Wildlife & Forestry Festival set for Sept. 28
What’s happening in the Ark-La -Tex on Saturday, Sept. 28? This is the day of the Wildlife & Forestry Festival, a unique event for northwest Louisiana.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Louisiana Department of Wildlife & Fisheries are sponsoring this festival to celebrate National Hunting & Fishing Day. The festival is held in Tom Merrill Recreation Area on Bayou Bodcau Dam & Reservoir (also known as the Bodcau Wildlife Management Area). The festival is open from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The festival location is three miles northeast of Bellevue, Louisiana on the Bodcau Dam Road.
From I-20 between Bossier City and Minden take the Haughton (#33) exit. Travel north on La. 157 for nine miles. At Bellevue turn right on the Bodcau Dam Road. Drive three miles and turn left on the entrance road to Tom Merrill Recreation Area.
For the outdoorsman, both young and old, there is a little something for everyone. Various hunting and fishing hands-on demonstrations are conducted throughout the day. Trapping techniques, deer/hog/alligator skinning demonstration, deer aging, fly tying, fish sampling techniques, youth fishing, youth casting, archery, shotgun shooting, muzzleloader shooting, BB shoot, paint ball, backpacking, canoeing, bee keeping, falconry, arts and crafts, farmers’ market and the “Dusty Boots” country band are just a sample of the activities to be enjoyed at the festival. Admission is free.
For nature lovers, come explore the Durden Hills Nature Trail. Guided nature hikes are conducted twice during the day. Test your outdoor knowledge to win a NHFD T-shirt or baseball cap during the guided hike. Continuous activities through out the day include: youth BB shooting, youth fishing, youth casting, youth and adult modern bow and traditional archery, shotgun shooting, muzzleloader shooting, and canoeing.
Test your skills at archery by entering into the 3-D Archery Tournament that will be held on the grounds of the Durden House Environment Education Center located within a quarter-mile of the festival site.
To get a bird’s eye view of a typical Louisiana swamp, travel down the slow-moving waters of Bayou Bodcau in a canoe or kayak. All equipment will be provided as well as safety tips and how-to instruction.
If you hunger for something a little different, then try the cuisine at the Wild Game Tasting Booth. There will be plenty of good food, music and fun for everyone. Put your name in the pot for door prizes to be given away. You must be present to win.
Experience the great Louisiana outdoors, become an outdoor sportsman, and learn to be good stewards of our land. What we do today in the conservation and preservation of our natural resources will effect future generations.
For example, in the early 1900s, there were only 500,000 whitetail deer in the United States. Today, there are over 12 million, thanks in part to sportsmensupported management programs.
We need the public’s help and cooperation if such programs are to continue to be successful.
How can you contribute? Join in the fun at Bayou Bodcau and support National Hunting & Fishing Day.