Local youth take part in turkey hunt

Published 12:00 pm Tuesday, May 2, 2017

NWTF chapter event hosted 73 participants

KITTS HILL — The South Hills Longbeards Chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation hosted its 19th annual JAKES (Juniors Acquiring Knowledge, Ethics and Sportsmanship) Youth Turkey Hunt on Saturday, April 22, which brought out 73 youth to take part.

At the event, each child, ranging in age from 6 to 17, not only had the opportunity to hunt for wild turkeys, but 18 of the 73 were able to harvest a wild turkey during the hunt with eight of those being their first time harvesting a wild turkey.

“This weekend was a very special one for me, as I was able to take my son turkey hunting and witness him harvesting his first turkey,” Chris Sammons, public relations officer of the South Hills Longbears chapter, said. “I was in an automobile accident five years ago and was paralyzed from the waist down. Without the South Hills Longbeards, I would not have been able to take my son turkey hunting, let along see him harvest his first turkey.”

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Besides hunting, all of the participants also received an education on wild turkey biology and behavior, hunting regulations and hunting safely as well as turkey calls and other gifts.

The South Hills Longbeards chapter started the event 19 years ago as an opportunity for children to get away from the TV for two days and discover how exciting the outdoors can be. It’s also a way for children to connect with their parents or grandparents by spending time in the woods learning a long-time tradition in hopes that they will one day pass on to their children when they grow up.