Nothing is better than getting into the outdoors to learn about a new activity or improve upon skills already learned.
Just such an opportunity awaits women 14 years of age and older, Saturday, June 9, when a National Wild Turkey Federation Women in the Outdoors event will be held at the PPL Montour Preserve. This year's event is being held through the combined efforts of the White Deer Jakes, Col-Mont Gobblers and Sun Area Pennsylvania chapters of the NWTF, and an adult participant must attend with participants between the ages of 14-17.
Pre-registration is required for all WITO events, and participants in the Tri-Chapter event must register by Friday, June 1, as a continental breakfast and lunch are included. Participants are able to choose four classes, listing an alternate for each, from the list of 17 outdoors-related activities offered.
This year's list of activities is one of the most varied by any WITO program in Pennsylvania. Participants at the Tri-Chapter event may choose from the following: Archery, camping/backpacking, camp cooking, canoeing/kayaking, emergency preparedness, fishing, fly fishing, fish processing, geocaching, handguns, nature photography, plant ID/edibles, refuse to be a victim, rifle, shotgun, turkey calling and winemaking.
Registration forms are available on the PGC website at www.pgc.state.pa.us
by clicking on the education tab on the homepage and scrolling down to "Special Events and Programs." Clicking on "Women in the Outdoors" will open the "WITO Events Calendar," and the completed forms and registration can be mailed to Missy Letterman, 3200 Crossroads Drive, Lewisburg, Pa. 17837.
Founded in 1973, NWTF-WITO programs have been held since 1998 and the organized events are designed especially for women by providing expert instruction and hands-on education. The events help participants develop outdoors skills and emphasize the importance of wildlife management and the role of hunters in conservation. A partnership between the NWTF and the Pennsylvania Game Commission has proved beneficial to both organizations in helping to expand the program and continue their similar goals of wanting to reach out to women to provide more opportunities to enjoy the outdoors lifestyle.
A new or renewal NWTF membership is included in the registration fee for a WITO event, and the organization's "Turkey Country" magazine has special features for women. In addition, NWTF's "Turkey Call" television program on the Pursuit Channel has segments by Brenda Valentine, who also appears on the "Real Hunting" program sponsored by Bass Pro Shops.
"Our Women in the Outdoors program is about encouraging women to try new outdoor activities in a safe environment that makes them feel at ease," Valentine said. "These events are also an opportunity for women of all walks of life - singles, moms, daughters, young and old - to spend a day outdoors, away from home, having fun and making new friends.
"Combination sponsorships with the Game Commission and local chapters allow the NWTF to offer these programs at a low cost to participants. Through the Women in the Outdoors program, the NWTF is able to reach an entirely new audience.
"That audience has the potential to benefit conservation efforts. It's an opportunity for women to find great satisfaction and enjoyment in the outdoors."
For information about the Tri-Chapter WITO event, contact Missy Letterman at (570) 568-0839 or [email protected]
; for information about the WITO program, access the website at www.womenintheoutdoors.org;
for information about the National Wild Turkey Federation, access the website at www.nwtf.org
or call (800) THE-NWTF.