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Deer hunt ‘targets’ disabled youth

Local handicapped children will get a taste of hunting and the outdoors while being housed in a lodge for a weekend.

The Bricklayers Local No. 7 is partnering with several local organizations to host the first annual Southern Ohio Whitetail Deer Hunt. The event will be Nov. 18 to 20 at the Shawnee Lodge in Portsmouth. The event is free.

First, the group will meet Friday morning at Camp Oyo for a gun safety class given by Ted Linscott of the Department of Natural Resources. The children will then practice shooting at a paper target.

Saturday morning the group will go out hunting early in their designated spots. Two adults will be present with each hunter at all times. The hunt will go on until noon when lunch will be served. The hunt will resume that afternoon. Then Saturday evening a banquet will be held with Ken Kudela, director of Ohio Administrative Council Bricklayers No. 7, will be guest speaker.

Sunday school will be held Sunday morning. Then the kids may go hunt for a few more hours if desired before heading home.

George McCalvin, a member of Bricklayers Local No. 7 has had this event planned for several years.

“About five years ago I was watching a hunting show called Buckmasters,” he said. “It had handicapped kids on it and I thought it would be cool to do.”

McCalvin emphasized that safety is the first priority.

“Two chaperones, including the parent or guardian will be with the kids at all times,” he said. “The chaperone will load and unload the gun. The only time a kid will actually handle the gun is when a deer is in sight.”

McCalvin has talked to many of the registrants and gets a sense of excitement.

“I’ve talked to several of (the kids) and they are looking forward to this,” he said.

Boys are not the only ones attending. McCalvin recounted talking to one girl who showed him pictures of her favorite hunter.

The registration deadline is Friday. For more information contact Dale McCleary at 740-370-5451 or McCalvin at 740-646-6590 about registering or being a sponsor.