‘Fur and fish’ a big draw at annual Sportsman’s Classic – WCAX

ESSEX JUNCTION, Vt. -

It was a successful weekend for the 25th annual Yankee Sportsman’s Classic.  Thousands outdoor enthusiasts walked thought the doors at the Champlain Valley Fairgrounds for the 3-day event.  

If you love the outdoors, then the Sportsman’s Classic is a must see.  For three days every year, hundreds of vendors pack the fairgrounds in Essex Junction.  

“To get into the public, show our new products — how they work personally, and we do very well at shows like this,” said Ed Boll, a vendor with EBI.

Artwork, clothing, and equipment are for sale, along with anything else a hunter or fisherman might need heading into the woods.  Jessica Owens works for Pavillon Richer, a hunting lodge in Quebec.  ”Vermont is a close distance from our lodge so obviously it helps us, and this is a good show – a lot of people come,” she said.

Vermont’s new arena football team, the Vermont Bucks, which is about to take the field March 1st, also got into the action promoting the upcoming season.  ”Hunting, fishing, bucks — everything goes hand in hand,” said the team’s Ervin Bryson.

But show organizer John Laberge says it’s really focused on the next generation of outdoor enthusiasts.  ”We really have to bring the kids along because the state is getting older,” he said.

Kids at the show get to fish for trout in the pond, and shoot a targets with pellet guns, and even build bird houses with mom and dad.  ”Oh, I like the fur and all the fish,” said Jackson Fletcher, age 6.

Proceeds from a lot of attractions are given to Camp Ta-Kump-Ta,  which benefits kids with cancer.  That’s an organization 11 year-old Spencer White is is happy to support, when he’s not working the fishing reel at his dad’s booth.  ”You get to be out in nature and get away from all this technology and stuff,” he said.

Getting out into nature at a huge indoor exhibition.  

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