The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

November 7, 2012

Bob Garrett's Talking Points: Seminar explores Chronic Wasting Disease

— If you head south to hunt deer, or if you just want to pick up information on the dreaded Chronic Wasting Disease, you may want to attend a seminar 7 tonight at the York Fairgounds.

Representatives from the PA Department of Agriculture will be on hand to answer questions and to explain the plan in place to identify all of the deer that may have come into contact with the captive deer that was diagnosed with the disease back in early October. The Game Commission established a 600-square mile chronic wasting disease management area that includes Adams and York counties.

By the way, a check station for deer harvested in these two counties has been set up in the Game Lands 249 maintenance building that is on Lake Meade Road near East Berlin. Check-ins are voluntary during archery season and will be mandatory during the rifle deer season.

Sportsmen’s caravan scores

While we missed our mark big-time on the big race, our sportsmen’s caravan that traveled the state to promote the NRA-endorsed slate of candidates for this Tuesday’s election scored an impressive 31-for-34 record.

The big race was for President and Vice President, and it was just impossible to overcome the record-setting turnout in the urban areas, so we came up short.

We did help with a gain of at least one and the defense of a few more State House seats, and we won all of the targeted Congressional seats. We stayed clear of the U.S. Senate race.

Unfortunately, we didn’t win the State Senate seat where I live, and this seat probably went to a new senator who likely won’t be sympathetic to sportsmen’s and sportswomen’s issues.

However, a highlight for me was we did get a huge win for my new Congressman, who is the author of Pennsylvania’s Castle Doctrine and several other pieces of key outdoor legislation.

Good shooting equals good pay

Jamie Gray of Lebanon brought home a gold medal for her shooting at the London Olympics back in August.

Last week, USA Shooting announced that it would be giving Gray and two other Olympians a bonus of $60,000 each for their gold medal-winning shooting. This is in addition to the $25,000 that the U.S. Olympic Committee had already paid to each gold medalist.

Gray won gold in the women’s three-position rifle. She competed in four separate Olympic events.

The CEO of USA Shooting, Robert Mitchell, stated that, “My organization is proud to recognize our Olympic medalists on behalf of shooters, both good and not so good, nationwide. Hopefully, this financial incentive will help in recruiting more young shooters into this phenomenal sport and encourage them to make the diligent preparations that prepare a shooter to compete on the world stage for our great nation.”

Photo contest

The Susquehanna Valley Visitors Bureau is hosting its Fifth Annual Photo Contest.

The theme for this year’s contest is, “Every turn a treasure.” This certainly has an outdoor feel to me because the contest guidelines suggest that the photographers show, with their snapshots, what they treasure about the Susquehanna Valley.

The photos must be in a digital format and should have been taken within this calendar year. Deadline to submit entries is Feb. 1.

The contest application may be downloaded from the visitor center’s web site at

Millions of campers

The Outdoor Foundation, the Coleman Company and the Kampgrounds of America conducted a year-long survey that just wrapped up.

They learned that 43 million Americans camped out at least one night in the past year.

This impressive number represents nearly 15 percent of the entire population in our country.

These findings and many more interesting outdoor-related tidbits can be found in the American Camper Report.