Members and friends of the Rod and Gun Club celebrated their annual dinner Saturday, secure in the knowledge that they make a major contribution to public understanding of the natural world and ready to face the other challenges that await them in the future.
One of those challenges, said Club President Gary Krestinsky, is a planned move from Camozzi Road to a new site for the club house and gun range off Westside Road near the Revelstoke Dam.
“Times have changed,” he said during an interview at the dinner. “There are new people moving here with a different mentality.”
He said development near Camozzi Road has brought in new residents who are uncomfortable being near a shooting range.
“We realize things are changing,” Krestinsky said. “We realize there’s a potential safety problem and the range doesn’t meet our needs.”
As a result, the club has been negotiating for new land near the dam — several kilometres from residential developments — where it believes it can move its club house and build a new and larger range that would permit the club to hold larger shooting competitions.
The club needs to conduct an archaeological survey at the new site and an environmental assessment at the old shooting range as there is a lot of lead in the ground from years of shooting. How much and whether the lead-contaminated soil can simply be trucked away and buried or must be shipped to Edmonton for treatment remains to be seen.
But don’t expect a move anytime soon. Krestinsky it could be two years before all the paperwork and studies are completed.
As Krestinsky spoke his wife, Maryanne, surveyed the crowd of 309 club members and their friends and family members. The fact that the annual dinner attracts families is significant.
“This really is a family affair,” she said. “We do things outdoors with our families because we love nature. So we celebrate as families, too.”
And celebrate they did. You can photos of the annual dinner below: