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The competition borders on intense in rabbit hunt fundraiser

Hunters will be sparking on Electric Avenue Saturday evening after a rabbit-hunt competition that day.

Entrants in the Ninth Annual Frank Privitere Memorial International Rabbit Hunting Derby, hosted by the New Empire Beagle Club, will gather at the Thomas E. Tehan American Legion Post in Blasdell for dinner and awards presentations. Prizes go to hunters weighing in the three heaviest cottontail rabbits harvested from New York and Ontario hunting grounds. The entry fee includes dinner.

A stiff rivalry has developed over the years of this competition between Western New York hunter teams and groups for Ontario, with Canadian individuals and teams taking numerous honors.

This annual fundraiser draws additional competitors each year and proceeds from each hunt are donated to an area cause or individuals. This year’s recipients are the WNY Homeless Woman Veterans, Comforting Hugs Foundation and MDA for ALS Research.

For hunt rules, entry details and directions, check with Rick Giermata at 602-5017.

Waterway access

Niagara Riverkeeper is offering a conversation-forum on uses and amenities best incorporated into a Waterways Center to exhibit and service water stewardship and water-based recreation.

The forum will be held at the D!G Innovation Center, 640 Ellicott, from 6 -7 p.m. Tuesday. Local experts and community members will discuss the various aspects of a center’s focus and functions.

Space for this forum is limited; individuals must register in advance. For forum and registration details, visit

Junior archers

The JOAD (Junior Olympics Archery Development) program is at full draw along the indoor range at Allied Sportsmen’s Club in Alden on Saturday mornings.

Youths of all ages can participate. Beginners start at 9 a.m., shooting at 10-yard targets. “We have them as young as five shooting at 5 yards,” said JOAD coordinator Dale Hoffman.

The more advanced youths begin shooting at 11 a.m. At least five instructors assist in the program that welcomes young archers at all skill levels. For details about this program, check with Hoffman at 440-1582.

No joshing

After 93 years, of supplying anglers, especially bass fishermen, with popular bait, Uncle Josh Pork Rinds will soon be gone.

With all the synthetic styles of soft baits on the market, the flow and flutter of pork-skin fins and tails sometimes has a natural appeal missing in vinyl/plastic lure bodies. Pork baits require more care; serious anglers must keep these bodies stored in their bottle of salt water to retain strength and flexibility.

In mid-December, company officials announced the closure of Uncle Josh, the result of modern pork production methods that bring much younger pig stock to slaughter. In years past, pigs 2-3 years old were processed. Today, the average is 6 months. The skin and fatback of young pigs are thinner and lack the durability needed to make pork-rind baits sturdy enough for bass bites and battles.

Bass anglers are urged to look on line and check area tackle dealers this winter for remaining bottles of Uncle Josh before the season opener this spring.