The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA


June 10, 2013

Bob Garrett's column: Girls, get outdoors

"A girl in the out-of-doors is as natural as a tree in the forest."

So what's your point? Without a doubt, that would be my sister's reaction to a statement such as: "A girl in the out-of-doors is as natural as a tree in the forest."

My response to my sister and to just about anyone else who is reading this article is that it's perfectly natural for girls to enjoy the outdoors and everything that nature offers. From mountaineering to recreational archery to Olympic shooting sports to extreme waterwater kayaking, women of all ages are showing that they have what it takes to be an "outdoorswomen."

Simply stated, the reason fewer women participate in hunting, fishing, backpacking and canoeing is because they have not had an opportunity to learn the outdoor skills that are necessary to enjoy these activities. Unfortunately, boys had gotten most of the opportunities to participate in these types of activities until recent years.

The non-profit organization known as Pennsylvania Women Outdoors just celebrated its 30th anniversary last weekend while kayaking on the Susquehanna River near Shanks Mere. Starting in 1991, the "Becoming an Outdoors Woman" program that is fully endorsed by the Pennsylvania Game Commission and dozens of sportsmen's organizations offers day-long outings for girls and women.

Clearly, women of all ages are interested in learning outdoor skills and when the opportunity is offered, they are lining up in growing numbers for the chance to be involved.

The Buffalo Valley Sportsmen's Club that's located north of Mifflinburg is hosting their 3rd annual Ladies Day on Saturday. Jay Bowersox who is coordinating the day, along with Les Johnson, told me that the club is very interested in growing the participation this day-long event.

"We try to provide a wide range of activities that will draw as many women and girls who are 15 or older," is how Bowersox explained the mission for Ladies Day.

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