Shake off the winter doldrums this weekend at the 78th annual Eastern Maine Sportsmen’s Show at the University of Maine field house in Orono. The BDN Outdoors — myself and fellow writer John Holyoke — will be there all weekend manning our booth, attending presentations and demonstrations, chatting with other outdoorsy people, buying gear and artwork we don’t need but must have, and eating lots of good food.
The show — which includes dozens of outdoor vendors, raffles and demonstrations — is running for three days:
- 5-9 p.m. Friday, March 11
- 9 a.m.-8 p.m. Saturday, March 12
- 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Sunday, March 13
On Sunday, I’ll be giving a presentation about hiking in Maine at noon in a fieldhouse classroom. I’d love for you to be there. Titled “Hiking Lessons Learned the Hard Way,” the talk will include a powerpoint presentation of video clips, photos and helpful hiking tips. I’ll also be happy to answer any questions, however off topic, about outdoor recreation in Maine and my work at the BDN in general.
“Hiking Lessons Learned the Hard Way” will be all about things I’ve learned on the trail during the past four and a half years I’ve been writing and filming my “1-minute hike” series. Each week, I try to explore a different trail in Maine, which means I’ve explored more than 200 trails so far. Those mini adventures have provided many of opportunities for me to make mistakes and learn from them.
Some of my stories, I believe, will be entertaining — comical even. Others will be more serious. My goal is for you to walk away having learned a thing or two about Maine trails and what to expect.
My dog, Oreo, will not be at the presentation. That’s one mistake I’d rather not make. Oreo is not good with new people, and he’s especially nervous around crowds. He’ll have to be there in spirit, as well as in photos and videos. Knowing your limits (and your dog’s limits) is one of the many lessons I’ll be discussing.
I also promise a new, never-before-published blooper compilation at the presentation.
And if you want to hang around after the talk, I’d be happy to chat with you about Maine hiking trails and offer some ideas based on where you live or what types of adventures you’re looking for. Though I may need to take your contact information and give it some thought.
If you’re not the type to sit for a presentation, I understand. But you really should consider stopping by the big show. If you’ve never been, you might be surprised. It’s huge, and it’s filled with energy. There are a lot of raffles to enter for exciting outdoor gear and trips (some of them free!), and the demonstrations are never dull — think amazing dog tricks, live owls and tales by experienced Maine registered guides.
Just make sure you look for the BDN Outdoor booth. We offer free entries to win a drift boat fishing trip with Maine registered guide Dan Legere of the Moosehead area. We’ll also be giving out our spring edition of the BDN Maine Outdoors magazine, free, hot off the press… and candy. And smiles.
We’d like to meet you, and we’d especially like for you to give us a piece of your mind. We want to know what you want to read about. What should the BDN Outdoors be writing about? What do you want to hear about? What do you want to see? Who would you like to meet through our pages, photos and videos? Some of the best stories we’ve ever written come from ideas provided by BDN readers, and the show is always a perfect opportunity for John and I to gather those ideas.
No pressure, though. Just come say hi.
For more information about this year’s show, visit conservationassociation.org.