The Frederick Chapter Youth league meets the 2nd and 4th Sunday of each month. A program designed for kids ages 8 - 18, kids learn safe hunting practices, improve their shooting, and outdoor appreciation. It a free program and you not not need to be a member for your children to participle. WHEN DO WE MEET? The group meet the second and fourth Sunday of the month.
WHERE DO WE MEET? At the Frederick Chapter Izaak Walton League of America on 4719 Reels Mill Road, Frederick MD 21704 12pm - 4 p.m..
INTERESTED IN JOINING? You can get more information by contacting our Youth Director Ben Kelkye at firstname.lastname@example.org or call him at 240-490-7165.
THE MARYLAND YOUTH HUNTER Education Challenge was held at the Potomac Fish and Game Club in Williamsport on June 16 and 17. Eighty-four young athletes from across Maryland participated, with 12 teams of five participants each and 24 others competing as individuals.
The YHEC program is exclusively for hunter education course graduates up to age 18. It is a comprehensive hunter-training program developed by the National Rifle Association to help young hunters develop safe hunting skills. Because the events are conducted in simulated hunting conditions, YHEC provides the best test of a young hunter’s skills, short of an actual situation afield. The competition is divided into four responsibility events and four shooting skills events. The responsibility events include wildlife identification, orienteering, hunter responsibility exam and the hunter safety trail. The shooting events include archery, small bore rifle, five-stand shotgun and traditional muzzleloading.
The event proved to be the most successful in the history of the Frederick Chapter of the Izaak Walton League of America.
The IWLA had 16 participants representing Frederick County at the event. They were teamed by ages into one senior team and two junior teams, with one alternate participating as an individual.
The Frederick J1 team members — Josiah Freese, Cameron Moneypenny, Nathaniel Neuland, Dayna Valek and Spencer Becker — won first-place team standings with their combined score of 7,037, a club record for a junior team. I am the proud coach of this outstanding team.
The Frederick J2 team members — Justin McAfee, PJ Hinch, Charles Buckmeier, Joel Freese and Matthew Bradfield — won the coveted Team Sportsmanship Award and placed fourth in the overall competition with a team score of 5,589. In addition, Frederick J2 Coach Paul Hinch was awarded the Maryland YHEC Coach of the Year, as selected by the YHEC board of directors at the event.
The Frederick senior team coach is Mark Freese. Team members Lucas Howell, Gabrielle Freese, Wyatt Farmer, Joey Gallo and Garrett Buckmeier placed a respectable fourth in the senior category, with a combined score of 7,143.
The Frederick IWLA YHEC coaches work together to teach skills to all of our youth participants. I would like to acknowledge the efforts of Coach Freese, our orienteering and wildlife identification guru. Each of the Frederick IWLA teams earned the highest scores in these categories due to his expertise and the practical exercises he developed for our participants.
The most notable achievements took place in the category of the Overall Individual Junior Scores. Josiah Freese, Cameron Moneypenny and Justin McAfee won first, second and third place, respectively. “Having the top three individual scores from our chapter is a first in the club’s history,” said Ben Kelkye, the Frederick IWLA’s Youth Program director and head coach. “All the young men and women have worked hard as a team and as individuals, I couldn’t be prouder.”
Eight-year-old Emma Hafner participated as an alternate for Frederick J2, with an individual score of 567. This was Emma’s first YHEC competition, and I congratulate Emma for her success as the youngest participant in the event.
Trophies and ribbons were awarded in team and individual categories. In addition, the highest individual score in the senior division was presented with a new .270 hunting rifle and a new 12gauge shotgun was presented in the junior division.
The YHEC event concluded on Father’s Day with the presentation of the awards. Father’s Day is an appropriate occasion to coincide with the YHEC event. The training for the YHEC event is a wonderful opportunity for positive father/son and father/daughter interactions. Jeff McAfee was proud to see his 14-year-old son, Justin, do so well at his first YHEC competition. “This has been the best Father’s Day ever,” McAfee said at the event.
Thirteen-year-old Cameron Moneypenny has been participating in YHEC events for four years. “Our success has been made possible through the leadership and dedication of Coach Ben (Kelkye), the other coaches and adults,” Moneypenny said. “Most of all, I want to thank my father. I personally couldn’t have done this without my dad and it gave me a unique opportunity to share something with him. Through this program I have gained self confidence, knowledge of conservation in the outdoors, and a fun thing to do with my dad and my friends.”
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The Frederick Chapter of the Izaak Walton League of America is a non-profit 501c(3) located at 4719 Reels Mill Road, Frederick, MD 21701. Our facility is located on more than 50 acres of land of which 49 is protected in perpetuity with an environmental easement managed by the Maryland Environmental Trust.