As cabin fever tightens its grip, a sure cure is the outdoor sports show season.
Outdoor sports shows are the perfect place to find out what's new, get the kids off the couch and get help to plan next year's vacation.
One of the first outdoor shows, the River City Hunt, Fishing, RV and Boat Expo from Jan. 18 to 20 at the Mid-America Center in Council Bluffs, is set up to provide fun outdoor experiences for the kids while parents check out the vendors.
Archery, a casting competition, the Daisy BB gun target area and learning turkey calls with Nebraska outdoor expert Dick Turpin are among the activities planned for youngsters, event promoter Judy Ramaekers said.
“We have a passion for teaching kids about the outdoors,” Ramaekers said.
One of the most fun activities occurs in the last two hours on the last day of the show when a trout rodeo is scheduled. Kids get a chance to catch trout by hand and keep the ones they catch.
“It's absolutely hilarious,” said Tom Hamilton, publicist for the River City show.
The show also may be a good place to rescue a dog. Seven dog rescue organizations will be at the show to introduce their organizations to the public and give people a chance to adopt a pet.
“Being dog people, we had an opportunity to involve rescue groups,” Hamilton said. “We found there were many groups that wanted to be a part of the show.”
One highlight among the show's seminars features Jim Mayer and his bleeder chain lures for ice fishing. The Lincoln physician developed the line of lures in 2007, and they've been selling fast since. The lure is designed to resemble a stream of blood droplets trailing out of wounded bait.
The event, staffed entirely by volunteers, is celebrating its 10th anniversary. Proceeds go to the Pottawattamie County Pheasants and Quail Forever chapter for several educational and conservation projects.
“We use the money for outdoor use education, to partner with landowners for the creation of habitat, some we donate to other chapters with good projects and a lot goes to land acquisition,” Hamilton said.
The group has purchased more than 300 acres in Pottawattamie County, repaired the habitat and then returned the land back to the county for public use.
“It's an opportunity for us to buy back our heritage,” Hamilton said.
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