Our local chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation, the Lakes Shore Longbeards, once again had nice weather and another nice crowd of youths attend its annual JAKES Day event held at the Westfield Fish & Game Club on Ogden Road in Westfield. There were a number of familiar smiling faces at this year's event as well as some new-comers, including the learning stations.
Vincent P. Martonis from the Hanover History Center had a number of neat artifacts on display and captivated his audience with a primitive spear-like projectile and throwing rod called an atl-atl. Martonis explained that the device in some shape or form has been around for thousands of years and was found on every continent except Antarctica. The record for launching the projectile is about 1,000 feet. Cool!
Moving right along, the group visited Steve Purol with a trapper's display of various traps, furs, and literature on a pastime Steve and many other trappers hold dearly.
OBSERVER?Photos by Gene Pauszek
Above left: Vince Martonis shows his group the “atl-atl” and how to use it. Above right: Jill Hejza and Chuck Stansbury assist Gabriela and Gary Dudek III with archery.
L.S. Longbeards President Scott Dibble had a display of various deer antler sheds, European-style deer mounts and turkey decoys displaying calls and various techniques for coaxing turkeys and youngsters into view.
Jim Tofil, Ray Pauszek Jr., Bob Turk Sr. and Mark John Sobecki had the kids putting together their very own bird houses, which they got to keep.
Hideaway Archery from 12749 Cottage Rd. South Dayton (532-2360) provided one-on-one archery shooting for the youngsters. They reminded us that archery season stars this year on Oct. 1.
Just before lunch, Joel Cybart from the NYS licensed, dog-tracking association Deer Search, gave a talk and display with his wire-hair dachshund, Bruno. Did you know that Deer Search members pay $25 just to take the exam and $50 for their tracking license - good for five years - and volunteer their time assisting people trying to locate lost big game. That's awesome!
Don Munson and Jim VanDyke did a splendid job manning the hands-on shooting station, giving the youths the option to try their hand at shooting clay birds either with one-on-one assistance with a shotgun geared for youngsters or a BB gun.
Greg Little, Art Estus and Harold Eckles manned the kids' fly-tying station while Tim Abbey, Tom Kessler, Denny Russel and Rob Becker took care of the fishing hole.
There were a good number of committee members again this year, but I can tell you that Bud Szumigala, Justin Neibel, Al Benn and his wife, as well as Bob and Judi Turk, Mr. and Mrs. Scott Dibble and the rest of the gang all looked like they visited the Fountain of Youth while helping out with this year's event.
The Longbeards and the kids thank all the sponsors who helped make this year's event possible. Hope to see you next year!
The Westfield Fish & Game Club will host a two-day Hunter Safety Training Course on Monday, Aug. 6 from 7-10 p.m., returning on Saturday, Aug. 11 from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. This is a mandatory two-day class for certification and students must be at least 12 years old. For more information call 326-3218.
The Northern Chautauqua Conservation Club will be holding its annual three-day walleye tournament on Aug. 3, 4 and 5. The 100-team field is full with a waiting list, but the public is invited to watch the weigh-in and awards as well and take part in the refreshments and activities. More on this event later.
The "Con Club" will also conduct a hunter safety training course on Aug. 22 and 23 from 5-10 p.m. both evenings. You must pre-register at the club on Aug. 2 from 6-8 p.m. and the class size is limited to 40 students.
The Bear Lake Rod & Gun Club will host archery class on Aug. 4 from 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. St
udents must pre-register at Cassadaga Shurfine between July 20 and July 31.
The "Con Club" will host an archery course on Sept. 11 from 9:30 a.m.-6 p.m. Students must pre-register on Sept. 5 from 6-8 p.m. Class is limited to 40 students.
There will be a yellow perch fishing tournament at the North East Marina on Saturday, July 28. For details, go to www.nechamber.org or call (814) 725-4262.
This is HUGE: On Wednesday, Aug. 8 at Chautauqua Suites, 215 West Lake Road, Mayville, NY, the No. 1 Whitetail event will be taking place. Country Western Star Ricky Lee, T.V. celebrities Pat and Nicole from their show "DRIVEN", and more will be on hand for celebrity signings, giveaways, raffles, live auctions, great Whitetail hunts and Xtreme raffles. Think of it like a Ducks Unlimited dinner for deer. Doors open at 5 p.m. and dinner is at 7:15 p.m. Tickets are $25 per person. Get tickets by calling Scott Dibble at 595-3897or Rich Lazarczyk at 595-3917.
Gene Pauszek is an OBSERVER outdoors columnist. Send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.