GFP News - December 13, 2013

  • Grant Funding Will Aide Youth Conservation Education
  • Bighorn Sheep Hunting Season Proposed

Grant funding will aide youth conservation education

PIERRE, S.D. - South Dakota youth will have more opportunities to learn about the outdoors and conservation through the Tony and Dar Dean Outdoor Education Fund that will be awarding grants in the spring of 2014.

The Tony and Dar Dean Outdoor Education Fund was established in memory of outdoor broadcaster and writer Tony Dean, who died in 2008, and in honor of his wife Dar Dean, an outdoor enthusiast who has a strong commitment to enhancing outdoor education opportunities.

Working in cooperation with the South Dakota Parks and Wildlife Foundation, the Tony and Dar Dean Outdoor Education Fund will provide small grant funding for projects associated with youth conservation education in South Dakota.

These small grants are intended to provide resources and support to individuals and organizations desiring to provide quality educational outdoor experiences and are eligible to be used in a variety of ways, including, but not limited to: funding travel for students or groups to educational events; providing supplies and materials to promote outdoor knowledge and skills; creating new activities and events that increase outdoor knowledge and participation among South Dakota families and youth.

The window for accepting proposals will run from Jan. 1 to March 15, 2014. A total of $4,000 is available to applicants for calendar year 2014 to apply toward activities and projects that will be completed in late 2014 or in 2015. Grant Projects will be funded for a minimum of $500 to a maximum of $1500.

All applications for the Tony and Dar Dean Outdoor Education Fund small grants will only be taken electronically/online using the application form provided.

The summary of the small grants program and the application form can be found at www.TonyDean.com and on the South Dakota Parks and Wildlife Foundation website at www.parkswildlifefoundation.org.

For related questions, please call John Cooper at 605.222.7582 or Wayne Winter at 605.773.4503.

The group working on this effort plan to build the fund so a larger number of grants can be awarded in the future. For information on making tax-deductible contributions to the Tony and Dar Dean Outdoor Education Fund, visit www.parkswildlifefoundation.org.

Bighorn Sheep Hunting Season Proposed

HURON, S.D. - The South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks Commission has proposed the 2014 bighorn sheep hunting season with two slight modifications from 2013.

One proposed change would limit the auction license holder to hunting strictly in Unit 2, which is comprised of Custer County west of Highway 79, excluding Custer State Park, Wind Cave National Park and Jewel Cave National Monument.

The other proposed change would modify the current boundary description for Unit 1 to include only the geographic area of the Rapid Creek bighorn sheep sub-herd population. This would include the portion of Pennington County from Highway 385 and the Pennington County line, south on Highway 385 to Sheridan Lake Road, east on Sheridan Lake Road to Highway 79 in Rapid City and north on Highway 79 to the Pennington County line.

The season will run from Sept. 1 - Dec. 31 with one "ram bighorn sheep" license available for Unit 1 and two "ram bighorn sheep" licenses available for Unit 2. One of the two licenses in Unit 2 will be auctioned by the Wild Sheep Foundation as part of a fundraiser for bighorn sheep management in South Dakota.

These proposed rule changes will be finalized at the Jan. 9 GFP Commission meeting, which will be held in Fort Pierre at the Holiday Inn Express. To view the full proposals on those seasons, visit www.gfp.sd.gov/agency/commission/default.aspx and look under the "Rule Proposals" heading.

To comment on any of the proposals, send a letter to South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks Commission, 523 E. Capitol Ave., Pierre, SD 57501; or email wildinfo@state.sd.us. Comments on proposals will be taken until 5 p.m. CST on Jan. 8. To be included in the public record, please include your full name and city of residence.

For those who would like to comment in person on these proposed rule changes, the GFP Commission will host a public hearing beginning at 2 p.m. CST as part of their meeting.

-GFP-