show, Kane County Fairgrounds, St. Charles

Apr 18   IGOLD, Bank of Springfield Center, Springfield 

April 20    ISRA Range Open House Tours 

April 20    National Civil War & Collector Arms Show, DuPage Co. Fairgrounds, Wheaton

April 20   Wing Shooting Clinic, Moraine View State Park, Leroy, IL

April 20 – 21   Will County Gun Show, Will County Fairgrounds, Peotone

April 28   McHenry County Sportsman’s Show, Woodstock

May 3 – 5   Pecatonica Gun Show, Winnebago County Fairgrounds, Pecatonica

May 18 – 19   Kankakee Gun & Sportsman’s Show, Kankakee Co. Fairgrounds, Kankakee

May 19   Kane County Sportsman’s Show, Kane County Fairgrounds, St. Charles

Download a Shareable Copy of the Bulletin

“Ninety-eight percent of the people in this country are decent, hardworking, honest Americans. It’s the other lousy two percent that get all the publicity. But then, we elected them.”

Lily Tomlin

“The people who work against your gun rights are basically saying to you, “The right of the criminal to rip you off, rape and kill you shall not be infringed.” And they wonder why we’re a bit testy”

Editor of KABA LIBERTY ADVOCATE, Friday, July 30, 2001

“I declare to you that woman must not depend upon the protection of man, but must be taught to protect herself, and there I take my stand.”


“You may find me one day dead in a ditch somewhere. But by God, you’ll find me in a pile of brass.”

Tpr. M. Padgett

“Using inner city kids as your proof that guns and kids don’t mix, is like using an alcoholic to prove all people will abuse alcohol.”

Lori Broadhead

“How dare politicians continue to pass insane laws forcing good, law-abiding people to be defenseless and helpless.”

Ted Nugent

The said Constitution [shall] never be construed to authorize Congress to infringe or to prevent the people of the United States from keeping their own arms.”

Samuel Adams, Massachusetts' U.S. Constitution Ratification Convention, 1788

“One of the greatest delusions in the world is the hope that the evils in this world are to be cured by legislation.”

Thomas B. Reed (1886)

“No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms.”

Thomas Jefferson, Proposed Virginia Constitution (1776)

“Foolish liberals who are trying to read the Second Amendment out of the Constitution are courting disaster by encouraging others to use the same means to eliminate portions of the constitution THEY don’t like.”

Alan Dershowitz

“Every 13 seconds in America someone uses a gun to stop a crime.”

Sen. Larry Craig

“The AK-47 is not a device of aggression … I devised this machine-gun for the security of my country,”

Mikhail Kalashnikov, April 1997