Ottawa Sportsmen's Club News

Volume No. 2003, Issue No. 1, 6 Jan 2003

Carole Williams, Club Reporter

News and Dues Letter

"I Give My Pledge As An American"
Over sixty years ago, a handful of men calling themselves the Wolverine Sportsmen's Club and Laird Conservation Club saw the need for concern as to the future of our forests, minerals, waters and wildlife. They eventually combined efforts and so the Ottawa Sportsmen's Club was born. Few of our founders are left to carry on the pledge to faithfully save our natural resources from misuse and mismanagement, but the impact those men have had on our vigilance in these matters and upon our established respect as the Ottawa Sportsmen's Club has been monumental.

From its humble beginning in the late 1930's, the Ottawa Sportsmen's Club has continued to prosper and grow. This is attributable in part to the deep belief our members have continued to foster in our pledge, but it is also born out of concern for our right as Americans to hunt in our forests and to fish from our waters. It's about the right to own and bear arms and to have a say in the laws that govern us as sportsmen and sportswomen.

As of this writing, our membership has reached 401. Each of you who receive this newsletter is a very integral part of that number and it is critically important that you continue to support our organization through your membership and through encouraging others to also join us. Our strength comes collectively from all, and even just one member who chooses not to renew his dues will have a negative impact on the momentum we have been able to achieve and maintain.

The year 2003 will see many challenges for us as a sportsmen's organization. We continue to be inundated with more and more restrictive legislation that governs how we enjoy our outdoor sports activities. The restrictions, however, will not reach to our wallets as we pay more for our hunting, fishing, and trapping licenses, our campground fees, our ORV stickers and our trail permits.

Bear baiting on federal land has an uncertain future. Chronic Wasting Disease is an issue that must be dealt with. So is the wolf population that has been dining on the deer herd. Complaints of "no deer" were rampant this year in this part of the U.P. and a call has been heard in many camps to boycott the purchase of hunting licenses next year. "Hit 'em in the pocketbook where it hurts" seems to be the rallying cry. Bureaucracy, however, generally manages to feed upon itself and boycotting license purchases would only likely result in increased fees.

No doubt that the "Beltway Sniper" episode will bring back a call for gun control, which has only temporarily been on the back burner since the heinous acts of terrorism became televised fodder on September 11, 2001. Already, the hard fought for CCW permits are being regulated so that concealed weapons may not be carried in certain areas of our state. And with a new governor who wavered throughout her campaign, it remains to be seen which side of the fence she will finally land on, anti or pro-gun legislation.

So where do we as individual members of the Ottawa Sportsmen's Club come into play? SUPPORT! All of us may not be able to dig in with volunteerism or to attend meetings, but if we can dig into our pockets and come up with $25.00 for our membership dues, we will have done a great deal to continue our efforts on behalf of sportsmen and the generation of sportsmen to follow.

News For Those Away From Home
The year 2002 saw us busy with many projects and events. We continued our youth programs, hosting a Hunter Safety Class, provided school library funding and classroom subscriptions to "Tracks" magazine, awarded scholarships to two graduating seniors, hosted our week long Junior Shooting Sports Day Camp, and funded an O.S.C. Junior Pistol Team that took many honors individually and collectively in the National Rifle Association competition last summer. In addition, we hosted winter field studies for groups of area elementary students in conjunction with the Western Upper Peninsula Center For Science, Mathematics and Environmental Education and will do so again this year. We also helped to send a young lady from Baraga Area Schools to Washington D.C. where she participated in a Youth In Government Program as Michigan's Youth Lieutenant Governor.

A major undertaking was the new roofing project for the indoor pistol range, completed after many battles with the heat and bugs. The guys are now working on the inside of the building and Celotex has recently donated thousands of dollars worth of tile so that a new ceiling can be installed. We are also in the process of working on a mechanized pistol target apparatus that will eliminate the need to hand set targets during shoots. Pete Massie of Massie Manufacturing has been extremely generous in meeting our needs when it comes to new targets at which to shoot.

The clubhouse-caulking project was also completed for all but the storage room area, which needed to be cleaned and reorganized before caulking it could be started. Much clean-up work was also done at the O.S.C. Courtney Lake Campground, with more picnic tables and fire rings installed. Improvements were also made in the clubhouse kitchen area.

Two new events were added to our regular shooting programs. Thanks to the hard work and dedication of Jon & Sandy Henkel, we now host a Black Powder Shoot the first Saturday in February through May. This daylong "fun" event has generated a lot of enthusiasm among our muzzle-loading aficionados. And Thursday nights, May through September, has seen the addition of "Action Pistol" shooting, thanks to the efforts of Jack James. These folks, all relatively new members, have not hesitated to get involved with club activities.

We treated ourselves to a Valentine's Party, thanks to President Filpus who acted as chief cook and bottle washer while over 80 members enjoyed a prime rib dinner and danced the night away. Attendance was at an all time high at our Annual Family Picnic in August and the 41st Annual Turkey Shoot exceeded all expectations of success thanks to the generosity of our local merchants.

Our Gun & Knife Show was a huge success in spite of the need to reschedule it because of inclement weather and the Wild Game Feed saw a long line of people anticipating a tasty repast of specially prepared venison, elk, bear, and pheasant donated by our members. At least 100 people visited the O.S.C. during our annual Sight-In Days November 12th through the 14th and the 3rd Annual Booyaw was also very well attended by over 75 members and guests on December 7th.

We now have a club brochure, which is mailed to all new members along with their first membership card and a special letter of welcome. Gift certificates for memberships are also now available, as are club jackets and other OSC apparel. Space has been doubled at the club's Website,, so as to accommodate news and pictures of our many events.

We didn't accomplish all that we did this year by kicking back. Instead our corps of volunteers added to their number and continued to invest much of their free time in the O.S.C. because they believe in the good that we do as a club. We couldn't have become what we are today without the help of these marvelous people and though their efforts may seem at times to go unnoticed, they and their good deeds are very much appreciated.

Wolverine Club House
Commemorative Plate Offered
"In-House" Raffle Only
The Ottawa Sportsmen's Club is conducting a "members only" raffle for a hand turned and wood engraved commemorative plate depicting the original clubhouse as it looked in 1946.

The hard maple that this plate is made of was harvested from the Robert Hietikko timber plantation located on the beautiful banks of the Otter River north of Pelkie near Bob's home.

Ron Haka, who is well known locally as a Master Craftsman, was responsible for making this beautiful plate, which is a fine example of his skill in working with wood. Both of these men are long time members of the Ottawa Sportsmen's Club who have donated their time and effort for many years to help make our organization the well-respected club that it is today. Both just recently retired as members of our Board of Directors, positions they held for several years. Bob has also served as Club President.

Joe Dyke, our current Vice President, did the detailed wood burned engraving, copying from a photo taken shortly after the original clubhouse was built. Joe, a "Troll" by birth, but a "Wanna-Be Yooper" at heart, brought his woodworking talents north with him just a few years ago and has since become a very valuable and dedicated member of our organization.

The "2003 Plate" is intended to represent the cooperation among our members, as well as to depict and preserve a little of the history of the club. It would be an honor to have this plate displayed in the home or camp of one of our Ottawa Sportsmen's Club members.

The raffle is limited to members only and the drawing will be held during our December 2003 membership meeting. Enclosed, you will find a set of tickets that sells at 6 for $5.00. Should you want to take a chance on winning this "2003 Commemorative Plate", please enclose an additional $5.00 with your dues, fill out the tickets and return them to the Membership Secretary who will forward then to the Raffle Committee. (Please note: web version will not include these tickets.)

"Cooking Up A Fundraiser"
Please, Everyone, Help Us with this Project!

The O.S.C. cannot sustain itself on just our $25.00 dues alone. That's why our fundraisers are so very important. Even with the revenue from the Turkey Shoot, we are hard pressed to pay our overhead and also maintain our great events and activities, many of which are directed toward the area youth in three counties.

To help with some of our costs, there's been interest in developing an O.S.C. Cookbook as a fundraiser and with approval from the Membership, Carol Laski has volunteered to chair a committee, which will organize and send our member's favorite recipes off to the printer.

The most important "ingredient" we need, however, will be your cooperation in enclosing, along with your dues remittance, just one, two or more of your most tempting and tasty special recipes. We'll forward them to Carol and her Culinary Committee for inclusion in the very first edition of the Ottawa Sportsmen's Club Cook Book. It'll only take a moment of your time, but it will make all the difference to the success of this project. Please help by filling out the enclosed recipe form!

Editor's Corner
We apologize for the tardiness in getting this newsletter and dues notice to our members. We've had lots of last minute additions and making everything fit has been a real challenge. Though it's made for more work, it's also testimony to our constant desire to make things even better than they've been in the past.

I'm extremely proud to be a member of the Ottawa Sportsmen's Club and have no problem sharing that pride with others in the community or in the distances the words I write reach. As OSC reporter, it's necessary for me to be involved with almost anything that happens around the club. Because of that, I'm in a position to see that it takes a great deal of dedication and cooperation from our little pool of volunteers to make this club tick. And I can understand also what "Burn-Out" means. Same old people, same old things…

Our growth in numbers and new activities has been phenomenal, especially over the last three or four years. But, with growth comes more responsibility, which in turn must be shouldered by those who seem to be "chronic" volunteers. Those people tend to grumble about further burdens, but this does not negate the pride they also feel in helping us achieve our goals. Thank God for these people!

We have ideas for new events, but these take manpower and to put it bluntly, we need more help. One project, still in the developmental stage for next summer, is a "Take a Kid Fishing" Day. There's also been some interest in "Sporting Clays" and an "Archery" program. We have a chairman to develop each of these activities, but we need people to help set up and run them. Many of you who are reading this letter have the skills to help with these projects or the time to help with the ones already in existence. Please, don't hesitate to get involved. We need you!!! Give me a call at 338-2507 and I'll contact an event chairman to add you as a volunteer or provide a number so you can contact them yourself.
~ Carole Williams

Club Dues 2003:

                                   2003 DUES NOTICE
                  Complete, Clip, & Return To The Membership Secretary

Dues in the amount of $25.00 for the year 2003 are being paid by:

Name___________________________ Address__________________________________________________

Phone___________________________ E-Mail________________________ Birthdate_________________

Comments or Suggestions: __________________________________________________________________


Please make your check payable to the Ottawa Sportsmen's Club and send it along with this 
form to:  Mike Williams, Membership Secretary, P.O. Box 98, Pelkie, MI 49958.  
If you have questions concerning your membership status, Mike can be reached at 338-2507 
or by E-Mail at  Dues may also be dropped off at the club.

Each member will receive this newsletter and if your dues have already been remitted, the 
above form will be marked as paid.  However, please use the form as a change of address if 
necessary or if you want to make any comments.

For Local Members:

___Yes, please contact me to help with one of our club events or activities.  
I might be able to help with this event or activity:

___Sorry, I'm already busy with lots of other things and will let you know when I'm available 
to help out! 

____ Appetizers, Beverages & Dips                 ____ Pies, Pastries & Desserts
____ Bread & Rolls                                ____ Soups, Salads & Vegetables
____ Cakes, Cookies & Candy                       ____ Miscellaneous
____ Main Dishes & Casseroles                     ____ Wild Game
____ Meat, Poultry & Seafood

Name of Recipe:

Your Name (as you want it to appear in the book):


Directions (please be clear and thorough yet concise):

Please feel free to make copies and submit more than one recipe.  
Don't hesitate to include tasty recipes for venison, bear, elk, or other "Wild Game".
The Cook Books will sell at $10.00 each and will contain approximately 350 recipes 
submitted by our members.  You can send these directly to:
Carol Laski at 15890 Torro Rd., Chassell, MI 49916 
or remit them with your dues to the Membership Secretary:  
Mike Williams, at P.O. Box 98, Pelkie, MI 49958.  
Please DO NOT send your dues to Carol!!!      
___Yes, please reserve a copy of the Ottawa Sportsmen's Cook Book for me!
Name:______________________  Address:______________________________________________________

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