After a story regarding the proximity of the Variety Farms Game Preserve to Round Elementary School, several Patch readers wrote in defense of the preserve.
"I have hunted at Variety Farms with my son and friends and as it states in your story that Variety Farms is a Bird hunting preserve," Scott Tobel wrote. "The McDevitt family found a bullet that hit there home. Well this is an unfortunate incident by all means, but I have been upland bird hunting for well over 30 years and there is no hunter out there that loads there weapon with a round that carries a bullet.
"Bird hunting weapons consisting of a shotgun with BB's in the shell with a maximum range of 100 yds or less. A weapon that shoots a bullet can be fired from anywhere from a few yards to several Miles away," Tobel commented.
Hartland reader Barry Tackett agreed with Tobel writing, "the state law is you can't discharge a firearm within 400 feet of an occupied structure (this may not be the exact wording on the law), as stated by Mr. Tobel, this is a facility for bird hunting, and this activity is done primarily with a firearm with a maximum range of around 300 feet (approx). At 400 feet I don't think any appropriate loading for any bird hunting would have enough power to bruise a peach. And to further add to the argument, Variety farms mandates steel shot only, steel shot is lighter than lead shot and loses energy much faster.
As long as Variety farms stays within the state law, and continues to use steel shot I don't see where there is a problem," Tackett continued. "Before people start blaming firearms, they need to get more information on the real problem, where was the "bullet" found? what caliber is it? etc.
"If the bullet was found in the north side of a house that is on the north side of the road (Round school is on the south side, Variety shares a common border to the schools south) then the "bullet" could not have come from the farm, just to the west, on the north side of the road, just a few summers ago, someone was conducting CPL classes, including live fire training, from their home. Could the bullet have come from there?" Tackett wrote. "Too many unanswered questions to do anything but inflame the uninformed."
However, Kristine S. wrote that she was unaware of the game preserves location and questioned the possibilty of not allowing hunting on school days.
"I never knew this was there and so close to the school & playground. I went to the Round school & now my daughter goes," she wrote. "Why can't they simply not allow hunting while school is in session? I think the safety of our kids is more important than an activity done for fun. I understand that most hunters probably respect the boundaries and are careful, but we all know all it fakes is one person who doesn't care to follow the rules.
"How unfortunate and tragic would it be if it took a child being injured or killed to make the change occurr?! Everyone needs to be reasonable and make compromises to ensure the kids are safe," she wrote.