As we plan for 2021, we know that we will not be attending sportsman’s shows. We won’t be able to catch up with fellow hunters, trappers and anglers and we won’t be spending money on all of those raffle tickets. And that is hurting hunting organizations – a lot.
Many outfitters and organizations rely on the foot traffic that these shows provide to help get reach more people which helps to draw more donations. Businesses rely on shoppers to buy the cast iron, jackets, wooden carvings, jerky and more but we will not there to make those purchases next year.
And while everyone is still feeling the pinch of the pandemic and a changing world, we need to make sure that these organizations have what they need to continue with their mission because it is so important to the hunting and outdoor world.
Some of the organizations that could use your support:
I would be remiss if I didn't start off with my organization. A couple of friends and I started Women of the Maine Outdoors with the hope of helping women and girls achieve their outdoor ambitions without worrying about a cost.
Across the world, there are stories of hunters, nonhunters, conservationists, anti-hunters and everyone else in between who loves the outdoors. Blood Origins in a project started by my friend Robbie Kroger with the intention of proving that we are all fighting for the same thing and that our stories connect us more than we realize. Blood Origins has a goal of getting people to donate 1 cup of coffee a month (think $5-$10 each month) to help support the vital storytelling that they are doing. I encourage you to join me in supporting them!
Since the 2014 referendum, the Maine Wildlife Conservation Council has continued to raise money for the war chest to ensure that when the next threat to hunting/trapping/hunting with dogs comes along, there is money to start a campaign immediately and spread the message of how important scientifically-proven management is.
Maine Trappers Association: Trapping is always on the brink of being threatened and we need more trappers to help educate the public on the importance it plays as a management tool. Supporting the MTA and considering becoming a trapper and/or teaching trapper’s education through Inland Fisheries & Wildlife, will help to ensure the organization stays strong.
Maine Sporting Dog Association: I had two successful bear hunts thanks to guides using dogs. I have written about the awe that comes from watching these dogs work and appreciating them after that bear is on the ground. The MSDA is a critical part of how we manage bears, bobcat, and coyotes and if you have ever bird hunted with dogs, you should be supporting them.
There are so many other organizations that rely on the support of people attending the shows each year. Since we will go another year without gathering and seeing one another, you may want to connect with these organizations on social media, join their memberships and sign up for their newsletters. And, if you are able, please consider making a donation. They will be so grateful.