Sept 23: Unicoi Outdoor Adventure Day

August 13, 2017

Sept. 23 (Sat): Save the date for the annual Unicoi Outdoor Adventure Day. VOLUNTEERS NEEDED!

It’s that time of the year again! Interested volunteers should reply to me, preferably by email (jeff.durniak@dnr.ga.gov) Office phone:770-535-5498 and fax 5953.

Please consider volunteering to help us at Unicoi State Park’s Outdoor Adventure Day to celebrate National Hunting and Fishing Day on Saturday, 9/23/17. You don’t have to be an expert outdoorsman or woman to play a vital role in the day’s success. Can you help at registration or direct parking? There’s a niche for everyone.

Unicoi State Park’s management company, Coral Hospitality, hosts us, WRD Game Management Supervisor Scott Frazier will handle the budget, and I will handle event staffing. We (DNR) need a hundred or so volun- teers to make this event happen. Many of you are OAD veterans, but the following info may help prospective volunteers to understand the roles they could play and to make the decision to join our ranks. To fill out my roster and to ensure good communications with all of you volunteers, I would like the following info from each volunteer:

=================================================== PLEASE COMPLETE THIS FORM

1) Your name : _______________
2) Your affiliation (if you’d like me to credit your group or club) :_________________ 3) email address: ______________
4) phone number : ________________
5) first choice of venue : ______________
6) second choice of venue: ____________
7) are you willing to work anywhere I need somebody (y/n)? ____

======================================================
First come, first served. The majority of the event is held along the creek downstream from Unicoi Dam

(map: http://www.unicoilodge.com/ga-state-park/park-map/)
Below is the narrative from previous years’ volunteer instructions to help you understand the duties at each venue. Thanks for your consideration. We can’t pull off this event without an army of vols!

Venue Info:

• Registration tent. These workers will greet visitors and get signed liability release forms and pens back from them in exchange for raffle tickets. Detailed instructions will be provided to you on Saturday (9/23), as Kim trains you. Visitors will be given an arm band as proof of signing the release form (so they can shoot).

• Raffle tent. Visitors will put one copy of the raffle ticket into the raffle bucket of their choice and keep the other copy. The raffle will start at 1 PM for free prizes. I have a small, separate work force assigned to the raffle. Volunteers on my roster are eligible for prizes, also!

• Parking. Lodge staff will guide visitor vehicles to orderly parking in the big field. Parks staff also have a plan for overflow parking, if needed. They may need a few helpers to direct traffic and explain the venue lay- out to arriving guests as they depart their vehicles.

• Archery. Hands-on. One-on-one instruction by WRD and Traditional Bowhunters Association. Note that this venue is on far side of Smith Creek, next to the laundry building. It can be reached by the road cross- ing up near the dam or by the footbridge over the creek to the group camp. Some of you may be asked to pro- vide security. Just stand at edge of venue and prevent visitors from straying into the line of fire.

• Airgun. Hands on by WRD, 4-H Club, and other volunteers. Same as #4, and located next to it. Again, a few of you may secure the perimeter.

• Skeet. Handled mainly by well-trained DNR and USFS Rangers and Game Management Technicians. It’s 500 yards downstream from the main event (safety, safety). A few of you may simply help at the sign-in tent and keep waiting guests a safe distance away from the shooting area (no experience needed).

• Fishing tent. This is where visitors can exchange a driver’s license for a loaner fishing pole and bait. Biologists, fishing guides, TU’ers, and other fibbers can answer questions and give fishing tips. Fisheries staff will need at least 6 helpers to stay at the tent to handle loaner rod untangling, knot-tying, bait distribution, and rod checkout. This is a busy, yet fun tent.

• Fly casting. Part of the field will be set aside for casting instruction. I suggest that volunteers bring a rod that they don’t mind visitors tinkering with (DON’T BRING YOUR GOOD SAGE OR WINSTON!!!). I am venue leader for casting and tying. If you tie, bring your tying stuff with you, too.

• Fly tying instruction. Bring your supplies and an extra vise if you have one. Let visitors sit down at the table and tie his/her own fly to take home. Variations of the woolly worm (W. bugger, Anytime/Anywhere, etc.) or San Juan worm have worked well for me in the past. Kids love a gold bead and a big, gaudy fly. Girls love pink flies. Beads from craft store, yarn from Wal Mart. Cheap, easy, and fun for visitor. Many visitors are shy, so you may have to speak up and encourage youngsters to come over and tie their own fly.

• Fishing-stream helpers. Grab a pocket fishing kit (hooks and shot) and some bait (corn) that WRD will supply and go help people fishing on stream. Search them out—look at stringers, tackle used, and forlorn faces. Find a kid and work with him/her for an hour or so on reading water, casting, setting hook, etc. Mentoring! Fishing is NOT restricted to kids only (parent has the driver’s license, so they must be hooked, too). Feel free to bring some of your favorite baits to help your reputation as an awesome fishing guide. We will have about 100 loaner poles available, but feel free to bring an extra Zebco outfit if you have one to loan to your “student,” since we made more than 200 loans at our last event. Some of you can help WRD staff stock creek around 9:45AM. Get some kids to help too – we’re bringing buckets to get them involved.

• Wildlife. The experts pretty much run their own shows. Volunteers here will mainly help WRD Wildlife Education Specialists Kathy Church and Pete Griffin with logistics needed by the demonstrators (tables, chairs, PR, food and water, etc).

Thanks for considering the donation of your Saturday to preserve the future of your sport! Please provide your information to me if you are interested in helping DNR to promote outdoor recreation and plant some seeds of conservation.

Sincerely, Jeff

Jeff Durniak

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