Date: Friday, September 16, 2011
There wasn't a dry eye in the Queenstown Lodge. Jasmine Carlson had just presented Emily Schneider (daughter of Tim and Mary Jo Schneider of St. Marys, PA.)and Arianna Evans with their scrapbooks that summed up the amazing weekend planned and executed for them by North Central PA Pheasants Forever. Jazz worked on the project until 2 AM to be sure the memory books would be perfect.
Local Chapter 630 of Pheasants Forever has been planning for 2 years to take challenged and terminally ill children on hunting and outdoor adventures. They are short of their endowment goal but thought they had enough to pull off the first event. There is no doubt it was a huge success!
A dozen Pheasants Forever members had planned a variety of events including pheasant and chukkar hunting, geocaching, fishing, ATV rides, canoeing, 22 and trap shooting. There was food everywhere including custom cupcakes and a cake with the Pheasants Forever logo. The Saturday night pig roast included the Evan's and Schneider's extended family.
Cliff Forrest of Rosebud Mining donated the use of the Queenstown Lodge near East Brady, PA for the weekend of September 16-18, 2011. Dane Potts was our host. There was plenty of room for the 10 family members and dozen volunteers to spend the entire weekend. Emily and Arianna where both a little shy during the Friday evening cook out. They were also cautious during the evening gun safety program on the trap range. The weather was chilly so the enormous fireplace was warm and inviting.
By Saturday morning, excitement filled the air as everyone prepared for bird hunting, canoeing and fishing. The dogs and their handlers were the stars of the day. The young lady showed off their fishing skills at a local pond, each catching 20+ bass, perch, sunfish and even a catfish. As the day warmed up, a few family members tried kayaking for their very first time, even a few of the grandma's. The evening pig roast banquet was a welcome sight.
Sunday started out slower as the long days and short night were catching up to everyone. A few more birds were placed in the fields. Geocaching was introduced with prizes along the way. Balloons popped one after another at the 22 range.
'It was a first class event, ' stated Dick Bodenhorn, PF chapter president. 'Jane Bryndel, Leon Blashock and Aaron Bleggi have been in on the project since the very beginning. We could not have pulled it off without Tim Rowan's contacts. Dan and Amy Quagliani did an outstanding job with the food. Don and Michelle Carlson along with their daughter, Jasmine, were helpful every step of the way. John Bilodeau is a great safety instructor. We appreciate how much time Herb Bullers and Pat Shaffer spent over the weekend taking photos and video. We hope to draw attention to our program and hopefully increase the endowment funds.'
If you are interested in donating for future hunting adventures for challenged and terminally ill kids, please send your donation to:
Pheasants Forever Youth Outdoor, c/o Elk County Community Foundation
111 Erie Avenue
St. Marys, PA 15857