State track, golf
THUMBS UP: There were no state champions from southwest Minnesota, but those who represented the area at this year's state golf tournament should be recognized, as they've done their schools and communities proud. In Class A, the always-tough Lincoln HI girls team brought home second-place hardware, and for the boys, Dawson-Boyd came away with a third-place trophy, while the Murray County Central boys finished in fourth. The Marshall boys, after struggling the first day of the tournament, bounced back Wednesday and finished fifth. Congratulations to all the golfers, and to the state track and field participants from around the area.
Firearms training in state parks
THUMBS DOWN: While we don't doubt the DNR will take every precaution, every step necessary to ensure safety, we're not thrilled about its plan to hold firearms safety training in state parks. The DNR will test the idea later this summer, letting students shoot .22-caliber rifles at the Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area near Carver and the Carlos Avery Wildlife Management Area near Forest Lake. The DNR says park users "shouldn't even know we are there." Training could eventually be offered at Fort Snelling State Park, William O'Brien State Park near Stillwater and other large state parks. Apparently, enrollment in firearms safety programs has ballooned, but that doesn't mean we should open up state parks to firearms training. Hunter education programs are important, and we strongly advocate for firearms safety programs, but they should take place at controlled firing ranges, not state parks.