The Greater Rochester Southern Tier Branch partnered with the Cornell Cooperative Extension to run a Field to Fork out of the Rochester Public Market that very much followed the Athens, Georgia pilot program. They accepted seven hunters, hosted two classroom sessions, assisted with hunter education, visited the gun range, gathered for meat processing demonstrations and mentored hunt opportunities. Soon, they will have a culinary social.
According to Branch President Bob Rose, “Watching this class progress, I anticipated opening day like it was my first, and sharing that excitement of their first deer took me back over 35 years to relive mine. It gave me a refreshing new outlook. This program is different. It isn’t a ‘take a new person out and plop them in a blind and go about your own hunt.’ This is really about a journey and being there shoulder to shoulder and passing to them what we have spent decades learning and loving.”
QDMA’s First New Hampshire Branch, along with the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF), hosted 21 first-time hunters and employees of Ruger and SIG Sauer at the Owl Brook Hunter Education Center in Holderness, N.H. After an organized training day, each new hunter was paired with a QDMA member to take their new knowledge afield. Branch member Bruce Hamel wrote, “Every QDMA mentor came away enthusiastic and energized knowing they helped a new hunter gain entry into the sport they so dearly enjoy. The gratification and fulfillment realized by every mentor has our Branch planning to continue the Field to Fork program for years to come.”
QDMA partnered with Jerry Tibbot and the Bearded Buck television show to host a Field to Fork in Pennsylvania. “The Field to Fork event held at the Bearded Buck was one of the most memorable experiences of my life,” said participant Tim Curran. “Each day of the hunt I was able to observe and identify wildlife. This experience has not only opened my eyes to the hunting lifestyle, but it has taught me the necessary skills required to be a successful deer hunter. The Field to Fork program is all about providing for ourselves by taking game from the field and putting it on our table. It’s much more than just a trigger pull.”
QDMA also partnered with Derek Stoner and the Pennsylvania Game Commission to host two more Field to Fork events in the state.
For more information about the Field to Fork program and additional photos, check out our Field to Fork page.