Best Dogs of the Black Belt Contest Opens: January Newsletter
Hunting for the Best Sporting Dogs
Hunters in the Black Belt are justifiably proud of their dogs, those who work the fields and woods with them. With these great dogs in mind, the Alabama Black Belt Adventures Association is sponsoring another online photo contest – “Best Dogs of the Black Belt” – with the goal of putting the spotlight on the great dog hunting opportunities available in the region.
The contest is open to photos of all hunting dogs. Lap dogs are great too, but this contest is NOT for them. We want photos of dogs in the woods, on point, in action, or posing with their retrieved bird or game. Photos can include the owner or family members as a sidekick to the main star – your furry friend and hunting partner. A general snapshot of your canine in his comfy bed, hanging out on the porch or anything else other than showing off his hunting skills will not qualify.
The winner will be the photo that receives the most votes by our deadline of March 31, 2020. The top vote-getter will receive a Filson Game Mesh Vest (valued at $145) perfect for the Black Belt’s mild winter seasons and designed for upland bird and small game hunting, donated by Quail Forever, one of the nation’s leading conservation organizations, plus three varieties of Sure Shot game calls – the Yentzen Classic (the original double reed duck call), the Rascal 7-in-1 call for duck, quail and turkey hunting and the Speckle Belly Goose Call along with the LANYARD (valued at $125). Total prize package is worth $270. (Photo at left by Logan Hinners.)
Upload your entry to AlabamaBlackBeltAdventures.org/bestblackbeltdogs.
ALBBAA promotes and encourages ethical hunting and fishing practices. Its contests were created to further educate the public on the abundance of natural resources found in Alabama’s Black Belt region.
Big Buck Photo Contest Deadline Looming
There are just a few days remaining in the Alabama Black Belt Adventures Association’s annual Big Buck Photo Contest – our eighth – with the deadline approaching on Feb. 10, which is also the end of the deer season in Alabama. We have had a great response with entries from 16 of our 23 Black Belt counties, thus far.
There’s still time to enter: Just go to AlabamaBlackBeltAdventures.org/bigbuckphotocontest and upload your photograph of any deer taken during the 2019-20 season. You can vote for any (or all) entries once per day, per email address, on the same web page.
The winner will be the photo that receives the most votes and this year that person will get a CVA .50 caliber Optima Muzzleloader with KonusPro Scope and gun case, valued at $535.
Fins, Feathers & Flowers Is Feb. 21-23
Lakepoint State Park on beautiful Lake Eufaula will be hosting the annual Fins, Feathers & Flowers weekend Feb. 21-23. This event is sponsored by the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources’ State Parks, State Lands and Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries divisions, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service/Eufaula National Wildlife Refuge.
The weekend features programs on the flora and fauna of the Alabama Black Belt, with birding walks, pontoon boat tours, fishing and aquatic education, a falconry hunt demonstration and more.
The park is offering a Fins, Feathers & Flowers lodging package of three days and two nights that includes a Friday night social, Saturday night dinner and Sunday box lunch and program with breakfast, lodging and field trips for $202 (single occupancy) or $262 (double). Contact the park at 334-687-8011 or visit alapark.com/Lakepoint-state-park and use group code 5150 (expires Jan. 31). Visit the website for more information.
Forever Wild Board to Meet Feb. 6
The Board of Trustees of the Alabama Forever Wild Land Trust will hold its first quarterly meeting of 2020 on Thursday, Feb. 6, at the Richard Beard Building, Agriculture and Industries Auditorium, 1445 Federal Dr., in Montgomery. The meeting will begin at 10 a.m.
According to a release from the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, updates on Forever Wild program activities and tract assessments will be presented at this meeting. Anyone who would like to make comments concerning Forever Wild will be able to address the board.
The public is invited to attend this meeting and is encouraged to submit nominations of tracts of land for possible Forever Wild program purchase. Written nominations may be submitted by email to Forever.Wild@dcnr.alabama.gov or by letter to the State Lands Division, Room 464, 64 N. Union St., Montgomery, AL, 36130. Nominations can also be made online at www.alabamaforeverwild.com/contact/nominate_land_tracts.
If Americans with Disabilities Act accommodations are needed, please contact Jo Lewis at 334-242-3051 or Jo.Lewis@dcnr.alabama.gov. Requests should be made as soon as possible, but at least 72 hours prior to the scheduled meeting.
Last Chance to Order ‘Black Belt Bounty’ First Edition
If your Christmas was spoiled because you didn’t receive a copy of the new hardcover deluxe coffee table book, “Black Belt Bounty,” do not despair. You can buy one – or two – for yourself. Only a few first edition copies remain – so hurry if you want one of these. However, a second printing is on the way and you can still place an order online and we’ll be sure to ship the book(s) once in hand which is expected mid-March. It will definitely become a family heirloom to be enjoyed by generations of family members.
Visit our website at alabamablackbeltadventures.org/blackbeltbountybook to order the $49.95 228-page book that celebrates the rich traditions of hunting and fishing in Alabama’s Black Belt. The book offers stunning images from some of the most gifted and award-winning wildlife photographers and artists with words from the top outdoors scribes in Alabama. Plus, you’ll find recipes from some of the top chefs in the state along with signature dishes from Black Belt hunting and fishing lodges.
“Black Belt Bounty” offers articles on the first hunters and gatherers, traditions and rites of passage, the land and water, conservation partners and practices, champion trainers and dogs, fishing for bass and crappie and catfish along with photographic essays on the seasons of the whitetail and wild turkey rituals.
The book is also on sale across the region at 905 Gallery, Selma; Black Belt Treasures, Camden; Caliber, Homewood; Gibson’s Home Center, Union Springs; Vinson Market, Montgomery; Monroe County Museum, Monroeville; Orrville Farmer’s Market, Orrville; Superior Pecans, Eufaula; and The Mustard Seed, Demopolis.
Wilcox Tour of Homes Is March 28
Mark your calendar for a special annual event in Wilcox County. Saturday, March 28 is the 2020 Wilcox County Tour of Homes, sponsored by the Wilcox County Historical Society.
At least six homes and churches are already on the tour list and more may be added. A special welcome reception is set for March 27 at Riverbend, sponsored by Chris Bailey and Ryan Dunagan, owners of The Pecan on Broad in Camden.
The list of historic sites to see will include: River Bluff Plantation-the Beck-Bryant-Talbot Home, the Strother-Gibbs Home, the Matthews-Tait-Rutherford Home (Yaupon Plantation), the Liddell-Phillippi Home (House on the Hill), the Camden Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church and the First Presbyterian Church.
A new feature this year will be a living history presentation on the grounds of Liberty Hall, which will have a portion of the first floor open for visitors.