Hot Topics!

Meeting Minutes for February Membership Meeting (posted February 26, 2015)   Click on the "Member Login" tab to access the member's only area and to read the newly added February 5, 2015 meeting minutes.

When is ice safe? (posted February 23, 2015) There really is no sure answer. You can't judge the strength of ice just by its appearance, age, thickness, temperature, or whether or not the ice is covered with snow. Strength is based on all these factors -- plus the depth of water under the ice, size of the water body, water chemistry and currents, the distribution of the load on the ice, and local climatic conditions.

There is no such thing as 100 percent safe ice.  For your safety, please stay off the ice on our pond at the Chapter grounds.

Reminder: Wild Game Dinner Coming Soon (posted February 20, 2015)  Click on Upcoming Events on the left side of this page for details. This replaces the regular Thursday evening membership meeting for March.

The Password for the Member Login Page has been Changed (posted February 21, 2015)  The access password for the Member Login web page has now been changed to the number that corresponds with the entry gate code.  Look at the back of your 2015 membership card to locate the 2015 gate code. You may now use the 2015 gate code for both entry to the park as well as the password protected Member Login web page

Snowscape at the Chapter Grounds (posted February 19, 2015)  While many of us think it is better that we should stay inside and enjoy the warmth in these frigid days of winter, some members enjoy the beauty and serenity of the Chapter grounds after the recent snowfall of the evening February 16/17, 2015.  See several photos taken on the day after the snow here.

Conditions at the Chapter House and Grounds (posted February 18, 2015)  The temperatures at the Chapter have been no warmer than anywhere else in the region.  It is dangerously cold and likely to be colder before it warms up this week-end.  Be advised there is no plowing service on the roads at the Chapter.  For those that have a desire to access the grounds there is no prohibition but the standard warnings apply:  Stay off the ice on the pond as swimming is not allowed (really it is for your safety); stay away from the beaver dams as traps are still set in that area; no sledding on the face of the dam to conserve the little grass that has not been eaten by the geese (besides you will not appreciate the stuff the geese leave on the dam); and be careful on the access roads as they could be icy and you are on your own if you get stuck and need to be retrieved.  If anyone sees any problems with the utilities, electric wires down, water pipes frozen, etc., please let either Darrel Schultz or Terry Fellinger know and they will decide corrective action needed.  You can find their phone contact number on the Contact Us web page by clicking at the menu listed on the top of this page.  Better weather is ahead!  Has to be.

Events for the Week of February 22 (updated February 21, 2015)
  • Thursday, February 26, 7PM- 9PM Manahoac Bowmen Meeting - IWL RSO & Bowman Member Niki Metterman - Key Steward for Access
  • No other special events are presently planned however it is always prudent to check with the Chapter Calendar at the top of the menu at the left of this page for any last minute changes.

Membership Renewals for 2015 are No Longer Accepted (Updated February 8, 2015)

New Year's Eve was the last opportunity to renew membership without incurring a $20 penalty.  And, if membership had not been paid by February 7, 2015, the delinquent member will be expelled. Postmarks on envelopes sent on Saturday, February 7 will be honored.  The Membership Cards and Shooter's badges for 2014 for members that have renewed will be honored until the Gate code is changed. The date for changing the code has been postponed until February 21, 2015. Any former member that had not renewed by February 7 will need to reapply using the New Membership process.  Again, the Membership Chairman is looking very closely at postmarks on mailed renewals to judge whether renewals were submitted within the extended time allowed.

The Entry Gate Code Change Date has been Postponed Again; now until February 21, 2015  (updated: February 8, 2015)   For those that have renewed and not yet received Membership Cards and Shooting Badges by February 7, we expect not to be able to get them to you much before February 21, 2015 due to a backlog at the National Chapter.  For that reason, the gate code will not be changed until February 21, 2015.  All members without their 2015 memberhip card should continue to use the current 2014 gate code until then.  Members with the new code may use the new code for the Chapter grounds but all must continue to use the 2014 Gate Code for the Member Only login page on the web site.

Summary, use either 2014 or 2015 gate entry code for entering the Chapter grounds until February 21.  Use only 2015 code after February 21.
The Members Login web page will contine to require the 2014 password (2014 gate entry code) until the gate code has been reduced to only the 2015 entry code on February 21.

2015 Rites of Spring Wine Festival Fundraiser (posted February 6, 2015)
On the week-end of March 28 and 29 the Chapter will host the 2015 Rites of Spring Wine Festival at the Chapter grounds. The Chapter receives the parking concession proceeds. Members are asked to volunteer to help support this 2 day event which promises to be well-attended.  Contact Herb Pritchett to volunteer.  The Chapter grounds will be closed to all other Chapter activities for the duration of this two day event. For more information and advanced ticket purchase click on this link

2015 Strategic Planning Update (posted February 6, 2015)
At the February 5th Membership Meeting, Board Director Terry Fellinger presented the status of the 2015 Fredericksburg-Rappahannock IWLA Chapter's strategic planning effort. The presentation can be viewed by clicking here to access the file located in the Member Login area of this website. You will need the gate entry code to obtain access. Use the 2014 code until notified to use the 2015 code.

Beaver Dam Progress (posted February 6, 2015)
Beware: Protect your dogs and children.  Several beavers have been removed from the colony at the south west end of the pond.  Art Foltz has reiterated/reemphasized the need to avoid visitng that end of the pond because of the traps out there. There will not be any dam breaking work this week-end.

Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing (PHWFF) Program (posted February 5, 2015)
Earlier today the Chapter distributed an email to members explaining the purpose of the Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing Program. At the February 5 Membership meeting Dick Barnett gave a briefing on the elements of the program and the need for volunteers.  The membership voted to encourage new members to volunteer for this program and for hours worked to be used towards the 20 hour service requirement.  There is an immediate need for volunteers to work several shifts at the upcoming Bass Pro Spring Classic event on February 14 and 15 at the Bass Pro Shop in Ashland (Richmond) VA. If you are interested click here to download a copy of the sign-up form to help you identify where you would like to serve. Contact Dick Barnett at cell/text 703-795-4290 703-795-4290 or email to let him know your desire to sign up.

A Limited Number of Members Have an Incorrect Gate Code for 2015 (posted February 22, 2015)  As many as 80 members were issued an incorrect gate code. These incorrect gate codes were likely issued several weeks either before or after mid November so it affects some members that received cards around that time.  All members need to check their 2015 membership cards to determine if they have the correct 2015 gate code.  As the code is secure you need to go to the Member Login page (click on link to the left) and log in this week to learn how to fix this glitch. Scroll all the way down to the bottom where Restricted Communications are posted. To login to Member Login you will need to use the 2014 gate code until Saturday, February 21.  After Saturday the access password will be changed to the 2015 gate code and some might lose access.  We are sorry for the inconvenience.  If you happen to lose access write an email to and explain your situation.
Donations Sought (Posted January 31, 2015)
The Honey Processing Facility (HPF) construction project is progressing as quickly as the cold weather will allow. The Pavilion on the west side of the pond has been framed and sheathed. The Chapter is now seeking the donation of insulation for the walls (R-11/R-13) and ceiling (R-30) to moderate the interior temperatures. Many people have fiberglas batts left over from a project and sometimes leave it on the work bench or in the corner of the garage awaiting the next project. If so, consider donating it to the Chapter and we will install it inside the new facility and put it to immediate good use. Donations may be left on the porch of the Chapterhouse or in the open machinery shed at the Range 1 end of the parking lot. Make sure you place it where it will not get wet or get blown around by the wind. Any questions, contact either Terry Fellinger or Darrell Schultz (see link to  "Contact Us" web page at top for phone and email  address). Thank you.
Attention Geocachers (Updated JFebruary 7, 2015)
The Chapter would like to hold a geocache search during the Family Picnic on May 31st. However, we need help in planning and setting it up! A seasoned Geocacher is sought to help out with this planned event.; please contact Pat Aubert at

Anyone Walking Dogs Near the Pond or "Playing" Near the Beaver Dams - Be Advised of a Hazard (updated: February 1, 2015)
Some industrious rodents are still creating some serious problems out at Walton Pond by cutting down trees, building dams and flooding the headwater areas of the flow into the Pond. Some volunteers have already damaged some portion of the dams but dams will be more thoroughly removed/destroyed so the water flows freely again as weather and temperatures permit. That is but a temporary solution as beavers are persistent. For a more permanent solution the Chapter has arranged for a trapper to place some traps that will eliminate the beavers. The mechanisms (traps) can be lethal to any animal that happens to step into them. The traps will be in the water but dogs having an affinity for water might unexpectedly bound into the places where the traps might be set. Either do not bring your dogs until the "all clear" is given or make sure your dog is restrained securely by leash (as required by the rules) if you choose to walk your animals near the pond on or after this date. This hazard should not be of long duration (could be several weeks). Several beavers have been removed so far but there are more.  As for the humans, there is to be no walking on any ice that might be forming on the pond for the same reason and it is also not allowed under any conditions besides. Another notice will be provided when the traps have been removed. View pictures of the types of damage done by the beavers at the south east shore and the stream inlet of Walton Pond.

Happy New Year 2015! --  Chapter Calendar (posted: December 31, 2014)  Sweep out the old and welcome the new. You can find the 2015 calendar of Chapter events under a menu item called "Chapter Calendar" on the left.  When you click on this menu tab the calendar will open in a separate window. The calendar is the authoritative source for the Chapter's scheduled events and it has been updated with all known events for 2015.  New events for 2015 are being added as they are identified. Check it periodically as the events can change without notice.

Winter Usage of the Dam (updated January 11, 2015)
It is cold and the potential for snow will be increasing. When it snows, sledding on the inclined face of the dam at Walton pond is prohibited as it will damage the grass structure that is there to prevent erosion.  The caution tape that remains around the dam area will continue to serve as a reminder to avoid undue walking on the dam.  Good news:  members and their families are again allowed access to the fishing pier on foot by walking only on the flat surface at the top of the dam.  If the top of the dam seems muddy please avoid creating foot prints.  But, unauthorized motorized vehicles of any kind are strictly forbidden anywhere on the dam.

Volunteer Sought for Vacant Position (Help Wanted) (updated February 1, 2015)

Conservation Director: (Still vacant) The Chapter continues seeking a replacement member for the current Director, Mike Sullivan, who is stepping down at the end of the month after 5 years of service.  The Director serves as the lead person for a number of conservation oriented activities including roadside trash collection 4 times a year under the Adopt-A-Highway Program, tree planting in various locations in the area, and securing a slate of speakers for addressing the group at several  monthly membership Meetings on topics aligned with resource conservation.  Mike says he will continue to help with all of these activities as a member and will assure the new person is given a thourough orientation when they take over the various tasks. Interested members should contact our President, Greg Raines for further information. Greg can be reached via e-mail at, by phone 540-287-2628, or in person.

REMINDER! Range Hours of Operation (Posted January 5, 2015)
Members continue to use the ranges outside the authorized hours for operation in violation of the Range rules. On September 15, 2014, the new hours of operation for the firearms ranges were changed: Daylight Saving Time (DST) 8:00 AM until 7:00 PM, Monday thru Saturday. Eastern Standard Time (EST): 8:00 AM until 4:00 PM, Monday thru Saturday.  Workday Saturday hours will be determined on a workday basis and ranges will open only after work tasks are complete. Sunday hours will be: 12:00 PM (noon) until 7:00 PM, (DST); and Sunday hours during EST are 12:00 PM (noon) until 4:00 PM.  These hours are posted on the metal signs at each range; take a moment the next time you visit to refresh your understanding of all the range rules to include operating hours and the firearm and cartridge caliber combinations allowed on each range.
Violations will be subject to disciplinary action.

The Pistol, Rifle, and Shotgun Range Rules have been updated to reflect these new hours.

Bylaws and Operational Policies are Now Available for Reading  (Posted: December 2, 2014) The Chapter Bylaws and Operational Procedures were approved at the Novemeber Membership Meeting by a "show of hands" vote of the membership. The documents can now be read on the Member Login page (click on Member Login at the left side of this page to access the page and the Chapter Documents).  These documents apply to all members immediately. Those members that have not yet paid their dues should pay close attention to the penalties associated with delinquent payment as these have changed dramatically.  In addition, if anyone desires to sponsor a new member please read the new process for member induction as there is a new step which requires the prospective member to meet with the Membership Committee before presenting themselves for Chapter approval. This process will start in January 2015.

Membership Renewals for 2015 Were Sent to Members Months Ago and Were Due at the End of December (Updated January 2, 2015)

Dues Statements for 2015 were mailed to all members several months ago. Those that have not yet renewed should take note of the contents carefully for several reasons:

First, starting immediately there is a shorter grace period for getting your 2015 dues paid.  Dues payments were due by the end of December. After December 31 a $20 late payment fee was added to the dues total. If that increased dues plus fee is not paid in full by the end of January, on February 1 the member will be expelled automatically and, to be reinstated, will need to pay an initiation fee of $300.  See the Membership web page (click on Membership tab in the header located at the top of this page) for details that are derived directly from the newly approved Chapter Bylaws and Operational Policies.

Also, if you and your spouse intend to shoot at the ranges complete the slip of paper "Fredericksburg-Rappahannock Chapter IWLA 2015 Shooter's Fee" by entering your name(s) and,  If you are between the age of 18 and 65 please add $10 each to the amount you are assessed for membership based on membership type. Separate the pink "Membership Statement for Year Ending 12/31/2015" and affix the address label on an envelope.  Enclose the pink card, the completed slip of paper registering as a shooter, and a check payable to either "IWLA" or "Fred-Rapp IWLA" for the total of your membership and any applicable shooter's fee(s) inside the envelope.  Place a stamp on the envelope and return all by December 31, 2014. Retain the blue copy of the statement for your records.

Finally, some members have apparently sent their renewals to the National organization in Gaithersburg, MD. This delays your renewal as National waits until they have received a handful of renewals sent to them in error, then put them into an envelope and mail them back to our local Membership Director. Please place the peel off label on the pink (left) half of your renewal card on your envelope to send the renewal to Larry Stanford. Using the peel off label makes sure the envelope is sent to the proper address. and your membership is processed sooner.

Chapter Email Subscription Form Now Available (updated November 30, 2014)
Several times a month the Chapter distributes an email (called Reminders) to members on the distribution list. The last one  addressed the Wreath Making Party to be held on Sunday, December 7. If you did not receive that email you might not be included on the distribution list or might have been removed in error (it happens). If you want to be included, go to the Member Login area (click on menu item "Member Login" located on the left side of this page) and follow instructions on the new subscription enrollment form to automatically enroll in future distributions. If you have any difficulty send an email to to request assistance. This is a great way to add a second member of the family membership (a significant other) to the distribution of the Reminders.
The 2015 Coupon Book is Still Available (updated: January 17, 2015)
We still have copies of the 2015 ATTRACTIONS coupon book and will be selling these again as part of our Chapter fund raising efforts. Get your book at our next Chapter Membership Meeting and other Chapter Events... just $25.00.  This book, known officially as the "ATTRACTIONS - Dining and Value Guide for Fredericksburg" contains many coupons offering "Buy One Get One" opportunities. The use of these coupons will recoup the cost of this book with only 2-3 uses at popular local restaurants, events and attractions.  Even better, if you buy a book now the coupons are available for use immediately and will not expire until the end of December 2015! There are no more when these are sold out! To get yours, contact either Greg Raines, (540) 287-2628 or email: or Jimmy Miles,  (540) 220-0706. Just ask either of us when you see us and we will get one for YOU! Consider buying extras as it is not too soon to think about giving these as Holiday gifts.
Qualified Beekeepers Still Wanted (updated: August 10, 2014)
Click on Conservation tab for more information if you can help.