President — Aaron Hitchcock, 9331 Sister Lane, Mulberry, AR 72947; 479-997-5361;
Vice President — Charlie Bass, 6755 Bethesda Lane, Batesville, AR 72501; 870-698-1154;
Secretary/Treasurer — Gary Gray, PO Box 493, Arkadelphia, AR 71923; 870-403-2469;
NTA Director — Mike Fischer, 13823 Masoner Road, Lonsdale, AR 72087; 501-939-2325
Editor — Gary Helms, 1092 Vanderbilt Rd., Texarkana, AR 71854; 870-772-3834; TrapperGWH@aol.com
• Individual membership including subscription to Trapper & Predator Caller — $22
• Family membership with subscription — $27
Complete membership application on first page of association section and send dues to:
PO Box 493
Arkadelphia, AR 71923
Well trapping season is over and the fur sale is past. There was a lot of fur and the prices were better than expected. I hope everyone was happy with the prices. That’s my luck, I can’t trap and the prices are up, maybe next year. The 2013 fur sale started slow as usual but finished well. Heath Shaw volunteered to coordinate the fur sale again in 2014.
I hope a lot of you will be attending the N.T.A. convention on August 1st – 4th in Lima Ohio. Mike Fischer is our N.T.A. representative and will be attending the business meetings there on Tuesday and Wednesday, before the convention starts on Thursday. The next time you see Mike give him a good pat on the back and tell him good job and thanks. Attending these functions takes him away from home and his job. Thanks Mike for all you do.
The Arkansas Trappers convention will be held at Petite Jean State Park on September 6th and 7th. Mike Fischer is this year’s convention coordinator. I hope we have a large turnout like we did last year, Mike does a good job with every aspect from demos to kids’ activities.
The A.T.A. workshop will be held October 25th – 27th at camp Clearfork with Aaron Hitchcock as coordinator.
The District 8 convention held at Fordyce Arkansas had over 100 people in attendance. People came from Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, and Oklahoma. There were demos on fur handling and trapping from muskrats to bobcats. Tim Ross has done a good job please let him know that you appreciate all his hard work. Thanks Tim for all you have done.
District 5 had over 30 people at their last meeting. I didn’t get much information about their meeting other than their numbers are growing.
District 1 River Valley chapter is having a meeting in August on the 15th. We are making plans for a booth in the Crawford county fair and other activities.
Since the Arkansas Trappers Association has gone to Districts in 2012, our membership has grown from around 400 to over 600 active members. I believe the change will continue to be good for the ATA. There will be rough spots in the road ahead, as with anything that is growing, but with the continued support of all, we will continue to grow.
Glad I didn’t have much to write about.
Till next time. Hoping your traps are full. — Aaron Hitchcock
Editor’s Report – Summer has officially arrived in Arkansas! We probably won’t get much relief for the next two or three months, but as I write this report on July 1st, this has to be the nicest and coolest July day in my lifetime! The expected high today is only 84 degrees! I hope y’all were able to get out and enjoy it, as we’ll likely never have it happen again. Although, with the weather getting crazier every year, who knows?
Our State convention will be September 6th and 7th this year at Petit Jean State Park near Morrilton. Friday night will start off the weekend with a meal at 6:30 pm. The main course, side dishes and drink are supplied, just bring your appetite. A Board of Directors meeting will be held directly afterwards. All day Saturday you can look forward to: Trapping Demonstrations, Kids and Ladies Activities, Vendors, Tailgaters, Potluck Lunch, 2012 General Business Meeting, Awards Ceremony and Auction. Mather Lodge reopened last year after extensive renovation. All 24 guest rooms and other facilities at the lodge are now open. There are also 33 cabins and 125 campsites available for rent. Call 1-800-264-2462 for lodge and cabin reservations, 501-727-5441 for campground reservations. Dardanelle, Russellville and Morrilton may have hotel rooms available. District 5 is hosting the convention this year. For more information contact Convention Coordinator Mike Fischer @ 501-939-2325.
District meetings are being held Statewide. Our District plan states that at least two District meetings will be held each year. One District meeting no more than 30 days prior to the ATA Spring Directors meeting and another District meeting no more than 30 days prior to the ATA Fall Convention Directors meeting. Additional meetings will be held at the discretion of the District Directors. Each District should be holding a meeting sometime in August. Please try to attend these meetings to let your District Rep. know what concerns you have and issues you’d like to have brought up before the Board. This is YOUR ATA and this is your chance to have your voice heard. Contact your District Rep. and find out when your next meeting is. Here is a list of current District Representatives: District 1 – Wayne Watson, Phone: 479-283-7004, Benton, Boone, Carroll, Crawford, Franklin, Johnson, Madison, Newton, Pope, Washington Counties. District 2 – Charlie Bass, 870-698-1154, Baxter, Cleburne, Fulton, Independence, Izard, Marion, Searcy, Sharp, Stone, Van Buren Counties. District 3 – Alex Lane, 870-219-0852, Clay, Craighead, Greene, Jackson, Lawrence, Mississippi, Poinsett, Randolph Counties. District 4 – Sterlen Kirschman, 501-760-7635, Garland, Logan, Montgomery, Polk, Scott, Sebastian, Yell Counties. District 5 – Heath Shaw, 501-889-4619, Conway, Faulkner, Lonoke, Perry, Pulaski, Saline, White Counties. District 6 – Open, Crittenden, Cross, Lee, Monroe, Phillips, Prairie, St. Francis, Woodruff Counties. District 7 – Brad Townsend, 870-703-2728, Hempstead, Howard, Lafayette, Little River, Miller, Pike, Sevier Counties. District 8 – Tim Ross, 870-678-2874, Calhoun, Clark, Columbia, Dallas, Grant, Hot Spring, Nevada, Ouachita, Union Counties. District 9 – Open, Arkansas, Ashley, Bradley, Chicot, Cleveland, Desha, Drew, Jefferson, Lincoln Counties. As you can see, Districts 6 and 9 are in need of a District Representative. If you live in either of those Districts and would like to volunteer for the position, or know someone that would make a good Rep., contact Aaron Hitchcock @ 479-997-5361. We want to see this part of the State represented and included equally with the rest of the State! At this time, I only know of two meetings so far. District 1 has a meeting scheduled on August 10th at The Catfish Hole in Alma from Noon till 4pm and District 7 has one tentatively set for August 24th at Rick Evans Grandview Prairie WMA starting at 6pm.
The ATA’s first ever Spring convention (at least since I’ve been a member) was held on May 18th at the Fordyce Civic center. I never received the final count, but there was a good turnout for this event. A BIG Thank You goes out to Tim and Mary Ross and District 8 for hosting the convention! Tim had 21 demos scheduled throughout the day in multiple locations around the facility by trappers from Arkansas, Texas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Mississippi. If you were there and didn’t learn something new, it’s your own fault! There were all sorts of vendors, a silent auction, door prizes, an auction, and plate lunches for sale, all inside an air conditioned building! There’s a ton of planning and hard work that goes into one of these, and they all did an excellent job! Another BIG Thank You goes to all of the demonstrators and vendors for making the trip, and helping make this convention a success! These types of places are located all over our State. If you know of a great facility for a future convention, let your District Rep. know so we can get something planned! Any time you can get a bunch of trappers and their families together, a good time is sure to be had by all!
There are plans in the works to have a BIG Fall convention next year in the Southwest part of the State. Mississippi and Louisiana trappers approached me at our Spring convention with the idea of having a Multi-State convention in the Texarkana area. The NTA heard about the idea, and wants to make it a Southeast Regional event next year in September. There are lots of details to work out, and I’ll keep you informed here as things develop.
Two more items for your calendar are the 2013 Trappers Workshop October 25th through the 27th, and the 2014 Fur Sale on February 15th. I’ll list the information for these events in upcoming issues of this magazine. you can also find info on all of our upcoming events on the website @ www.arkansastrappers.org. For additional info, call your District Representative.
The Arkansas Trappers Association is the first and oldest Statewide trappers association in Arkansas. We’ve been here since 1975.
The Arkansas Trappers Association (ATA) is made up of dedicated men and women who promote wildlife management through regulated trapping. The ATA actively promotes using the safest and most efficient traps through trapper education. The ATA has a working relationship with the Arkansas Game & Fish Commission in the setting of regulations that pertain to trapping. Our members are modern trappers devoted to improving the image and practice of trapping through workshops, seminars, and demonstrations that promote ethical trapping practices and support modern wildlife management and conservation. The ATA sponsors a number of events each year to improve leadership and communication skills among its members, and frequently attends outdoor shows and schools to teach others about responsible conservation and wildlife management. Interested in joining the ATA? We’d love to sign you up and welcome you into our family!
Please take care of yourselves in this Summer heat. I want to see all of you at the convention in September! Until next time! — Gary Helms