As a jack-pine-savage (Duluth, Minn. native) living and working in Iowa for the past five years, chapters always seem to remind me of my “northern” heritage with the following joke- “What’s the best part of traveling south on I-35, Jared? Minnesota in the rearview mirror of course!”
All joking aside, if you haven’t lived in the Corn Belt of Iowa, it would be hard to understand the passion and commitment Pheasants Forever members hold for our habitat conservation mission. With this in mind, I am excited to be traveling back to Des Moines on February 20, 21 and 22 for the 2015 National Pheasant Fest & Quail Classic
at the Iowa Events Center.
Our national event is creating quite the buzz amongst the 105 chapters we have in the state. Iowa has hosted some of the biggest and best Pheasant Fest celebrations in the history of the organization, and those attending can expect nothing less for the coming year. Here are the top 8 reasons to attend the 2015 National Pheasant Fest & Quail Classic:
Dedicated Chapters - Simply put, Iowa chapters know how to have fun. You can expect great raffles, genuine hospitality and new events at the 2015 National Pheasant Fest & Quail Classic. Plus you’ll have plenty of chances to win a custom Pheasants Forever Kubota 400 and a plethora of firearms!
151 Percent Increase in August Roadside Survey - As someone who hunts a large majority of the pheasant season on public land, listen to my words of wisdom- pheasants are on the rise in Iowa. Take a few days and enjoy some late-season hunting leading up to Pheasant Fest and share your stories with us at the event!
Top 10 City - Hosting for the third time in the history of Pheasant Fest, Des Moines, Iowa has been named a top ten city for 2014 in the following categories: Best City for Young Professionals (Forbes), #1 Up-and-Coming Downtown (Fortune), Top 6 Family-Friendly Cities in America (Realty Times) and Top 10 Best States to Eat Local (Locavore). There is plenty to see and do for the whole family!
Iowa Habitat and Access Program (IHAP) - If you enjoy hunting public property, IHAP is the state’s newest walk-in hunting program. Pheasants Forever chapters are working hard to raise $400,000 in matching funds for this program; help us support more public land by contributing at Pheasant Fest through raffles or other means.
Hot Dog! - Those who have attended Pheasant Fest know bird dogs ARE NOT in short supply. If you are looking to find your future pup or learn some new techniques for training, visit Bird Dog Stage presented by Purina and SportDOG.
Become a Life Member – There is no better opportunity to support Pheasants Forever – In a weekend dedicated to the upland bird hunter, become a Life Member of Pheasants Forever or Quail Forever and have a chance to win a beautiful shotgun! Already a Life Member, I will be signing up my Black Lab, Koda, as a dog Life Member in 2015 and I urge you to do the same.
New and Expanded Vendors – The quantity and quality of vendors at Pheasant Fest continues to grow every year. No matter what you are looking for, Pheasant Fest has something to offer everyone from guns and gear to outfitters and dogs.
Wherever you might be from, I invite you to put your home state in the rearview mirror this February 20, 21, and 22, to join us for a celebration of upland wildlife conservation at the 2015 National Pheasant Fest and Quail Classic.
-Jared Wiklund is Pheasants Forever’s public relations specialist