Hunt. Fish. Feed
There are many ways to give back to the community or show people your appreciation, but as sportsmen we have a unique ability to also share the success of the harvest. “Hunt. Fish. Feed” was created by Sportsman Channel as an outreach program to provide free meals across the country by utilizing wild game and fish donated by outdoorsmen. This year, the event was held on the Great Lakes Naval Base in the northern Chicago area to show our appreciation to the military and their families. This is a small way we can all say thank you for the sacrifices they have made and provide a delicious home cooked meal at no cost.
Scott Leysath, host of the TV Show The Sporting Chef, was on-site preparing freshly caught wild salmon for nearly 1,000 people. The salmon was donated by the Geoffrey Morris Memorial Fishing Tournament & USO. Scott truly did an amazing job getting all the volunteers organized, preparing the food, and a delicious meal served. I was lucky enough to help out at the event which was located out under tents among rides, games, and a carnival like atmosphere for the families. After we were done serving everyone I got a chance to sit down and mingle with many of the people and was blown away by there deep appreciation for what we had done. One young man explained how he recently moved to the Illinois area but hadn’t had any luck fishing so far so he was thrilled about a meal of fresh salmon. There were also tons of young children around enjoying the food, weather, and atmosphere.
Events like this are extremely important not only to help people in need and to show our appreciation, but to open people’s eyes to the delicious opportunities hunting and fishing can offer their families. Having a chef like Scott prepare the food everything tastes amazing, but it’s really important to expose some of the young kids or families who may have never had the opportunity to eat wild game in the past. Out of the 1,000 people who were fed I’m sure there were a few families who walked away not only happy about the meal, but trying to come up with new ways to get their families involved in the outdoors. With that, it’s a win-win anyway you look at it. We got to thank the troops and their families for everything they’ve done and may create a few more outdoorsmen or women in the process.
Melissa Bachman is an incredibly hardcore and intense hunter – perhaps one of the more passionate hunters you will ever meet.