Bow season opens on Oct. 1 this year and everyone has an opinion on this action.
Too early. Too much foliage. Too warm. You get my drift.
The bow hunters pushed for this move, wanting a uniform date with which to plan their vacations, etc. They got it. Those bow hunters who are getting up in age and suffering from a lot of infirmities that prevent pulling back on conventional archery equipment or holding a bow at full draw for any length of time are still hoping to get a more liberal ruling on the crossbow bill. There is room for it. Keep after your legislators if you want it to happen sooner rather than later.
OBSERVER Photos by Gene Pauszek
Over 300 people attended the WPBC supper on Friday, which was headlined by Steve Chapman and another memorable wild game dinner sponsored, and prepared, by the Westportland Baptist Church.
Singer, song writer, speaker, deer hunter, entertainer and church-goer Steve Chapman was a big hit with the congregation that gathered Friday evening at the Westportland Baptist Church annual sportsmans wild game dinner. Chapman drew possibly the largest crowd this annual event has ever seen. After a sumptuous dinner prepared by the church ladies, Chapman introduced himself as a deer hunter, noting that now is Golden Rod Time, which means it is also bow-and-arrow time.
The audience viewed a short video clip of flora and fauna to one of Chapman's vocalizations accompanied by his guitar playing. Moving right along, Steve then had the whole audience involved with the turkey frying pan song accompanied by two audience members using a box call and a gobbler shaker call. It was great.
Chapman is a storyteller who divulged that his grandfather lost an arm to a gunshot wound, so Chapman's father was not in favor of his son going hunting. An older gentleman named Kenneth Bledsoe finally got the boy to accompany him and changed his life forever. Chapman hails from Tennessee and sings about life experiences that have a foundation in family, the Creator and nature.
He recalled taking his son, who usually prefers golfing, out to a promising area. After placing his son in a stand, he did a little one-man deer drive and heard the report of a rifle again and again and again. His emotions went like this: 'Oh my! Oh yeah! Oh no! Oh well!'
Real life commentary like that appeals to everyone. Chapman followed up the story with a song, where the father after years of neglect, turns to tell his son 'I love you, son' during a shared deer hunt. That almost had members shed a tear. Yeah it was that good of a song.
Chapman reported that in his younger days he walked a different path, a morally destructive path. But eventually he had a life-changing experience that set him on his present day course. One of his parting comments was that hunters should share their experiences afield with their wives. It could have a positive impact on both your lives.
One more noteworthy event was a video clip Chapman showed from Scent-A-Way. An archer is in the woods obviously asleep as a mammoth elk bugles and slowly walks up on the unsuspecting hunter. It literally nudges his hat before the hunter wakes up, arms flailing about, as the elk departs at full speed for parts unknown. The video was reportedly home video footage.
The dinner was super (thank you ladies of the WPBC), Chapman was captivating, talented and charming , and I believe the 300-plus in attendance will agree that we all had a great time. Thank you once again Westportland Baptist Church.
With deer season now upon us, if you take a deer or bear, etc., be it a trophy, first one, large one or only one and would like to have your picture in the OBSERVER, I urge you to contact me at 366-1772 or 467-2079. I will take your photo and record all necessary information. If you chose to take your own photo, be respectful of the animal you have harvested. Don't display the cavity and wash your hands and/or change your clothes. Good luck and hunt safe!
Ken Hollander and Willie Fedrick will resume the free fly tying clinics on Monday evenings at the Northern Chautauqua Conservation Club starting at 6 p.m. NOT 7 p.m.. All equipment, vises and materials are provided FREE. You are invited.
The Westfield Fish & Game Club will host turkey shoots at its club located on Ogden Road on Sunday, Oct. 28 and Nov. 4. The events will start at noon and last until they're finished. These events will be held rain or shine. The public is welcome. All legal centerfire firearms are permitted. Ammunition will be provided for birdshot and deer slugs only. There will be 22 caliber shoots on the indoor range. Bring your own ammo.
If your club is holding a similar event contact the OBSERVER at 366-3000 ext. 5 after 5 p.m.
The Northern Chautauqua Conservation Club will resume its annual Hunters Helping the Hungry program starting this Tuesday. Con Club members are urged to bring a non-perishable food item with them to the club on Tuesdays. A monetary donation is also a suitable choice. All donations will be distributed to the needy in the community through the efforts of the Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Youth Organization during the Christmas season. Please help! In the spirit of competition, donation boxes will be split up into several categories to see which group of members are the most generous. All proceeds will go to charity.
The Bear Lake Rod & Gun Club has scheduled a two-day trapping course on Oct. 18 & 19 from 6-10 p.m. You must pre-register by phone by calling Roger Witt at 595-3418.
There is a two-day trapping course at the Westfield Fish & Game Club on Oct. 5 from 6-10 p.m. returning on Oct. 6 from 8:30 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. Register at the first class.
Fly tying classes have resumed on Monday evenings from 6-8 p.m., at the Sinclairville Free Library. Classes will continue until May. Called "Country Kids on the Fly", the group allows anyone aged 8-100 to learn how to tie their own fishing flies. All tools and materials are provided free. Adults are welcome and encouraged to tie flies also, so fly fishing can become a family hobby. Parents must accompany their kids to the first class as important papers will need to be filled out. For more information, call 962-3635 or 485-3919 or log on www.countrykidsonthefly.blogspot.com.
Gene Pauszek is an OBSERVER outdoors columnist. Send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Gowanda Chamber of Commerce will be hosting its annual Fall Fishing Tournament on Saturday, Oct. 20, in Cattaraugus Creek. Sign-in gets under way at 5 a.m. at the Gowanda Moose Club, located on Aldrich Street. The tournament begins at sunrise and is a catch-and-release event following DEC rules and regulations, with tournament personnel on site to measure and weigh-in the catch. There will be awards, door prizes and food for the participants at the Moose Club after 3:30 p.m. For more information, log on to www.gowandanychamber.org, or call 532-2834 or 532-2288.