North Carolina Hunter Education Skills Tournament
The 31st annual Youth Hunter Education Skills Tournament will be held April 25 at Millstone 4-H Center near Ellerbe, to determine team and individual state championships.
This popular competitive event is a component of the free hunter education program by the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission. The tournament is open to teams that previously competed and qualified at a district level.
Categories are orienteering, target shooting in archery, .22 rifle, shotgun and muzzleloader, along with testing in wildlife identification and hunting safety knowledge. There are senior (high school) and junior (middle school and elementary) levels, with overall team and overall individual awards based on aggregate scores in all events.
Organizers have requested that competitors, coaches and event volunteers wear something pink throughout the tournament this year to promote breast cancer awareness. Participants will receive a commemorative pink and white pin in recognition of their support.
"The increased popularity of the state tournament and the district tournaments is encouraging," said Travis Casper, the state's assistant hunter education coordinator, noting this year's event could draw upwards of 2,000 people. "And, just as encouraging is the application of safety and the degree of stewardship practiced by these young people."
Hunter education is required for all first-time hunting license buyers in North Carolina. Courses cover hunter ethics and responsibility, conservation and wildlife management, survival and first aid, specialty hunting and tree stand safety. For more information call (919) 707-0031.