If you aren't a hunter there is still a way to enjoy the bounty of the local area's wild game.
A considerable array of game is part of the hunting activities around Prince George and there are also abundant recipes for preparing these organic meats, exotic even to many who live amongst these prized animals.
The 20th annual Spruce City Wildlife Association wild game banquet is coming soon. It is always a hot ticket for the hot entres and appetizers from the local forest.
Moose and deer meat is a staple on the banquet table, but this event is unique for also sourcing rare game, all legally procured and safely handled from the forest to the plate.
"It is all donated from our members, from their hunting activities," said Patty Gerhardi, a SCWA spokeswoman. She is helping co-ordinate the event, which is going to provide a lot of fundraising opportunities as well.
"The Civic Centre does all the food preparation, so we don't have to worry about that, we just provide the wild game, we make some suggestions about this and that, but they prepare the dishes," said Uwe Finger, another longtime member of the group. He added that conventional meals were also available, including vegetarian dishes. The banquet was a celebration of the great local outdoors, so all were welcome.
"Healthy wildlife populations are vitally important for all kinds of reasons, even for people who may not consider themselves conservationists. You can be a hunter and not be a conservationist, but we [SCWA members] are both," said Jim Glaicar, a member for less than a year but a longtime outdoors enthusiast who was previously active in the Wild Sheep Society of B.C. "It is an integral part of our city and our northern B.C. culture... and I'm sensing a renewed feeling of appreciation for what we have here, in our local great outdoors."
"We don't want to be just a stationary club involved in physical things, we can take the club in all kinds of directions and promote activities as well," said Erich Franz, who has been a member for many years, coming to the association through its partner group the Polar Coachmen Fly Fishers. Other loosely associated groups include the P.G. Trappers Association, P.G. Riverboat Association, P.G Back Country Recreation group, North Central Guide Outfitters Association, and others.
The SCWA is also a direct local affiliate of the B.C. Wildlife Federation.
There are many ways of winning prizes and taking home auction items from the wild game banquet. The centrepiece of the night will be a handmade cedar strip canoe going home with someone who attends the banquet.
The dinner, dance and fundraiser takes place March 9 at the Civic Centre. Some of the confirmed menu items include: moose, buffalo, elk, caribou, mule deer, snow goose, sandhill crane, octopus, lynx, black bear, beaver and salmon.
Tickets are $40 available at Northern Hardware, Pineview General Store, Nechako Outdoors, Bon Voyage Sports or call Patti Gerhardi at 250-961-9667.
Proceeds support initiatives like:
- Maintenance of the SCWA clubhouse (used by many conservation clubs);
- Operation of the trout hatchery (the hatchery and clubhouse share the prominent log building on River Road);
- Ferguson Lake urban fishery enhancement project;
- Shane Lake urban fishery enhancement project;
- Kids Fishing Pool (operational at BC Rivers Day, Summerfest and family fishing events)