Michigan- Island Lake - The Anti's are Outnumber us.


February 9, 2004, 09:24 PM
Don Hughes and Neva Li delivered 3,000 petitions to the Green Oak township board a month or so ago, but unfortunately, the township did not pass them along to the DNR, whose hands this is in. So far, the DNR has been getting bombarded by the other side and not hearing a lot from us. We need to get mobilized to get the word out.

For those of you who haven't done it yet..you need to write to the DNR and tell them how important the range is to keep open. They not only need to hear from us, they want to, so be sure to be polite. :)

We also need you to show up 2/18 at Green Oak Township Hall at 7:30, for the township meeting there. 10001 Silver Lake Road Brighton, Michigan 48116 (810).231.1333.


Island Lake Recreation Area
There is an effort under way to close down this newer public range in the Brighton Area due to noise complaints from neighbors (the nearest of which lives a mile away, according to the DNR.) The range has 50 covered shooting positions for 100 yards, 25 for 50 yards, and 25 for 25 yards and free targets. Noise buffers have been installed to help keep the peace but the opposition continues.

Please contact the following people and voice your polite support for this range:
Kirsten Simmons (517-335-0153.) She is with the governor's office and is handling the Island Lake Issue.

Department of Natural Resources

Executive Division
Attention: Teresa Gloden
P.O. BOX 30028
Lansing, MI 48909
517-373-2352 GLODENT@Michigan.gov

Mary C. Brown (269-344-3738) DNR Commissioner

Keith J. Charters (231-947-7566)DNR Commissioner, CHARTERK@Michigan.gov

Bob Garner (231-779-9866)DNR Commissioner GARNERB@Michigan.gov

Gerald R. Hall, Jr. (989-271-9001)DNR Commissioner

John Madigan (906-387-4468)DNR Commissioner MADIGAJ@Michigan.gov

William Parfet (616-668-3336)DNR Commissioner PARFETW@Michigan.gov

Frank C. Wheatlake (231-832-2258)DNR Commissioner WHEATLAF@Michigan.gov

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February 9, 2004, 09:28 PM
Someone need to make us up a kind of form letter to email all these people .. Im not the best at doing the emails for this kind of stuff :) hook us up

February 9, 2004, 09:34 PM
I'll have you one by tomorrow!


February 9, 2004, 09:36 PM
I figured ya would come though. someone more well spoken than me :)

February 9, 2004, 09:37 PM
Someone volunteered to do that kind of thing last week. Just shot her an email.

Just curious: Do I know you? It's always hard to figure out who folks are on message boards.

February 9, 2004, 09:43 PM
Not that i know of unless ive bumped into you at the range in westland or you live out in the pickney area/whitmore lake area

February 9, 2004, 09:45 PM
Thanks for the update Barbara. Haven't been to the range in the last couple months due to the weather but it's a great place. It would be a bad thing to lose it.

Thanks for the heads up on the meeting and the contact information as well. I'll put the contact info to use and try to make the meeting. I'd be interested in a template for letters too, that I could modify but keep the general message.

February 10, 2004, 09:11 PM
Our ghost writer has said tomorrow. We'll get you fixed up. Sorry for the delay.

To update the meeting schedule for Island Lake:

Dates to remember are as follows:
February 17th, 7:00 pm.: Brighton Township meeting..the range is in Green Oaks but the complainers are from Brighton.
4363 Buno Road, Brighton, MI 48114.

February 18th, 7:00 pm.: Green Oaks. 10001 Silver Lake Road, Brighton

March 4th, 4:00 pm. Lansing Center, 333 E. Michigan, Lansing.

We need support at all of them, but especially at the DNR meeting on 3/4.

We also need letters to all of them. Pam Benzing is willing to draft some if anyone is uncomfortable writing but wants to show their support. Either write to her or write to me directly. Either way, we'll fix you up. The letters don't have to be anything fancy, short and polite is good.

(We can use more ghost writers for various activism. Let me know if you can help.)

More info will be posted to the website in the next few days.

(Oops..forgot to mention the website. Under construction, but up. Stop by a visit. www.firearmsalliance.org )

Mark Tyson
February 10, 2004, 09:41 PM
When you're done haranguing your local government, consider writing your congressmen about a solution that will solve the noise problems of those sensitive suburbanites.

See this thread for details:


February 10, 2004, 10:30 PM
Well its offical i wont be able to make it due to work but i will email away

February 12, 2004, 04:16 AM
Sorry for the delay. Sample letter in your mail. :)

That's too bad that you can't make the meeting..maybe you can come up for the shoot on Saturday?

Sleeping Dog
February 12, 2004, 07:43 AM
Mark Tyson wrote:
consider writing your congressmen about a solution that will solve the noise problems of those sensitive suburbanites.

I'm 100% behind this effort, but I doubt we will ever be able to stop the noise coming from sensitive suburbanites. ;)

Meanwhile, I'll write to the the list of DNR folks, governor, and my state congressman about keeping Island Lake shooting range open. I like shooting there.


February 12, 2004, 07:11 PM
gotta works sat now they changed my shift

February 12, 2004, 07:34 PM
Well, good news, anyway..I got the results of one sound level check that shows that ambient noise levels are, on average, much higher than the sounds from the range. The DNR has commissioned their own study, and that should be available in March. This is good news for us, though.

Sorry to hear about the work thing, TC..maybe next time..are you in Wayne County?

February 12, 2004, 07:37 PM
unfortunally yes

February 12, 2004, 08:29 PM
Heh..imagine that..its right there next to your name.

I bet we'll meet up sooner or later. I'm generally off rabble-rousing somewhere.

If you, or anyone else, is in the Lansing area on Wednesday, the 18th, there is a committee hearing on three antique firearms bills.

February 12, 2004, 09:16 PM
The following is the email I sent to all email addresses Barbara listed:

Dear Title Last Name,

Please do everything in you power to prevent the closing of the Island Lake Recreation Area shooting range.

I understand there are some who oppose it's existence due to excessive noise. I also understand that the nearest residents are a mile away and noise buffers have been installed to help the situation. In my opinion, anyone can deduce that the noise produced from such a shooting facility heard from a mile away is hardly noise at all, but just sound in the distance. Every-day sounds in one's neighborhood, automobiles, motorcycles, lawnmowers, snowblowers, etc. are certainly louder than gunfire a mile away. In light of common sense, I have to wonder what the true intentions are of those who oppose the existence of this shooting facility.

In this land of the free, please do whatever you can to help assure that those who wish to use this shooting range are free to do so.

My Real Name
My Real Address

Hope it helps. I will call the others and my senator and congressman as soon as I can.

February 12, 2004, 09:34 PM
E,ails Away i Hope This will take care of it. If there is anything else i can do ill try to help out

Sleeping Dog
February 13, 2004, 06:47 AM
The ambient noise study should be interesting. If a housing area is half a mile away, there should be many things making more decibels: lawn mowers, snow blowers, personal watercraft, snowmobiles, boomboxes, kids yelling at each other, parents yelling at kids, kids burning rubber on the street, trucks with big subwoofers, leaf blowers, lawn edgers, motorcycles, dogs barking, maybe other stuff. Weekends are the loudest days.

I think the range is only open from 10am to 5pm, and shooting is about 10:20 to 4:45, allowing for target setup and end-of-day cleanup and packing the guns away. If the firing is outside those hours, it's either illegal or the state is letting cops or National Guard use it for night training. I don't know the closing time of the shotgun course, but it's probably the same.


February 13, 2004, 12:32 PM
I suggest also printing your e-mail, signing it, and mailing it to the DNR. They count paper letters a lot higher than e-mails because most of the people that are too lazy to send a paper letter are too lazy to do anything against them politically.

February 13, 2004, 10:22 PM
Michigander, that's a great letter. Could we use it on our "sample letters" page?

Thanks for writing all. The other side is hammering them and we need to make ourselves heard.

February 13, 2004, 10:32 PM
Michigander, that's a great letter. Could we use it on our "sample letters" page?

Thanks for the compliment.

And certainly you can use it. Hope it helps.

February 13, 2004, 10:32 PM
Some of the emails bounced back to me today undeliverable.. and i got a responce from one of the people... Was pretty fast

February 13, 2004, 11:14 PM
Yes. Some of my emails bounced back too.

February 14, 2004, 08:03 AM
Hmm..which ones bounced? I mailed a letter, so didn't email, too. Maybe I should have.

Thanks for the use of the letter..we want to build a stock of them to make it easier for people to write to officials.

February 16, 2004, 06:43 PM
Hmm..which ones bounced?

The message that you sent was undeliverable to the following:
PARFETW@Michigan.gov (user not found)

The message that you sent was undeliverable to the following:
WHEATLAF@Michigan.gov (user not found)

The message that you sent was undeliverable to the following:
MADIGAJ@Michigan.gov (user not found)

The message that you sent was undeliverable to the following:
CHARTERK@Michigan.gov (user not found)

February 16, 2004, 06:54 PM
I received one reply thus far.

It was from Representative Chris Ward.

It was polite and cordial but one sentence seemed a bit strange. He wrote,

It has never been my intention to completely close any portion of the
shooting range.

What does this mean? Does it mean he has the intention of partially closing some portions of the range? You can see the email I sent to him (posted above) and I did not indicate that he intended any such thing. I suppose he may be leaving wiggle room for compromise later. What do you make of it?

February 16, 2004, 06:56 PM
Michigander I got the same letter must have been a form responce letter

Sleeping Dog
February 17, 2004, 04:28 PM
Portions of the range?

The only thing I can make of this is someone is thinking of shutting down the rifle range while retaining the shotgun courses.


February 17, 2004, 07:19 PM
Or the other way around. Since the shotgun ranges are privately operated maybe they would be easier to close. They are also open later during the summer, they may try to make them close at 4:00 or 5:00 pm whenever the rifle range closes. They would stink too as it's nice to be able to shoot after work.

We need to continue getting the word out to fellow shooters (oustide of this board) to speak up.

February 17, 2004, 08:24 PM
Man, that's a damn shame, I come up that way often. I'm in Howell about twice a month and that's a nice area up there.

I'll fire off some e-mails for you guys but I doubt my Ohio address will be much help.

February 17, 2004, 10:09 PM
Attended Brighton Twp. meeting..3 other gunnies..3 antis, who apparently attend each meeting and make their case..a long drawn out affair reaching back to the master plan developed in 1974..presumably before the spokesperson was born.

Another one tomorrow..Green Oak Twp...if anyone can show up and support us, it would be very appreciated..the township boards are hearing a lot from the other side.

Sleeping Dog
February 19, 2004, 12:32 PM
Well, I mailed a few letters, but couldn't make it to the meetings. Where is Green Oak township?

How did Wednesday's meeting go?


February 19, 2004, 10:54 PM
Same three antis, plus a new one..me and Dawn Matti on our side.

Green Oak is in Brighton, also. The range is actually in Green Oak Township, the complainers live in Brighton.

Seems there is just a small group of them but they make sure to attend everything.

Meetings are 1st and 3rd Tuesdays (Brighton) and 1st and 3rd Wednesdays (Green Oak.) I'll make as many as I can, but its just about a 80 miles from home and makes for late evenings. I'm going to shoot for 2 a month.

The whole thing will be won or lost with the DNR but public perception and township perception has an effect there, too.

February 28, 2004, 01:46 AM
Back to the top..new meetings next week..Brighton Twp. on Tuesday, 7:30, and Green Oak (also in Brighton) on Wednesday, at 7:00. The Brighton meetings seem to go very quickly..the Green Oaks meetings take forever.

There is also an NRC meeting in Lansing next Thursday at 4:00 (I think..I'll have to check exact time/place.) This is where the decisions get made and we need to show our strengths there.

Anyone catch the article in the local paper about the range?

Wiegand gung-ho to stop gun noise

Jenness and Rick Wiegand weren't naive when they began searching for a home in Livingston County in 1991.

They knew the county was growing, so it was important to pick a place where development wouldn't envelop them. They wanted a peaceful place to raise a family and enough acreage so Jenness could continue a hobby she loved: riding her horses. They found a home in Brighton Township on a dead-end road. It abutted Kensington Metropark.

They paid a premium price for the dilapidated home on 15 acres and threw themselves into fixing it up. They soon had a beautiful home and a fenced riding area surrounded by trees and tranquility. It was perfect.

Until the shooting range moved in.

The Island Lake State Recreation Area shooting range opened three years ago in Green Oak Township next to I-96, less than a mile from the Wiegands' home. They say gun noise from the range has become excessive and prevents them from enjoying the outdoors.

As the noise grew, so did Jenness' frustration and anger. She stopped riding her horses because it became dangerous since the animals were getting spooked by the gun noise. She decided she had to do something. Jenness, now a mother of five children, admitted she knew very little about local government and had never been involved with government issues. It didn't stop her from becoming a community activist.

"I didn't know what a township was," said Jenness, who grew up in metro Detroit.

Jenness called the Department of Natural Resources (DNR), which oversees the state park. It took her two weeks before she found the right person. She talked with him for 45 minutes but didn't get anywhere.

"There's nothing I could do about it," Jenness said was the response. Although that message became a theme often repeated by government officials, Jenness didn't give up. She kept calling and calling, climbing the ladder of the DNR until she reached the top.

Meanwhile, the noise grew louder in 2003 and was heard more often.

"I just went out of my mind," she said. It only made her more determined.

"I called everyone, and every single person told me there was nothing I could do," she said.

Jenness found plenty to do. She and her family printed up fliers about the noise and distributed them to local homes. They soon started getting calls from other neighbors upset about the noise.

Starting last year, Jenness and her husband began attending and speaking at township board meetings, explaining the issue and asking for help. Their cause didn't involve only them. Jenness and Rick would bring all their children, ages 3-12, to the meetings. It's a tradition they continue now. They've also attended DNR meetings in Lansing.

Although some folks wouldn't feel comfortable bringing young children to public meetings, the Wiegands do. Their children behave well. They also believe their children are learning about government.

"They see us standing up for what we believe is true," Rick Wiegand said.

Jenness said her husband has been very supportive. She said Rick has stayed up late many nights getting information on the issue by going on-line. She also said other residents have been very active in the shooting range issue.

Although she at first was nervous standing and speaking in public, Jenness said she has grown more comfortable. Her husband isn't surprised by her persistence.

"Jenness is never been one to let people push her around," Rick said.

Jenness said she's learned a lot about challenging government officials to bring about change. The noise issue remains a problem. She said it's a long process, and it's not easy. Her only words of advice to others who decide to get involved is keep at it.

"You just keep going on and don't stop," Jenness said. "And I'm not going to stop."

About Jenness Wiegand

Age: 46

Residence: Brighton Township

How you know her: Brighton Township activist who is trying to get the noise reduced at the Island Lake State Recreation Area shooting range. She used to work as an interior architectural designer.

Hobbies: Jenness loves to ride horses, and it's been her passion for many years. She rides summer and winter. Jenness used to ride her horses every day, but doesn't anymore due to the noise from a nearby shooting range. She's thrown all her energy into reducing noise at the shooting range.

Family: Married to Rick for 13 years. They have five children: Tyler, 12; Ryan, 10; Jason, 9; Lauren, 7; and Kaitlyn, 3.

You ever notice how sometimes even when someone has views that oppose yours, you still find yourself having a certain amount of respect for their abilities to argue well, or for having deep convictions or you think they are simply misguided?

Well, I didn't get any of those things from Ms. Wiegand.

And just WTH is an Argus?

February 28, 2004, 09:52 AM
Well I think we should get her horses to quit making the area smell. It is making the shooters gag.

Dan from MI
February 28, 2004, 10:27 AM
A little background here.(I'm waiting for a FOIA response from Green Oak)

Island Lake is on a border area of Green Oak and Brighton Townships.

If the complainers are in Brighton, there's at least 1/2-1 mile away, crossing over the I-96 Expressway.

Then much of the area there is the Kensington Metro Park. There's some houses on the other side of Kensington Road, but the rest is North of there.

Chris Ward is a good guy and I voted for him when I lived near Brighton. I'm not worried about him.

And an Argus is a leftist rag.

March 1, 2004, 06:04 PM
Am I incorrect in believing what I see in movies and such where people ride horseback and shoot guns (although probably blanks) and the horse barely seems to notice? Wouldn't it seem that a horse could and would get used to the sound from over a mile away? Are the horses continuously spooked when the gun range is open? Doesn't seem likely or logical to me.


March 1, 2004, 08:17 PM
Any word on those studies yet, Dan?

March 3, 2004, 04:50 AM
I hope anyone who lives near there will try to attend the meeting tonight or the NRC meeting Thursday in Lansing.

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