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Inaugural Youth Deer Hunt a Success

Nine youth hunters participated in the Federation's first-ever Youth Deer Hunt

Nine youth hunters participated in the Federation’s first-ever Youth Deer Hunt. Click here for additional photos from the weekend.

During three damp, cool December days, the Tennessee Wildlife Federation (TWF) hosted its Youth Hunting and Fishing program’s inaugural Hunt Master Youth Deer Hunt. However, the weather could not dampen the enthusiasm of the participants.

Nine Tennessee youth arrived at the West Tennessee farms of Dr. Jack Gayden and Dr. David Sloas on Friday, December 2 for a full weekend of primitive camping, cooking, bonding with family, making new friends, and deer hunting.

The youth are participants in the Federation’s Scholastic Clay Target Program and have completed Hunter’s Safety training. To hunt, they were also required to obtain a hunting license and a marksmanship certification showing 100 percent accuracy at 100 yards.

Of the nine who attended, six had never hunted deer before and two had never hunted at all. In addition to deer hunting, the kids – aged 10 to 15 – learned other valuable skills like primitive camping, blood trail tracking, deer aging, and the concept of “field to table.” By the end of the weekend, eight deer were harvested. A portion of the harvested deer were donated to the Hunters for the Hungry program.

The Hunt Master program is an initiative of TWF’s Youth Hunting and Fishing Program to engage volunteers in an effort to maximize hunting and fishing opportunities for youth across the state. Based on a model developed by the Texas Wildlife Association, volunteers are trained to safely conduct one, two, or three-day hunting or fishing events for youth and their parents. This past inaugural weekend, nine new Hunt Masters completed their certification and are now able to lead hunts on their own.

TWF would like to thank Federation volunteers, Dr. Gayden and Dr. Sloas, who generously donated their properties for the hunt, Gander Mountain, the Tennessee National Guard, and Peg Leg Porker for their sponsorships.

For more information about TWF’s Youth Hunting and Fishing Program, to become a Hunt Master, or to allow property to be used for future hunts, contact Matt Simcox at 615-353-1133 or visit TWF Youth Hunts.

Click here for additional photos from the weekend.

10 replies
  1. M. Young
    M. Young says:

    Thank you for putting a link to the hunt event photos. Outstanding results and a big thanks to the two landowners who opened their land up as hosts. Outstanding conservation.

    Regards, Mike

    Reply
  2. Nhan Nguyen - Youth Hunting and Fishing Coordinator
    Nhan Nguyen - Youth Hunting and Fishing Coordinator says:

    Jon – Current selections are made from active TNSCTP athletes. Eventually the program will open to all kids in Tennessee. If you would like to get your kids started in TNSCTP please go to: Programs/ TNSCTP to get more information Please call 615-353-1133 ext 222 and ask for the TWF Hunting and Fishing Coordinator Nhan Nguyen. We are happy to help in any way we can.

    Reply
  3. Megan Smith
    Megan Smith says:

    Oh my! I’ve got a 12, 13 and 14 year old that I’d LOVE to get involved in this! Please please please let us go next time!

    Reply
      • Nhan Nguyen - Youth Hunting and Fishing Coordinator
        Nhan Nguyen - Youth Hunting and Fishing Coordinator says:

        Troy – If you would like to volunteer with our program please give us a call here at the Tennessee Wildlife Federation office. 615-353-1133 ext 222 and ask for the TWF Hunting and Fishing Coordinator Nhan Nguyen

        Reply
    • Nhan Nguyen - Youth Hunting and Fishing Coordinator
      Nhan Nguyen - Youth Hunting and Fishing Coordinator says:

      Megan – Current selections are made from active TNSCTP athletes. Eventually the program will open to all kids in Tennessee. If you would like to get your kids started in TNSCTP please go to: Programs/ TNSCTP to get more information or you can give us a call anytime. We are happy to answer any questions you may have.

      Reply
  4. M Young
    M Young says:

    Good read, but inquiring minds would be interested in knowing about the success of these young hunters…..and what the details were about the deer that were harvested.

    Reply
    • Nhan Nguyen - Youth Hunting and Fishing Coordinator
      Nhan Nguyen - Youth Hunting and Fishing Coordinator says:

      If you go to: Programs / Youth Hunt and Fishing, you will be able to see pictures of the event. It did rain, however the kids and parents still had a good time. We had 9 kids attend and 8 deer harvested.

      Reply

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