Each year organizations and individuals offer their time and land to help young hunters experience a quality pheasant hunt. Usually the participants are selected from a drawing of students enrolled in a Hunter Safety Course so most are 12 or 13 years old. The South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks has set aside the second weekend of October for Youth Hunting, which is one week prior to the regular season. The youth hunt is usually co-hosted by the Safety Instructor and Landowner and each young hunter is accompanied by a parent or guardian. For more information about the upcoming Hunt Safe Courses in Mitchell, please click here.
Many Pheasant Country Members participate in this program by graciously offering their time and resources to this worthwhile program.
Typically the day begins with a drive to the farm early in the morning. Upon arrival they may enjoy breakfast pheasant tacos cooked on an outdoor grill. Then the instructor will talk about hunter safety and ethics before heading out to the field.
Once in the field the instructor will make sure that the parent or guardian has control of all the shells before instructing them to give one to the youth to load into the shotgun. When loaded the youth will proceed in a single line with an adult right behind and the instructor and landowner behind the parents.
The instructor makes sure that plenty of breaks are taken to allow for discussion about ethical hunting and pheasant Management. The landowner may explain what he did to improve the number of pheasants on his land and time is reserved for plenty of fellowship and visiting.
This is a very popular program in South Dakota made possible by volunteer Safety Instructors, landowners and pheasant enthusiasts.
On Thursday, August 7, 2014, the No Child Left Indoors PF picnic shelter was dedicated. A ribbon cutting was held with Mayor Ken Tracy and members of the Mitchell Park Department and other City officials as well as PF chapter members who celebrated this historic event for our Chapter and our community. Doug Molumby spoke at the event for our Chapter. He said that our President Dave Allen brought the idea to him to draw up a proposal which was presented to the Chapter Board of Directors. There are two reasons why they decided to build the project, first and foremost, to thank the businesses and people who have supported Pheasant Country/Pheasants Forever throughout the last 29 years. Secondly, it our Chapter wanted to do a major project that would fit in with the PF’s No Child Left Indoors Initiative.
We are very proud to be able to provide such a beautiful shelter for the public to enjoy. It is located along the shoreline of Lake Mitchell in a picturesque setting on the east side of the Sportsman’s Club near the east boat ramp. Our Chapter contributed $26,000 to this project with funds raised primarily from the annual Pheasant Country Banquet held each October in the Corn Palace. The project was spearheaded by our local member and Past President Doug Molumby ofSkip’s Design and Construction. It was built by Mueller Lumber with the masonry work by Brent Traupel of B T Masonry, Mitchell. Brent also donated the brick work on the monument which holds the plaque alongside the picnic shelter. (See the photos below.) A special thanks also goes to JD Concrete who contributed a $1,000 of concrete to the project and to Mitchell Concrete for their donation of concrete and to Zimmer Caulking.
The shelter is located on public park property and is there for everyone to enjoy. Reservations are not needed as it will be used on a first-come, first-serve basis. Our Chapter was inspired to do this project by the national PF’s No Child Left Behind program. (See dedication images.)