The 2018 Hunting Film Tour

The Hunting Film Tour (HFT) is back in Paradise for a second year, thanks to Ducks Unlimited. This feature-length film showcases the finest short hunting films available. This is a celebration of the hunt – why we seek remote places, quiet times and wild critters. You are invited.

This year’s celebration happens next Thursday evening, March 1, at 6 p.m. We will convene at the SURC Theatre on the Central Washington University Campus here in Ellensburg. (All attendees will be in the drawing for a Yeti cooler.)

This year’s film features nine beautifully filmed hunting videos from across North America. These amazing videos have titles like Blue Collar, Arctic Red, Strut, The Zone, 3 Up 2 Down, and In Search of Reverence. Several homeys who attended last year’s 2017 film tell me they can still close their eyes and be carried away by those hunters’ experiences. This film is an intimate, honest celebration of hunters and hunting, wild places and wild things.

You will find previews and other info at huntingfilmtour.com/. Click on “Trailers” to see samples of breathtaking cinematography and the rhythms of our hunting lives.

Sportsman’s Warehouse is now the Official Retail Partner of the tour. The other sponsors and partners of HFT read like a Who’s Who of hunting, conservation and outdoor gear. Outfits like Sitka Gear, Yeti, RMEF, North American Wild Sheep Foundation, Vortex Optics, Traeger, CarbonTV, Spypoint, Mathews, Kimber and Kennetrek join Ducks Unlimited and others to make sure the films find their way into theatres across North America. This year’s film will be seen in hundreds of theatres across North America, with groups like the South Dakota Wildlife Federation hosting half a dozen showings in that state alone.

Bringing the HFT to audiences like us is clearly in line with the Ducks Unlimited mission statement, noting that it “conserves, restores, and manages wetlands and associated habitats for North America’s waterfowl. These habitats also benefit other wildlife and people.” This is OUR mission, as well; from the nationwide Hunting Film Tour sponsors to local outfits like our 99-year-old Kittitas County Field and Stream Club. We are all in the game of ensuring wildlife and its habitat for our children’s children and those who follow them.

Here’s a brief primer on Ducks Unlimited. It formed in 1937, combining early groups which grew from the Boone and Crockett Club in response to North America’s nosediving waterfowl numbers. It became the model for other successful wildlife conservation organizations which have made huge strides toward having wildlife for future generations. DU’s 700,000+ world-wide members have raised more than three and a half billion dollars since 1937 – more than 80% of that money going directly to conservation projects, enhancing waterfowl, wetlands and other critical habitats. Nearly 14,000,000 acres have been conserved across North America. No other conservation or environmental group matches DU for putting its money where its mouth is.

The wetlands producing most of our waterfowl also provide habitat for billions of land birds and animals. Much of that wetland ground is under constant development threat. International DU has been most successful at finding solutions protecting habitat and meeting human needs. This is why DU is supported by a broad range of sportsmen – not just waterfowl fans.

Restoring and enhancing quality habitat in key waterfowl areas is a game we play each time we commit to look after wild things and wild places. Eastern Washington is one of the top ten DU support regions in North America. In addition, more than 30,000 Washington residents buy federal duck stamps – a good many are non-hunters, seeing the duck stamp program as a way to contribute to the future of all bird life. Since its inception in 1934, this program has conserved 5.7 million acres and created or expanded 300 federal wildlife refuges. No matter how you look at it, waterfowl habitat conservation serves almost all the wild things in which we share interest.

Everything you want to know about waterfowl and the conservation of its habitat is at www.fws.gov/duckstamps/conservation/mbcc.htm, www.birdnote.org, or www.ducks.org.

In six days, we will convene in the SURC Theatre at 6:00 p.m. One of us will leave with a Yeti65 Cooler, a bunch of us will have hats, mugs and other swag, and all of us will enjoy a great film of hunters celebrating the lives we live – and dream of living.

Get your $10 ticket online at www.ducks.org/washington/events/51641/ellensburg-hunting-film-tour, at 509-423-3954, or at the door of the SURC Theatre (the SURC is at the end of Chestnut, just north of University Way).

This film – and the others past and yet to come – are the celebrations of the devotion we carry to our hunting heritage and a forever future for wildlife and those who come after us. Remember that our children are the emissaries we send to a time we will never see; what do we want them to take?

See you next Thursday evening.

Written by Jim Huckabay. Posted in Uncategorized

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