The Texas Handgun Association (TxHGA) Board of Directors is proud to announce plans for the 23rd annual conference, March 27-29, 2020 at the YO Ranch Hotel and Conference Center, Kerrville, Texas.
Our keynote speaker for the upcoming conference will be Edmundo Mireles, Jr., author of FBI Miami Firefight: Five Minutes that Changed the Bureau. The topic for his keynote address is “Overcoming Adversity and Surviving/Thriving.” It is his story of survival and the fight to save the lives of his brother agents on that fateful day in 1986. In five minutes, two bank robbers and two FBI agents were dead; five other agents were wounded, three critically. This incident would change FBI and law enforcement training, tactics and weaponry forever. Mr. Mireles will also be teaching a class on Sunday morning titled Case Study of the FBI Miami Shootout.
The range day activities are being handled by special guest range instructors Aaron Marshall and Jamie LaBarbera of Guncraft Training Academy. They will also be teaching two classes: Winning the Rights Fight: Securing our 2nd Amendment Rights and Training That Wins: Being Truly Prepared for Armed Self-Defense. Additionally, eight other excellent training classes will be offered by highly qualified instructors covering various less lethal defense topics such as Empty Hands Tactics, OC Spray & Conducted Electrical Weapons, and ASP Baton; gunshot wound training; preparing for an emergency; how to interact with law enforcement; and presenting & re-holstering a gun safely.
In addition to the training and range day activities, there will be other activities: President reception, Saturday luncheon & banquet, and free-play bingo. Below is detailed information regarding the conference registration process, schedule, hotel accommodations, raffles, training programs, instructor bios, etc.
We look forward to seeing you there!
TxHGA is continuing its effort to offer excellent education opportunities to LTC licensees, LTC instructors, law enforcement personnel and concerned citizens during the Twenty-Third Annual Conference. These programs are designed to improve the knowledge and skills of all gun owners. The goal is to set a standard of excellence that may become the normal requirement within the LTC community. Several courses will be offered.
- *Empty Hands Tactics, by Erwin Ballarta, CEO of Armatek USA Security Group Inc.
- First Aid Gun Shot Wounds, by U.S. & Texas Law Shield
- Testing Gunshot Wound Training, by Austin Davis owner of Virtual Tactical Academy
- Training That Wins: Being Truly Prepared for Armed Self-Defense, by Aaron Marshal & Jamie Labarbera, Guncraft Training Academy
- *Civilian Less Lethal Options: OC Spray & Conducted Electrical Weapons, by David Kidder
- *Armed Citizen Interacting with Law Enforcement, by Jamie Kidder
- *ASP Baton Tactics and Utilization, by Norman Bennett
- Emergency Preparedness: Are you doing enough?, by Steve Lehman
- Training That Wins: Being Truly Prepared for Armed Self-Defense, by Aaron Marshal of Guncraft Training Academy
- Case Study of the FBI Miami Shootout, by Edmundo Mireles, Jr., author of FBI Miami Firefight: Five Minutes that Changed the Bureau
- Present a Pistol and Re-holster Training, by First Sergeant Richard A. Buchfink, Jr., USA, Retired., owner of Bronze Star Shooting.
Courses marked with an asterisk (*) are eligible for Texas Commission on Law Enforcement (TCOLE) continuing education credit for licensed police officers.
Click HERE for full detailed conference schedule.
Click HERE for the detailed class descriptions and instructor bios.
Speakers & Special Guest Range Instructors
The Saturday luncheon speakers will be a representative from the Texas Department of Public Safety and P.J. Hermosa, National Director of Texas Law Shield.
P.J. Hermosa brought his innovative and customer-focused thinking to the U.S. & Texas LawShield Program during the early stages of development. His experience in sales management, along with his entrepreneurial spirit, helped propel him from a part-time Sales Representative to where he is today. In his capacity as CEO, P.J. works tirelessly to develop programs that add value to the lives and experiences of the U.S. & Texas LawShield member community. He understands that businesses are run by and for people first and foremost, and he focuses on building a company that fulfills the customers’ expectations. He continuously looks for ways to improve the company and the member experience, and finds great accomplishment in building a community around the people who matter. Born and raised in San Antonio, TX, P.J. resides in Houston, where he is a proud father and avid supporter of the Second Amendment.
Our keynote speaker is Edmundo Mireles, Jr. who is a former special agent of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and is known for his part in the 1986 FBI Miami shootout. In five minutes two bank robbers and two FBI agents were dead, five other agents were wounded, three critically. This incident would change the FBI and law enforcement in general. He has published his account of what happened on April 11, 1986 in his book “FBI Miami Firefight, Five Minutes that Changed the Bureau” that can be found at www.edmireles.com or on Amazon. For the last 30 years, Mr. Mireles has been a guest lecturer and instructor at police academies and military centers across the US and Canada. As a firearms instructor and survivor of violent encounters, Mr. Mireles is a subject matter expert (SME) in Deadly Force confrontations, deadly force policy, wound ballistics, street survival, the physiological and psychological responses to “fight or flight” incidents and the physiological and psychological responses to gunshot recovery. To learn more about the 1986 FBI Miami Gunfight, check out this YouTube video by clicking HERE.
Special Guest Range Instructors
The special guest range instructors are Aaron Marshal and Jamie LaBarbera from Guncraft Training Academy, located in New Braunfels, Texas.
Aaron Marshall is a two-time combat veteran, having deployed to both Iraq and Afghanistan, and is currently a major in the US Army Reserve. He has been a shooter for almost twenty years and a firearms instructor for over fifteen years, in both military and civilian settings. He holds instructor certifications from Glock, Sig Sauer, and the NRA Law Enforcement division, and is a US Army primary marksmanship instructor for both pistol and rifle. He worked for three years as a range master at Front Sight, the largest private firearms school in the county, and has personally trained over 6000 students. He sits on the board of directors for the Texas Handgun Association. He is a master trainer for Guncraft Training Academy in New Braunfels, Texas, where he manages and instructs in training programs on defensive handgun, rifle, and shotgun.
Jamie LaBarbera is a former police officer for the Fremont and Oakland police departments. He was also a senior training specialist for the California Motorcycle Training Program, and is a licensed private investigator. He is a POST-certified and NRA Law Enforcement certified firearms instructor. He is the Training Coordinator for Guncraft Training Academy.
The conference hotel is the YO Ranch Hotel & Conference Center, 2033 Sidney Baker, Kerrville, Texas 78028. You can register here or contact the hotel at (877) 967-3767. Please make sure you tell them you are with TxHGA. The special rate for a single or double, which is valid through noon, March 15, 2020, is $94.00 per night plus taxes for two queen beds or one king bed.
The easiest way to register for the conference is online. You can also register by Mail-In Form. For those who preregistered, you will receive confirmation of your registration by email prior to the event. At the event, please make sure you check in at the registration table to pickup your conference packet and name tag.
- Total Package per person, includes classes, luncheon, and banquet, $139.00 [*See Note Below.]
- Life Members, including all of the above, $105.00 [*See Note Below.]
- Junior rate, including all of the above, $69.00 [*See Note Below.]
- Range Fun Shoot, Friday, March 27, not included in the above prices, $20.00
- Range Training Session, Saturday, March 28, not included in the above prices, $20.00
- For those individuals who will not be attending all three days of training, but can attend one or more days:
- Friday classes only, $30.00 [*See Note Below.]
- Saturday classes only, $60.00 [*See Note Below.]
- Sunday classes only, $30.00
- Luncheon only, $30.00
- Banquet only, $59.00
- Luncheon and Banquet only, $89.00
[*Note: Does not include either range day activity.]
Note: Photographs will be taken at all events and may be published.
We will raffle off a Charter Arms “Police Undercover”, .38 special, 6 shot, 20 ounces, and Stainless Steel, with a standard grip and 2.2″ barrel. [Download tickets.] This raffle will be drawn at the beginning of the board meeting on Sunday, March 29, 2020. You need not be present to win.
During the conference, the conference attendees will also have the opportunity to participate in additional gun raffles. These raffle drawings will take place at various times during the conference.
Luncheon & Banquet
The Saturday luncheon, 12:15 to 1:30 pm, is a Mexican Buffet with marinated beef or chicken fajitas, beef enchiladas, pork tamales, pico de gallo, shredded cheddar cheese, guacamole, sour cream, Mexican style rice, charro beans, tortillas, chips, salsa, and sopapillas with honey. The speakers will be a representative from the Texas Department of Public Safety and P.J. Hermosa, National Director with Texas Law Shield.
The keynote speaker for the Saturday evening banquet, 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm, is Edmundo Mireles, Jr., author of FBI Miami Firefight: Five Minutes that Changed the Bureau.
The Saturday evening Banquet is the Traditional Hill Country Buffet with three entrée choices: Pork Loin in a mustard cream sauce, Chicken breast with a Madeira sauce, and Roast Beef au jus. The meal will come with oven roasted red potatoes, garden green salad, seasonal vegetables, hot rolls with butter, and apple cobbler with whipped cream.
Range Day Activities
Aaron Marshal & Jamie LaBarbera with Guncraft Training Academy will be holding two range sessions at the Hill Country Shooting Sports Center. On Friday, March 27, will be a Range Fun Shoot and on Saturday, March 28, will be a Range Training Session. Each session will start with a discussion of firearms safety and safe range conduct. Students may attend both sessions; however, each session will be $20.00. Participation in each session will be limited to the first 20 paid attendees.
IMPORTANT: All participants are required to attend a safety briefing. If you fail to arrive to the scheduled safety briefing(s) on time, 2:00 pm on Friday and/or 3:00 pm on Saturday, you will not be able to participate and will forfeit your range fee.
During the Friday Range Fun Shoot, you will be testing your mettle against your fellow TxHGA members! During this time on the range, you’ll test your skills through a series of five challenging shooting events. Every stage will require your very best in speed, accuracy, and consistency of shooting, as well as a little creative thinking. For each event, you’ll receive a score that indicates your overall performance. At the end of the day, the highest score will earn the title of 2020 Conference Top Shot.
During the Saturday Range Training Session, you will focus on developing and improving an essential set of defensive techniques that are vital to prevailing against a deadly attacker. You’ll gain a deeper understanding of these essential skills, whether you’re a brand-new shooter or have been shooting for years. Through a series of demonstrations, dry practice, and shooting exercises, you will deepen your understanding and abilities on:
- The Two Key Elements that will enable you to hit your target, every time
- Using proper trigger control for improved accuracy and speed
- Finding the optimal balance between speed and accuracy
- Consistently presenting your handgun from the holster
- Primary and alternate shot-placement strategies and when to use them
- The one “step” that cuts your chances of getting shot by your adversary in half
The session will conclude with two fun and challenging exercises that will test your speed, accuracy, and consistency. The individual who comes out on top in both of the exercises will be recognized at the banquet.
Equipment required for range day activities:
- Reliable, modern semi-automatic pistol or revolver chambered in 9mm or larger. Semi-autos must have a barrel at least 3” in length. If you have questions about a particular pistol, please contact Guncraft at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Minimum of 100 rounds of ammunition for the Friday Range Fun Shoot and 150 rounds of ammunition for the Saturday Range Training Session. Factory ammunition is preferred but high quality reloaded ammunition is acceptable if you loaded it. Do not bring reloaded ammunition loaded by someone else as there is no way to assure safety and quality. Revolver shooters will need at least two speed loaders and semi-auto shooters will need three magazines.
- A good quality, strong side belt holster on a sturdy belt is required. The holster must remain open and not flatten when the gun is withdrawn. The gun’s trigger guard must be completely covered when in the holster. A Kydex or reinforced leather holster is recommended. No Serpa, cross-draw, shoulder holsters, or appendix carry holsters.
- Speed loader or magazine pouches are recommended to hold spare ammunition.
- Suitable outdoor clothing and comfortable shoes as well as a brimmed cap.
- Hearing protection. Electronic hearing muffs or plugs are highly recommended.
- Eye protection with side protection.
- Water will be available, but bring your Gatorade or other drink if you like.
Parts of the road at the range are rough and could pose a problem for low clearance vehicles. Please plan accordingly.
Additionally, on Saturday afternoon (prior to going to the range), Aaron & Jamie will be presenting a 45 minute class on Training That Wins: Being Truly Prepared for Armed Self-Defense. You’ll gain valuable insight into the following self-defense related topics:
- The cost of poorly-trained gun owners (and why there are more of them than you think)
- The Five Levels of Competence, and how to recognize which applies to you
- The four types of defensive firearm skills, and which ones you can’t afford to neglect
- Why understanding the difference between training and practice helps you do both better
- How some practice can actually HURT your ability to defend yourself
- Evaluating whether the techniques you’re using are best for self-defense
- The two most common training mistakes made by both students and instructors
Note: This class is a pre-requisite for the Saturday Range Training Session, but is open to all participants.
The President will be hosting a hospitality/welcome gathering Friday from 7:00 PM to 8:00 PM. This will be a great opportunity to meet other conference attendees and check out the vendors. Following the President’s Reception, we will be playing bingo for prizes. There is no cost to participate. Just come and enjoy the fun!
The Association’s Regular Annual Meeting and Board of Directors Elections will be held on Saturday, March 28, 2020 at 11:15 AM at the YO Ranch Hotel & Conference Center, 2033 Sidney Baker, Kerrville, Texas 78028. The meeting is open to all Association members and guests at no charge.
All members are encouraged to attend.
- Is the YO Ranch Hotel Pet Friendly?
Yes. According to the hotel spokesperson, “It is a $10 charge for the stay if you’re staying up to 2 nights. 3 or more nights it is a $25 charge. If you leave your pet in the room by itself and still want housekeeping to come in the room to clean, the pet has to be in a crate. Otherwise, I would advise to put the Do Not Disturb sign on the door and maybe even tell Front Desk.”
- Does the YO Ranch Hotel have RV spaces?
No, they do not have RV accommodations. Since the YO Ranch Hotel does not have sites on their hotel property, they did refer us to the Guadalupe River RV Park. To contact the Guadalupe River RV Park, you can call (800) 582-1916 or go to their website. This RV Park is about seven miles from the YO Ranch Hotel.
- Will child care be made available?
The association is not set up at this time to offer child care; however, we do offer for older children a junior rate (16 or under) of $59.00 to attend all of the functions, except for the range day activities. For younger children, these sites may assist parents in finding child care services in the Kerrville area: