SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — South Dakota Game, Fish & Parks is encouraging families to get outdoors to hunt and fish.
The Outdoor Campus in Sioux Falls has spent months assembling items for its Hunting & Fishing Gear Giveaway.
“We are asking people around the area to donate their gently used hunting and fishing and camping gear,” Program Naturalist Derek Klawitter said.
Program Naturalist Derek Klawitter says more than 600 people attended last year’s inaugural event, opening the doors to new adventures.
“We found through years of doing outdoor programs here one of the barriers here is not having the right gear to get outdoors to go hunting and fishing, trapping, camping and stuff like that,” Klawitter said.
“If you are just beginning to dabble in the outdoors, you don’t know how serious you’re going to be, what particular things you’re going to want to do, it can be cost prohibitive to go out and get it for yourself,” Sioux Falls resident Rex Johnson said.
Rex Johnson is a mentor for the Hunting 101 program and has donated items for the Hunting & Fishing Gear Giveaway.
“What people do when they can’t hunt or fish is they often hunt in catalogs. I was guilty of that for a lot of years, so I accumulated a lot of stuff that I had duplicates of or things I just didn’t use,” Johnson said.
You won’t find firearms or ammunition at the gear giveaway, but everything else is game, and there’s still time to donate.
“Hunting clothing, boots, hats, gloves, coveralls, stuff to keep people warm when they’re outside, but we’re also accepting decoys, trapping equipment, kayaking equipment, anything people use and will get people in the outdoors,” Klawitter said.
A donation of your time can be just as valuable.
“If you’ve ever thought about mentoring, just do it. This can be a part of that experience as well, sharing your equipment with people who are just beginning to decide whether or not they want to be an outdoors person,” Johnson said.
The Hunting and Fishing Gear Giveaway is Saturday, August 12th from 9:00 until noon at The Outdoor Campus in Sioux Falls.