National Game and Fish Day Turns 50 and Celebrates with an Event on September 24
September 9, 2022
National Hunting and Fishing Day celebrates its 50th anniversary this year. To mark the occasion in South Carolina, South Cove County Park in Oconee County will host a free and fun family event from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, September 24. This free family adventure is open to the public and all equipment is provided!
“National Game and Angling Day honors generations of sportsmen for their contributions to preserving our nation’s rich sporting traditions and natural resources,” said Angela Viney of Spartanburg, chair of the event. “One of the main purposes of National Game and Fish Day is to introduce young and old to the many activities available to them in the great outdoors. The hope is that with this introduction, new hunters and anglers will be “caught” by encouraging participation and increasing public awareness of the connection between hunting, angling and conservation. Through self-imposed excise fees and taxes, sportsmen have collected more $57 billion – more than $100,000 every 30 minutes – for conservation.
National Game and Fish Day on September 24 at South Cove County Park is made possible through partnerships with the SC Department of Natural Resources (SCDNR), Oconee County Parks and Recreation, Trout Unlimited, Clemson University Cooperative Extension Service, South Carolina 4-H Shooting Sports and Harry Hampton Memorial Wildlife Fund.
For directions and information, call South Cove County Park at (864) 882-5250 or visit their Facebook page at: www.facebook.com/southcovecountypark.
The 14th National Game and Fish Day celebration in the upstate will include activities such as archery, air rifles, camouflage games, rigging and throwing flies, kayaking, fishing on Lake Keowee and much more. In addition to hands-on events, more than 20 conservation and natural resource organizations will be on hand to share their missions and work in various environmental fields. Some participating in the event are: SC Forestry Commission, SC Wildlife Federation, US Coast Guard, US Forest Service, Beekeepers, SCDNR Boating Safety and other organizations.
National Game and Fish Day also celebrates the enormous economic impact of hunting and fishing in South Carolina. The overall effect, or total economic contribution, of fishing, hunting and wildlife viewing to Palmetto State is $2.74 billion and 31,958 jobs, according to The Economic Contribution of Natural Resources to South Carolina’s Economya report prepared by Clemson University in December 2016.
More than 100 years ago, hunters and anglers were the earliest and most vocal proponents of conservation and scientific wildlife management. They were the first to recognize that the rapid development and unregulated uses of wildlife threatened the future of many species. Led by fellow sportsman President Theodore Roosevelt, these early conservationists called for the first laws restricting the commercial killing of wildlife. They urged the sustainable use of fish and game, created hunting and fishing licenses, and lobbied for taxes on sports equipment to provide funds for state conservation agencies. These actions were the basis of the North American model of wildlife conservation, a scientific user-pays system that would foster the most spectacular conservation successes of all time. Thanks to these efforts, populations of white-tailed deer, elk, antelope, wild turkeys, wood ducks and many other species have begun to recover from decades of unregulated exploitation.
On May 2, 1972, President Richard Nixon signed the first proclamation of National Fish and Game Day, writing, “I urge all citizens to join outdoor sportsmen in wisely utilizing our natural resources and ensure their proper stewardship for the benefit of future generations.” By the end of the summer, all 50 governors and more than 600 mayors had joined in proclaiming state and local versions of National Game and Fish Day. The response was dramatic.
National Game and Fish Day promotes the contributions of hunters and anglers to conservation. It is traditionally held on the fourth Saturday in September. For more information, visit https://nhfday.org/.