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Holyoke Revolver Club planning to celebrate its centennial

Aug. 29, 2014 | By Lori Szepelak

Daniel Jones of Westfield and Ron Mehlhorn of South Hadley are active members of the Holyoke Revolver Club that will celebrate its 100th anniversary this fall with a special banquet on Oct. 25. Jones, who serves as governor of the organization, and Mehlhorn as a director, are pictured at one of the club’s outdoor ranges on West Cherry Street.
Reminder Publications photo by Lori Szepelak

HOLYOKE – From junior leagues and fun shoots to safety courses and instructor classes, the Holyoke Revolver Club offers the avid shooting enthusiast a wide range of shooting options on its 35 acres.

“We are marking our 100th anniversary this fall with a special celebration and banquet,” said Norm Desilets, president, told Reminder Publications on Aug. 6.

Desilets and his board members run a tight ship with the ultimate goal of ensuring a safe environment for persons with firearms. Each month new members are inducted and on Aug. 6 there were 10 members welcomed into the club. The current membership is now close to 550.
“We are hoping that not only members but area residents will attend our event which will feature speaker Jim Wallace of the Gun Owners’ Action League (GOAL),” he said.
GOAL, established in 1974, is the official state firearms association in Massachusetts, with members who “believe in the basic right of firearms ownership for competition, recreation and self-protection,” according to its website.
Wallace, as executive director, supervises legal, clerical, fundraising, publication and legislative activities of the organization. Policies and direction of GOAL are established by the member elected board of directors, all of who serve voluntarily. The GOAL headquarters is based in Northboro.
The evening affair will take place at the Castle of Knights, 1599 Memorial Dr., Chicopee. The event begins with social networking from 5 to 7 p.m., followed by a buffet at 7 p.m. that includes beef, chicken and fish entrees with several side dishes and dessert. Tickets are $40 per person.
Following dinner and opening remarks, as well as welcomes from state Sen. Donald Humason Jr., representing the Second Hampden and Hampshire districts, and former state Sen. Michael Knapik, now executive director of university advancement at Westfield State University, Wallace will deliver the keynote message.

Throughout the evening there will also be special raffles including one at $20 per ticket to win a Henry .22 Goldenboy rifle, another $20 raffle at a chance to win one of four guns including rifles, shotguns and hand guns, and 15 tickets for $10 which will include a variety of prizes including a gun safe from Eastern Security, a limited edition GOAL knife, a red dot pistol scope, club safety courses, a reloading kit and .45 caliber bullets, a lottery tree, a buck hunting knife and an American flag from the State House, donated by Humason. A 50-50 raffle is also planned.
For everyone purchasing a ticket, the stub will also be an opportunity to win a .45 caliber Auto Ordnance pistol.
Desilets noted that area residents attending the event do not have to be a member to attend, however, if you win one of the guns that evening, you must have a gun license.
The deadline to purchase tickets is Oct. 11. For more information visit www.holyokerevolverclub.com or call 539-9345. Tables of eight can be reserved.
Sponsorship opportunities are also available by advertising in the event program book, donating a raffle prize, or purchasing a display table to showcase one’s business or service.
“This is a great opportunity to promote your organization or business in front of a large number of shooting sports enthusiasts,” Desilets said.
Throughout the year the club offers NRA basic pistol safety courses, Shooting 101, a NRA pistol instructor course, fun shoots, a Pistol League, a Junior Pistol Team and a Junior Rifle Program, and NRA reloading classes.
All applicants for membership must have passed an NRA Handgun Safety Course and received a Massachusetts State Police certificate, be at least 21 years of age and have a valid license to carry. Juniors are sponsored by a club member or enter through the Junior Rifle Team. Juniors must also take and pass the Junior Rifle Safety Course or Basic Pistol Safety Course.
Applicants must attend a membership meeting to be voted in. Membership meetings are conducted the first Wednesday of each month at 7 p.m. at the club. For membership forms and dues information, visit the club’s website, call 539-9345 or email Bill Burgess at hrc-member-sec@comcast.net.

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