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Illinois Scouts earning their Quail Forever patches

600 Scouts taking part in weekend encampment          Send a link to a friend

[May 03, 2007]  BUNKER HILL -- Illinois' largest youth event will take place this weekend as 600 Cub, Boy and Venturing Scouts participate in the Trails West Council 2007 Shooting Sports Encampment sponsored by Quail Forever. The Friday through Sunday event at Brittany Shooting Park in Bunker Hill gives youth of all ages the opportunity to take part in shooting sports and other outdoor activities.

Units, dens, packs, troops, patrols, venture crews, exploring posts and their families are invited to take part in the event. The Trails West Council serves over 10,000 youth each year in a six-county area of southwestern Illinois.

Cub Scouts will have the opportunity to take part in BB gun shooting and slingshots, while Boy Scouts and Venturing Scouts will learn to safely operate .22-caliber rifles, shotguns and black powder rifles. All scouts will participate in archery. Scouts who complete the weekend will receive a Quail Forever Scout uniform patch, and shooting scores can be applied to merit badges at summer camp.

"It's important that youth receive opportunities to find out what the outdoors has to offer," said Tim Caughran, regional wildlife biologist with Quail Forever in Illinois. "We're pleased to be teaming with the various Scout groups to give hundreds of youth a weekend to take aim at a variety of shooting sports."

The encampment will also feature special guest appearances by shooting champion "Chief AJ," the famous shooter who two decades ago set the world record on moving targets with 10,400 shots without a miss. He will give the youth a BB gun trapshooting demonstration.

Cost for the encampment is $13. To register, for directions and for more information, visit or e-mail the Trails West Council at

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For more information on Quail Forever in Illinois, contact Tim Caughran at 618-467-2586 or

Illinois' 11 Quail Forever and 45 Pheasants Forever chapters account for over 7,600 members statewide. Those chapters have spent more than $8.8 million to complete over 25,000 habitat projects since the first Illinois Pheasants Forever chapter was formed in 1985. Those projects have benefited more than 200,000 acres for wildlife.

Pheasants Forever launched Quail Forever in August of 2005 to address the continuing loss of habitat suitable for quail and the subsequent quail population decline. Quail Forever chapters promote local, state and federal conservation programs that help landowners protect environmentally sensitive acres for quail and other wildlife. They also employ the organization's unique model of empowering local chapters with 100 percent control of the chapters' locally raised funds to complete habitat and youth education projects in the chapters' own communities. Since the organization's inception, more than 85 Quail Forever chapters have formed in 25 states. The Quail Forever mission is accomplished through habitat improvement, land management, public awareness, education and conservation advocacy.

For additional information about Quail Forever, visit

[Text from news release received from Quail Forever]

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