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WOODS ‘N’ WATER: Blue Trail recognized for work done right

WOODS ‘N’ WATER: Blue Trail recognized for work done right


How do we stop the madness? It seems like the world has gone crazy, especially with the mass shootings that have caused so much heartache and grief.

It wasn’t all that long ago that our world seemed to be a more peaceful place. Firearms being used for drive-by shootings and massacres of innocent children and adults was basically unheard of.

With all of the horrendous shootings being done by the criminal element and deranged individuals across our nation, honest, hardworking firearms owners have been put under close scrutiny by various lawmakers.

A tidal wave of emotion has swept the nation regarding firearms, firearms owners and firearms manufacturers, and with all of the ruthless killing of innocent children and adults, who can blame them?

However, some of this outrage has been directed at the wrong people. I am talking about honest firearms owners and honest enterprises like our own Blue Trail Range.

Blue Trail Range is an excellent example of firearms being used in the proper, safe manner. Over the years, I have had the pleasure of covering some of the Blue Trail shooting events and I am filled with pleasant memories of the owners, the Lyman family, their staff and the shooters who use the range to sharpen their shooting skills on paper targets.

I have seen young shooters, both male and female, shooting in competition at Blue Trail Range. Some of them were so good they received scholarships to various universities because of their shooting skills.

Safety while using a firearm has always been a keyword at Blue Trail Range. Having a chance to talk one on one with some of these young marksmen and women left me with a good feeling that I still carry to this day.

Have you ever noticed that when there is a firearm-related tragedy the news reporters are right on it, but a good safe shooting spot like Blue Trail Range is never mentioned in the news?

Or how about another example of when hundreds of firearms owners (and some who do not own firearms) get together every year for an event like St. Jude Day at the Meriden Rod & Gun Club that makes money for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital? There are no news or TV reporters there to report on honest firearms owners doing good with their legal firearms.

It is not unusual to see shooters who were involved in various shooting competitions at Blue Trail over the years now bring their children and some even their grandchildren to Blue Trail Range to learn the safe and proper use of firearms.

Recently, the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) gave Blue Trail Range a four-star rating for range excellence.

The NSSF is based right here in Connecticut. Formed in 1961, the Foundation has been very active in preserving hunting and shooting sports enjoyed by honest, legal firearms owners.

The NSSF has memberships of thousands of manufacturers, distributors, retailers, ranges and sportsmen’s organizations.

The four-star rating for range excellence awarded to Blue Trail Range is well deserved. The range is known across New England and, over the years, I have witnessed some really great shooting competitions there.

The best part is seeing young shooters using the indoor small-bore range to perfect their skills as they fire at paper bullseye targets. Some of them have gone on to make a name for themselves in the shooting sports.

Started in 1945 by the Lyman family, Blue Trail Range has been the go-to shooting range for more honest firearms owners than I can count. It has a 100-yard shooting range as well as a 50-foot indoor shooting range with 10 shooting positions.

For those who enjoy shooting competitions, Blue Trail has a Bullseye League, a High School League and a Junior Rifle Club. In 2025, Blue Trail Range will be celebrating its 80th year of operation.

To Deb Lyman, President of Blue Trail Range Corporation, and Kyle Overturf, General Manager of the range, and all of their employees, I say well done. You deserve the four-star recognition.

In this world gone out of control with the mass shootings and the taking of innocent lives by deranged individuals, many find it easy to point an accusing finger at just about anyone connected with any type of firearms activity.

It was best said in the quote from Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar: “The evil that men do lives after them, the good is oft interred with their bones.”

This seems to be the dilemma facing everyone connected with the firearms industry no matter what they do. The good things are obliterated by the bad things done with firearms. Will it ever change? I doubt it.

See ya’ and God Bless America and watch over our troops, police, firefighters and first responders wherever they may be serving this great country of ours.