Sportsmen and Women Invited to Garden State Deer Classic January 13-16
More than 50 of New Jersey's most outstanding white-tailed deer from the 2003-04 hunting season will be on display at the Garden State Deer Classic to be held during the Garden State Outdoor Sportsmen's Show, January 13-16 in Raritan Center, Edison. The Deer Classic is jointly sponsored by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection's Division of Fish and Wildlife (DFW), New Jersey State Federation of Sportsmen's Clubs, United Bowhunters of New Jersey and the Garden State Outdoor Sportsman's Show.
The Deer Classic is an annual event showcasing hunter entries in New Jersey's Outstanding White-tailed Deer Program that was initiated in 1964. It includes categories for typical and non-typical antlered deer taken with bow, shotgun, muzzleloading rifle and crossbow (allowed with a special permit issued by the DFW for the physically challenged) in addition to the 200-pound buck and 135-pound doe field-dressed weight categories. All antlered deer are scored using the Boone & Crockett Club system that gives credit to antler length, spread, number of points and symmetry.
Age, health, genetics and nutrition are the major factors contributing to deer reaching trophy status.
In addition to the outstanding deer display, hunters are invited to attend the following seminars presented by deer hunting experts on Saturday and Sunday during the outdoor show.
10 a.m. - Habitat Management for Healthier Deer by Rusty Brown (environmental science educator, consulting wildlife biologist and avid deer hunter)
11:30 a.m. - Can You Stand It? Cold Weather Hunting by Ed Slater (DFW hunter education instructor, general manager of Harry's Army Navy Store in Bordentown and creator of "A Hunter's Edge" Web site)
1 p.m. - Habitat Management for Healthier Deer by Rusty Brown
2 p.m. - After the Shot: What Makes or Breaks Game Recovery by Ed Slater
10 a.m. - After the Shot: What Makes Or Breaks Game Recovery by Ed Slater
11 a.m. - You're Already a Member of This Hunting "Club": Maximize the Benefits of Hunting New Jersey's Public Land by Keith Griglak (DFW senior biologist/northern region hunter education coordinator and avid bow hunter)
12 p.m. - Lure Them In: Tips And Tricks To Attract That Trophy by Ed Slater
In addition to the above, DFW deer biologists will be on hand each day to answer questions, provide information and score antlers for anyone who brings their antlers to the display area.
The Garden State Outdoor Sportsmen's Show will be held on Thursday and Friday, January 13 and 14 from 1 - 9 p.m.; on Saturday, January 15 from 9 a.m. - 8 p.m. and on Sunday, January 16 from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
A special awards ceremony will be held on Sunday, January 16 at 2:30 p.m. for the top three 2003-2004 entries in each category. As this standing-room-only event is extremely popular, visitors are encouraged to arrive early.