Date: Wednesday, June 10, 2009
Pheasants Forever Mentored Youth Hunt
And so the tradition continues. The 8th Annual Pheasant Forever Mentored Youth Hunt is scheduled for October 10, 2009 on the new State Game Lands 44, the Kocjancic Tract, in Fox Township. This event is sponsored by Pheasants Forever Chapter 630, with assistance from the Fox Township Sportsmen Club.
Leon Blashock, event organizer, has been involved with the youth hunt since the very beginning. His enthusiasm for hunting upland birds is infectious and through his friendships with other bird dog enthusiasts, he has been able to recruit approximately 25 of the best bird dogs and handlers to mentor a youth on their individual hunt. “This event provides seasoned sportsmen and sportswomen the opportunity to share their passion for the outdoors with our youth. Our cadre of volunteers does an outstanding job in this regard. The goal each and every year is to use this event to teach a respect for the outdoors, showcase good dog work, make new friends and experience the fun of a healthy outdoor activity with family”, Blashock says.
Signs will be posted along the highway denoting the area authorized for the hunt. The hunt area is located west of State Route 219 between Toby Road and Brandy Camp Roads in Fox Township. The hunt area is approximately one thousand acres in size, so 35-40 youth will have ample room to spread out for a safe pheasant hunting experience. The day will begin at 7AM with formal registration, and end at approximately 4PM. Every hour, 4-5 teams of 4 (dog handler, dog, youth hunter, and adult mentor), will head to the field for a two hour guided hunt. Prior to each team departing for the field, a final safety briefing will be held at the registration area. There will be an added field stocked with chukers, in the event a youth does not have the opportunity to harvest a pheasant. Lunch is provided free of charge.
Every youth must attend the safety day on October 4, 2009 at the Fox Township Sportsmen complex from 1-4PM. This will be a mandatory 3 hour safety seminar that will be focused on gun and dog safety and hunter ethics. A review of safe hunting practices will be followed by demonstrations of dogs pointing and flushing birds at work, and trap shooting. At the trap area, hunters will demonstrate their abilities to safely handle the firearm they will use on the hunt. Twelve and twenty gauge shells will be provided for the trap shooting. This seminar has been held on previous year’s events, and was well received by the youth and adults.
Applications are now available for this years Mentored Youth Hunt. Deadline for completed application is September 15, 2009 and space is limited to 35 youth - first come, first served! Pick up an application at Loves Canoe in Ridgway, and Smith's Sports Store and Ammo and Arms in St. Marys. Any questions can be answered by calling or e-mailing event coordinator Leon Blashock at email@example.com 814-885-8950.