For many years, Maine’s Department of Inland Fisheries & Wildlife has auctioned off Moose Hunting permits to generate scholarship money for young people to attend a week-long summer camp program; “Conservation Camp”. We grateful to receive some of this funding support, and our campers are also very appreciative, as is demonstrated in the thank you letters at the end of the IF&W MonthlyReport090613
Ron Fournier, summer camp director of the University of Maine 4-H Camp and Learning Center at Bryant Pond, recently hosted an educational archery session with his wife Dee at the Maine Wildlife Park in Gray. Fournier, who is also a 4-H-certified shooting sports safety instructor for the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, told the Lakes Region Weekly the activity is “great, wholesome recreation.”
The July edition of Down East magazine named the University of Maine 4-H Camp and Learning Center at Bryant Pond the best wilderness training camp in the state. The listing, part of the magazine’s “Best of Maine” feature, referred to the camp as “a welcome throwback to camps of old.”
Bryant Pond, Maine — University of Maine 4-H Camp & Learning Center at Bryant Pond is one of two programs to receive $60,000 from the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife’s annual Moose Hunting Permit Auction for its youth conservation education summer camp programming.
The department auctions 10 moose hunting permits annually to applicants who submit the highest bids through a written bid process. All funds from the sale of these permits, including bidding fees, are deposited into a nonlapsing fund to be used to pay the costs to administer the program and to fund youth conservation education programs in Maine. Winning bids for 2013 ranged from $10,191.11 to $11,734.56.
The Bryant Pond 4-H Camp awards these funds as $250 scholarships toward the cost of many of its summer camp programs. These scholarships are for Maine residents only, are all one-time use and issued on a first-come, first-serve basis. The Bryant Pond program has been a recipient of these funds since the moose permit legislation was enacted in 1995. As a result, hundreds of Maine young people have used the scholarship funds to attend a summer session of “Conservation Camp,” earning their boating or hunter safety certification.
More information about University of Maine 4-H Camp & Learning Center’s programs is online (umaine.edu/bryantpond/summer-camp). For summer camp scholarship information, contact Bryant Pond 4-H Camp, 207.665.2068.
Image Description: Umaine ExtensionBryant Pond 4-H Camp
University of Maine Cooperative Extension is one of seven state 4-H programs to receive $100,000 for its youth firearm safety programming from the MidwayUSA Foundation, Inc. and Scholastic Shooting Trust. The funding is part of a $3 million donation from Larry and Brenda Potterfield, founders of MidwayUSA. In addition to supporting 4-H Shooting Sports programs, the donation provided 192 shooting sports teams nationwide endowments of $10,000 each.
Last November, the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife also administered $23,600 from the U.S. Department of the Interior/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to support a three year 4-H Shooting Sports partnership. Additionally, in June of last year, the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation donated $10,000 to the endowment fund, which was matched by the Potterfields.
In the 4-H Shooting Sports programs, youths learn marksmanship, safe and responsible use of firearms, and principles of hunting and archery. The activities of the program and the support of caring adult leaders provide young people with opportunities to develop life skills, self-worth, and conservation ethics, says Scott Olsen, the Maine 4-H Shooting Sports Program Coordinator and Marketing and Outreach Director at Bryant Pond 4-H Camp and Learning Center. To learn more about University of Maine 4-H Shooting Sports program visit http://umaine.edu/bryantpond/4-h-shooting-sports/ .
When: Saturday, April 6 and Sunday, April 7, 2013
Where: Pleasant River Fish and Game Conservation Association, Columbia, Maine
Thanks to a grant from the Maine Community Foundation to enhance our S.T.E.M. (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) programming here at Bryant Pond 4-H Camp, we have installed a weather station which can be accessed at the following website: http://rainwise.net/weather/ryan04219
In an article about the coming Phillips Outdoor Heritage Days, the Irregular newspaper in Kingfield described the University of Maine Cooperative Extension 4-H archery program, offered for more than 50 years at the 4-H Camp and Learning Center at Bryant Pond, as a program that strengthens children’s relationships with the natural world through a combination of outdoor fun, practical woods-wise skills and hands-on conservation education.
The University of Maine 4-H Shooting Sports program has partnered with Maine’s Department of Inland Fisheries & Wildlife to expand their youth shooting sports education program statewide over the next three years. The Bryant Pond 4-H Camp, now the University of Maine 4-H Shooting Sports (4HSS) program headquarters, has a long history of partnership with IF&W. Bryant Pond operates an on-site youth Conservation Camp during the summer, where young people have an opportunity to earn their archery or firearms hunter safety certification. This new partnership enables the 4HSS staff to work with IF&W Recreational Safety instructors, County Extension offices, local sporting clubs and other partners to extend the outreach of these important programs.
In the spring of 2011, Maine Department of Inland Fisheries & Wildlife Recreational Safety Coordinator, Mike Sawyer approached the 4HSS staff at Bryant Pond requesting a three-year proposal to expand and enhance the delivery of shooting sports safety education statewide. By fall of 2011, funding was in place to begin offering training programs across the state. Through a Maine Outdoor Heritage Fund grant, we have recently purchased an enclosed trailer, which will be used to transport shooting sports program equipment to all corners of Maine.
This past winter, a 6-week pilot program was delivered at Westbrook High School to 22 juniors and seniors, who earned their archery hunter safety certification as part of their in-school curriculum. As I write this, the second Westbrook High School program is underway, and our 4HSS Trailer and staff have just left the parking lot, headed for Millinocket to deliver a 3-day program for 60 Middle School youth.
Future plans for the program include in-school, afterschool and youth group programs, outreach programs in all areas of Maine, including establishing county-based 4HSS clubs (like the Cumberland County Bullseyes). In addition, we also offer summer camp programs in Archery, Rifle & Shotgun and Apprentice Hunter (which includes an upland bird hunt).
Of course, to pull all this off, we need a corps of dedicated volunteers and instructors. To that end, we are sending four Bryant Pond staff to a week-long 4HSS Training in Kansas. They will return certified to instruct Maine volunteers to work with young people. Soon after their return, we will be offering a weekend training workshop for instructors interested in working with children in the following shooting sports disciplines: Archery, Rifle, Shotgun or Wildlife/Hunting.
4-H Shooting Sports is a nationally recognized model for encouraging active lifestyles, and holistic youth development. 4-H embraces a “Learn by Doing” teaching model and has documented success in promoting long-term involvement and leadership development. By partnering actively with the State of Maine and other public and private entities to implement the program Statewide, The University of Maine 4-H Shooting Sports program will contribute the development of a citizenry with life-long, active, outdoor hunting and shooting interests.
For over 50 years the University of Maine 4-H Camp & Learning Center at Bryant Pond (formerly the Maine Conservation School) has strengthened children’s relationship to the natural world with a combination of inspired outdoor fun, practical woods-wise skills, and “hands-on” conservation education. For more information please visit our website: www.umaine.edu/bryantpond or call 207-665-2068.
The University of Maine 4-H Shooting Sports Program is pleased to announce that the Brook Family Foundation recently donated $10,000 on their behalf to the MidwayUSA Scholastic Shooting Sports Trust Fund. The Brook Family Foundation has consistently supported the shooting sports programs at the Bryant Pond camp with scholarship funds for programs like Apprentice Hunter and Shotgun & Rifle Camp. The Potterfield family, owners of MidwayUSA, will provide a 3:1 match to the Brook Family Foundation gift, and all other gifts to the Trust Fund for the rest of 2012. Click here for more information.