JAKES event was a time for fun and education

| July 17, 2017

COSHOCTON – The annual J.A.K.E.S (Juniors Acquiring Knowledge, Ethics, Sportsmanship) was held on Saturday, July 15 at the Coshocton County Sportsmen’s Club. The event is sponsored by the National Wild Turkey Federation and is put on by a local committee of 11 people.

Dwaine Scheetz, event coordinator, said, “This is a learning day. We teach the youth how to safely handle air rifles, shotguns, .22s and bows. After lunch, Deputy Stone is bringing the canine unit out and the SWAT vehicle will also be here.” He also said that Andy Hershner, from Woodbury, brought a display of animal pelts and skulls to show the youth. “We also give each participant a slate call for calling turkeys and we instruct them on how to use it.”

“We applied for the Step Outside Grant and we got it this year. It’s from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources and we used it for today, plus a lot of donations from local businesses,” said Scheetz. The committee is very thankful for the support of local businesses, both for the JAKES event and their banquet each spring. “Coshocton County has one of the largest banquets every year. We usually have about 300 people attend and local businesses always help us when we need anything.”

Kamryn McGinnis (10), Kolton Arnold (11) and Sierra Cross (10) were the first group to try their hand at archery. After receiving safety instructions, they were allowed to shoot at large round targets. A committee member also brought his own targets, so they could also shoot at turkeys, a bear, a raccoon and a dinosaur.

This is McGinnis’s first JAKES event and she really enjoys hunting with a shotgun and hopes to use a bow soon. She has gone deer hunting and, after her dad shot a turkey this year, she hopes to try turkey hunting, too. Arnold said archery is his favorite and he has attended JAKES events before. His grandpa takes him hunting and he said that it takes a lot of practice to actually shoot an animal. Cross said she doesn’t really want to hunt anything – she just wants to get really good with her bow and likes shooting at the round targets the best.

Safety was stressed at each part of the event. Youth wore eye and ear protection, along with arm guards. Instructors were close to each participant and offered advice for safety and hunting tips.

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