From the Michigan DNR - Spring is best time to take hunter education classes

Michigan residents considering hunting in 2013 and who need to complete a hunter education course should enroll in a class this spring, when offerings are plentiful. Classes are held year-round, but April, May, August and September are traditionally the months when classes are most available.

"We encourage anyone considering hunting this year who needs to complete a hunter education course to enroll now in a spring course," said Sgt. Jon Wood, hunter education program supervisor for the Department of Natural Resources. "Waiting until the last minute before you go deer hunting this fall can often translate into difficulty finding a class or an instructor available for a field day, if you are planning to take the home-study or online course."

Michigan has three types of hunter education courses - traditional classroom, home-study and online. Anyone born on or after Jan. 1, 1960, is required to complete the course before buying a Michigan hunting license or taking an out-of-state hunting trip. Exceptions are made for youths under the age of 10 who are hunting under a Mentored Youth Hunting license or hunters older than 10 who are hunting with an apprentice hunting license. Hunters can hunt under the apprentice program for two years before they are required to take hunter education.

The traditional classroom course is a minimum of 10 hours and includes both classroom and field work with an instructor. The fee for the class is $10 or less to cover field supplies. The home-study course features a workbook to complete classwork. A field day is required with the home-study course and must be scheduled with an instructor prior to starting the course. Michigan also offers two approved online hunter education courses, www.hunter-ed.com/Michigan and www.huntercourse.com. Students who choose the online course will complete their classwork online, and then have a field/skills day with an instructor and take a written exam. The field day must be scheduled with an instructor prior to starting the online course.

For more information about hunter education and locations of classes, go to www.michigan.gov/huntereducation.

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is committed to the conservation, protection, management, use and enjoyment of the state's natural and cultural resources for current and future generations. For more information, go to www.michigan.gov/dnr.

Real deer scents made for real deer hunters by real deer farmers

The Evercalm Deer Herd bag on display at the SHOT Show in Las Vegas Las Vegas, Nevada - I always find it fascinating to hear the story of invention ... especially while wandering the countless booths during SHOT SHow. What was the inspiration? A wanting need, a life long dream or, in the case of ConQuest Scent Sticks, poor time management.

"One of our guys was out in the fields when the day ended," Karen Roberts began (Karen owns the ConQuest Deer Farm in Michigan with her husband Doug). "Like a lot of our people, he planned to go deer hunting right after work.

"He was covered in sweat, covered in deer food and, well, covered in deer excrement. Because he was running late, he just grabbed his bow and headed for the stand. When he got there, something amazing happened."

More on the inspiration for Conquest Scent Sticks ...

Generous NRA donation will help Michigan youth keep breaking clays

Upper Peninsula Youth Shotgun Sports Organization receives Friends of NRA grant in Michigan

Two weeks ago Friends of NRA made a very generous donation to the Upper Peninsula Youth Shotgun Sports Organization (UPYSSO) to promote and further the clay target shooting sports in Delta County.

The check, totaling almost $4,400, was presented by NRA Field Rep Al Herman during the Eastern Upper Peninsula Friends of NRA's annual banquet in Brimly, Michigan. This money will go a long way to helping the Delta County Crushers, a Scholastic Clay Target Progam (SCTP) shooting team, and is a great example of funds raised at Friends of NRA events going back into the local community.

More on Friends of NRA's donation to Michigan shotgun sports ...

Joe Kain Fairfax, Virginia - Joe Kain was recently welcomed to the NRA as an intern for the Youth Programs Department. He is not that much different than most college sophomores in the fact that he takes classes, studies hard and enjoys leisure time with friends. Although there is one thing that does set him apart from his peers — Kain is part of the Hillsdale College Shotgun Team.

Hillsdale College is located in Hillsdale Michigan and is amongst an elite number of educational facilities that compete in shooting sports at the collegiate level. Many members of the NRA have assisted Hillsdale College develop their program by coordinating meetings with range architects and others who helped them start their shooting programs. The college currently has four trap fields, one skeet field, and a sporting clays course.

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Bonita Fraim at her first Refuse to be a Victim seminar at Hillsdale College in MichiganHillsdale, Michigan - The ladies upstairs in NRA's Refuse To Be A Victim® program are always looking for new people to run their programs and new places to run them. Last week at Hillsdale College, conveniently located in Hillsdale, Michigan, the program was lucky enough to accomplish both in one fell swoop.

"It's all because of Bonita," said Refuse Coordinator Ruthann Sprague. "Bonita was quite a find and has been great addition to our team thank you very much."

Bonita is Bonita Fraim. With 26 attendees to her first ever event as primary instructor. And to make it even satisfying on our part, Bonita is also one of those new Refuse instructors who received their certification through the Refuse To Be A Victim® Online Instructor Training Course.

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