Washington Trappers Association October 2009 Report

President — Bruce Vandervort, 5338 US Hwy 101, Humptulips, WA 98552; phone: 360-288-2466; e-mail: brucevandervort@hotmail.com

Vice President West — John Consolini, 17030 Marmount ST SE, Monroe WA 98272; e-mail: itrap4you@yahoo.com

Vice President East
­— George Brady, P.O. Box 535, Pateros, WA 98846; phone: 509-923-2326;   e-mail: cascadeb@televar.com

Executive Secretary — Ralph Dobson, 13723 Heatherwood Dr., Mill Creek, WA 98012;
phone: 425-530-2124; e-mail: ralph.dobson@verizon.com

Treasurer — BJ Thornily; 63 Redmond Rd., Republic, WA 99166; phone: 509-775-2936;
e-mail: bobbiemike@yahoo.com

NTA Director — Bob Maier, 38 Francis Dr., Walla Walla, WA 99362; phone: 509-529-9568; e-mail: bob_maier@hotmail.com

Membership options:
• Individual membership including subscription to The Trapper & Predator Caller — $30
• Junior (under 18) with subscription to The Trapper & Predator Caller — $15.50
• Associate (non-trapper) including subscription to The Trapper & Predator Caller— $15.50
• Senior Citizen (over 70) including subscription to The Trapper & Predator Caller — $10.50
• Lifetime membership — $250
• Lifetimer subscription to The Trapper Predator Caller — $10.50

Dues entitles members to all newsletters, meeting notices, discount entry to workshops and the annual rendezvous. All monies are used to protect your right to trap.

Complete membership application on first page of
association section and send dues to:
(A non-profit organization.)
P.O. Box 12669
Mill Creek, WA 98082


First of all, let me apologize for not having a report in last month. There wasn’t much to report except last minute information about the rendezvous and I knew it would not reach you in time anyway.

If you missed the rendezvous, you missed a really good time. Many told me it was the best rendezvous we have had in a few years. I want to commend Eric Degman, our new rendezvous coordinator for a job well done. Eric came in with a fresh perspective and a lot of new ideas. He has agreed to take the job again next year so if you missed, you better make time next year. Eric had a lot of games for the kids and activities for non-trapping spouses so it really is a family event. We had some real good auction items this year and as a result it looks like we might be pretty good financially, not overflowing with money but enough to get us through another year. Thank you all for that. We have a tentative date of late August at Cashmere again for next year.

Now is the time when I thank everyone that helped make this a great rendezvous. The easy ones are people like Dale Holland who has been supplying our food for the last few years. Sharon Dobson who makes sure we are all fed. Tammy Rice not only makes a beautiful quilt for the auction every year, she was there a day before the rendezvous to help Sharon set up the kitchen. Ralph Dobson, our Executive Secretary has really streamlined check in and with a few more ideas for next year, it will be even easier.

No one likes paperwork or standing in line so the less the better. It occurs to me though that no matter how many names I mention I’ll forget someone. That is because we have so many who give and help out and are not so easily noticed. Like the people that bid on items at the auction that don’t need the stuff anyway. How about a guy that bids $200 for a barrel of cold beer to share with the crowd and he doesn’t even drink beer himself. That’s the kind of selfless donation to the Association I’m talking about. For all of you that buy raffle tickets, spend money that goes to the association for something you could really do without or just stick around to set up chairs or sweep the floor at the end you have my heartfelt thanks.

We inducted George Sovie and Alan Worrell into the hall of fame. For many years George was the association. He is still active and I don’t know what we would do without him. Alan goes way back, but at least to me he seems the same as the first time I met him. I’m counting on him being there for a lot of years to come. A couple of real deserving inductees. We’re lucky to have them.
Besides the good demos, great food and company of good friends, we had a few other really encouraging things happen both for the Association and trapping in general.

George Brady laid out the plan of action for our new strategy to get a change in the trapping laws. I don’t think I will say anymore here in the T&PC for fear of spying eyes, but suffice to say I and everyone that has heard it is encouraged.

The legislative committee, if everything goes right, will start incurring some expenses for travel. This won’t be the entire committee, but mainly just a couple of people. In order to ease the burden on the few, I would like to encourage you to send in an additional donations to be used for expenses of the legislative committee. We set a few dollars aside in our budget for this, but there should be more. Any donation will be appreciated in our effort to get trapping back more like we used to know it. Send donations to Bobbie and indicate on your check that it is for the legislative committee expenses.

Another problem that has plagued us is the Web site. There may be light at the end of the tunnel on this. As you know, I’ve been trying to get this going for a few years and it just seems to be stalled. A new member has offered to make it happen and he is a professional Web site designer. He does stuff so far over my head I don’t have a clue. We should have an interactive talk forum so you will be able keep up on what’s happening with the Association in a more timely fashion besides some friendly talk. He is putting together a Web site far better then I had hoped for and he has a target date for it to be up and running by November. Almost seems too good to be true.
I also received a tentative offer of an auctioneer to help out with the auction. That would be a blessing.

I was asked by a member why we hold a members only raffle. The person thought we should be selling to the public also. A legitimate question and the answer is if we hold a members only raffle, we do not have to keep records or report to the gambling commission. It just saves us a lot of headaches by limiting it to members only.

I think I’ll sign off there. I’m off to the Puyallup Fair next week. Tell you about it next month.

— Bruce Vandervort


Well, another month has come and gone and if you missed this year’s Rendezvous, what can I say but you missed a real good one. This was our 40th Anniversary. WSTA was formed by a small group of trappers in Skagit County in September 1967 and our first rendezvous was held in 1969.

Next year’s Rendezvous, I think, is going to be better yet with next year being our 200 years of Fur Trapping in Washington State. You need to start planning to go to this one now.

The turn out this year seemed to be higher than last year’s. We had around 30 new people at our trapper training class and our nuisance wildlife training class. This year we had quite a bit for all members and their families. Eric Degman put together a great program with something for everybody. He had games for the children and some pretty good prizes too. He had things for the ladies, a nice trip for everybody over to the power dam with a guided tour guide. We had several demos from beaver to nutria trapping, skull preparation, proper knife sharpening, live beaver and otter trapping, predator calling and even a demo on what to do with your fur these days at these low prices. The demo was put on by Pam Hefley and she did an outstanding job.

Lunch and dinner were prepared by the ladies and there was some real good food there. We held our live auction and we had some great items that were donated by stores and vendors. Of course, after the auction we all went outside and sat by a fire where we roosted some sausages and had s’mores. The camaraderie was great throughout the three day event.

We gave out two “Hall of Fame” Awards this year. The first went to Alan Worrell. Alan is one of our founding fathers that formed our association. Alan has for as far back I can remember always worked to keep this association alive. Alan has always stepped up to the plate and has held several positions in the association. He has held office of the President and several others at the same time. Like Fred Lawrence said, “There is nobody that deserves this award more than Alan.”

The second Hall of Fame award went to George Sovie. It was too bad that George couldn’t make it this year. George Sovie, I think, is one of the most outstanding guys that I know that has worked tirelessly for the trapper. George is a fur buyer, trap supplier and has done more than anybody else I can remember all in the name of trapping. George held the president position I think for 10 or 15 years. George got us into our local Puyallup Fair where we have had a Trappers Booth for 33 years now.

He has always gone way out of his way to help a young trapper. I remember once being at his shop when a father and his young trapping son came in and the young trapper had one muskrat pelt that he wanted to sell to George the fur buyer. The pelt was worth maybe 50 cents and George asked the young boy what he thought it was worth and the boy said he thought it was worth $2. George said that’s about right and gave him the $2. George was picked for this award because he deserved it for all of the years of hard work he has done for the trappers and the association. He was there from almost the beginning of the association and has worked tirelessly for our needs. I had the pleasure of giving him this award at his home. He is an outstanding person.

It was great to see Fred Lawrence there because he couldn’t make it last year and he was one of the recipients of the Hall of Fame award last year. For you that don’t know who Fred is, he was our first elected President back in 1973 and took the association statewide to where we are today.

We owe Fred a world of gratitude for what he has done. He has held several positions in the association and has put together some of the great programs for our rendezvous up until last year.

Fred is an outstanding guy and if you haven’t had the pleasure in meeting him; please do.
The general awards were given out to three people this year. First was; Ken Koski for his outstanding support for WSTA. He received the “Outstanding Supporter of the Year” Award.

Ken has done an outstanding job over the years with the association. Ken went out and made contact so we can award Miss Rodeo every year with some type of Fur garment. He always donates to the auction and his one item brings in a couple hundred dollars always.

The second award went to; Bobbie Thorniley, for her outstanding work that she has done not just this year, but from years of hard work. She received the “Public Relations” Award. She couldn’t make it this year so her husband accepted the award on her behalf. She is our bookkeeper and represents WSTA at all of the meetings including the Wildlife Commission.

The third award went to our modest President Bruce Vandervort. Bruce has worked very hard this year and received the “Trapper of the Year” Award. He deserved this award because of his outstanding hard work that he has done for WSTA this past year. If you haven’t meet Bruce, you need to sit down with him. He is one of the most interesting and educated persons that I have come to know. He doesn’t think he can fill his predecessors shoes, but he is already leaving a big mark with the association. Bruce has held several positions so far with one of them being our representative with the NTA and now our President. Bruce and I are on the Wildlife Conflict Stakeholders Committee for the association with the Department of fish and Wildlife and I will tell you, he is doing an outstanding job representing the association and your interest.

There is so much credit that needs to be given to so many people and I want to thank everybody that works on the behalf of the association. George Brady talked about the Legislative Committee that he chairs on what they are planning for this up and coming section. To learn more about what we are doing you will have to be a member and contact you County or Regional Representative for the details.

We also had some bad news given to us. We lost two more of our trapping members. I’ll get this information and post it next month.

I urge all of the Washington State license fur trappers that are not members to join in with us and support the association that is fighting to make the changes you want. Until next month, take care.

— John R Consolini

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