Michigan offering Becoming an Outdoors Woman opportunities

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is offering a variety of opportunities for women to learn new ways to enjoy the outdoors this July, through its Becoming an Outdoors-Woman (BOW) program. These hands-on workshops, designed primarily for those 18 and older, teach women the skills needed to take part in outdoor recreational activities.

July BOW programs are taking place in the Detroit, Grand Rapids/Kalamazoo, Flint/Saginaw and Ludington areas.

For registration forms and more information on the following BOW programs, visit the BOW website, call 517-241-2225 or email dnr-outdoors-woman@michigan.gov.

Beyond BOW Introduction to Archery
Tuesday, July 12, 6 to 9 p.m.
Hosted by Detroit Archers
5795 Drake Rd., West Bloomfield
Registration deadline – July 7

This workshop will cover safety, dominant eye, proper shooting form/technique, various archery equipment, maintenance and selection. The course will also provide for hands-on practice (indoor range) shooting a bow with assistance by instructors. No skill level is required, and all equipment will be provided. Girls 10 and older are welcome to attend but must be accompanied by an adult at all times. Cost for both adults and youth is $10 each. This class is first come-first served and is limited to 30 participants.

Beyond BOW Introduction to Handgun Shooting
Wednesday, July 13, 5 to 9 p.m.
Hosted by Caledonia Sportsman’s Club
10721 Coldwater Rd. SE, Alto
Registration deadline – July 7

This class will begin with basic firearm safety instruction and cover the fundamentals of handgun shooting, types of handguns and ammunition. Participants will then head to the shooting range, where they will shoot .22 handguns and get one-on-one coaching by a certified firearms instructor. All firearms and ammunition, eye and ear protection will be provided. Cost is $30 per person. Those interested in attending are encouraged to register early, as class size is limited.

Beyond BOW Introduction to Shotgun Shooting
Wednesday, July 13, 6 to 9 p.m.
Hosted by Tuscola County Conservation Club
1060 Gun Club Rd., Caro
Registration deadline – July 7

Featuring one-on-one instruction by certified firearms instructors, this shooting clinic is designed for beginners as well as those who would like to sharpen their shotgun skills. With an emphasis on firearm safety, participants will learn and practice shotgun shooting technique, determining dominant eye, proper stance and firearm fit. They can also practice their skills shooting trap. Attendees may bring their own shotgun, or one will be provided. Only 20-gauge ammunition will be provided; those bringing their own 12-gauge shotgun will need to provide their own ammunition. Eye and ear protection will also be available. Class size is limited, and both the registration form and payment must be received in order to attend.

Beyond BOW Bass Fishing 101
Saturday, July 16, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Hosted by Hunters Creek Club
675 E. Sutton Rd., Metamora
Registration deadline – July 7

Bass fishing made simple! Taught by champion bass anglers Doug Phillips III and Doug Phillips Jr., this informal but structured class will cover casting, knots, how to find fish, choosing the right artificial lure, hook selection, bank and boat safety, and a variety of different baits. After learning the how-to’s, participants will head out on Hunters Creek Club’s 60-acre Misch Lake – loaded with bass, pike and bluegill – for some hands-on practice. Participants can bring their own fishing rod, or one will be provided. Cost is $30 per person and includes lunch.

Beyond BOW Great Lakes Salmon Fishing
Saturday, July 16, 2 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Hosted by Ludington Charter Service – Raptor Charters
801 S. Washington, Ludington
Registration deadline ? July 7

No skill level is required for this six-hour charter fishing tour on Lake Michigan. Captain Glen Buehner and his crew will provide all of the equipment and show participants how to fish for and catch some of the most exciting game fish on the Great Lakes. All boats are inspected, piloted by a U.S. Coast Guard-licensed captain, and include all safety and navigational equipment and enclosed bathrooms. Fish cleaning will take place back at the marina, compliments of the captain and his crew, and recipes will be provided. A valid all-species fishing license is required. Cost is $125 per person. This very popular event fills up quickly; space is limited to 12 women (six per boat) and is first come-first served.

Beyond BOW Introduction to Kayaking
Sunday, July 17, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Instruction by Lee’s Adventure Sports of Portage
Meet at Ramona Park Beach, 8600 S. Sprinkle Rd., Portage
Registration deadline – July 14

The morning portion of this course is designed to be an introduction to the sport of kayaking for beginners or novice paddlers, while the afternoon segment will cover more advanced technique. Major land-based topics covered will include selection of proper safety equipment, clothing, additional safety items, orientation to kayak paddles and the various types of kayaks, their design features and the appropriate venues for each. On-the-water segments will cover proper entry into and exit of the kayak, proper paddle grip and introduction to the “total-body kayak stroke.” A full set of strokes suitable for beginners will be introduced, with appropriate practice activities and coaching. The day will wrap up with a relaxing paddle around the lake to give the participants a chance to apply their new skills.

Beyond BOW Family Cowboy Action Shoot
Saturday, July 23, noon to 4 p.m.
Hosted by The Rocky River Regulators at Detroit Sportsmen’s Congress
49800 Dequindre Rd., Utica
Registration deadline – July 14

Join the Rocky River Regulators in the cowboy action corral for an afternoon of family fun cowboy action shooting. The program will begin with a brief history of cowboy action shooting from its inception in 1981, followed by a lesson on safe firearm handling and range safety, and then a demonstration of cowboy action shooting with handguns, rifles and shotguns as used by cowboys 125 years ago. Cowboy and cowgirl costumes will be displayed. Hands-on shooting, with one-on-one assistance by certified instructors, for registered participants will follow. Eye and ear protection will be provided. The cost for adults 18 and over is $30 per person. Youngsters 12 and up (limit two per parent) are welcome to attend for free, but must be accompanied by their parent at all times. Preregistration is required, and class size is limited to 24 participants.

Beyond BOW Outdoor Photography for Beginners
Monday, July 25, 6 to 9 p.m.
Green Point Environmental Learning Center
48602 Gabriel Rd., Saginaw
Registration deadline – July 21

Award-winning outdoor writer/photographer Mike Gnatkowski will offer tips on how to take better outdoor photos, whether you want to capture close-ups of flowers or insects, wildlife or the spectacular sunsets or sunrises that Michigan is famous for. Gnatkowski will talk about basic camera functions, the importance of knowing your subject, capturing and utilizing light and the elements of composition. Then the class will head outdoors for a short hike along the nature trail at the Green Point Nature Center, where each student will take a few images to review and discuss back in the classroom. Participants must provide their own digital camera for this class. Cost is $10 per person.

BOW is a noncompetitive program for women, in which each individual is encouraged to learn