Youth Wild Turkey Hunt participants announces


GREENVILLE — The Light Foundation is kicking off its 2023 programming with the 14th annual Youth Wild Turkey Hunt. In a couple of weeks, 17 young people will gather at the non-profit’s 450-acre facility, Chenoweth Trails, in Darke County, with many veteran volunteers from across the country and Matt Light, Greenville native and three-time Super Bowl Champion and Hall of Famer with the New England Patriots.

The dates of this program are determined by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources each year. They reserve the weekend for anyone 17 years or younger to be accompanied by a non-hunting adult. The hours available for hunting are 30 minutes before sunrise to sunset, although young people accepted into the Light Foundation’s Youth Wild Turkey Hunt will only hunt until noon. Youth hunters must pass a Hunter Safety Course along with obtaining a valid hunting license and turkey tag.

The Light Foundation is a non-profit that was founded in 2001 to help young people develop the skills, values and mindset they need to create a meaningful and productive future. For this program, they opened applications to anyone between the ages of 12-17. The application required a 500-word essay on the topic: “Focus,” which were graded anonymously by a committee to determine who would be selected.

“We had a record number of applicants this year, which tells us that this program is a great resource for young people looking to get into the outdoors to learn conservation efforts while also acquiring leadership skills that they can use in other aspects of their lives,” says Light.

The selected applicants are Caleb Baker, Matthew Denlinger, Brock Durst, Moxon Gilpin, Jasen Godown, Cali Harter, Libby Harter, Ben Hartman, Ethan Hartman, Memphis Hughes, Wes Keller, Corban Kemper, Trevar Martin, Clair Rammel, Ryan Rosinski, Benjamin Traxler and Mak Whitton.

“Our team spends a lot of time preparing for this three-day program from planning the safety orientation, the Kick-Off Dinner for supporters, gaining land access from area landowners, forming leadership building activities for the participants while they aren’t in the woods, and a lot more,” states Troy Eden, chief operations officer of Chenoweth Trails. “The committee for this program starts gathering in January and there’s no way we could thank them enough for all that they do to make it a success.”

A lot of area businesses and nationally recognized hunting brands have graciously stepped up to make this possible! Gobbler Sponsors include Lacrosse Boots, Mossy Oak, Bass Pro & Cabela’s Outdoor Fund, AES Foundation, Stachler Concrete Pumping, Koenig Equipment, Inc., and Thompson Center. The next level of sponsorship being the Long Beard Sponsors include David Trimble, Bettker Taxidermy, Winner’s Meats, Sharp’s Tavern, Quaker Boy, and Winchester Ammunition. Next up are the Gobbler Sponsors, which includes Eikenberry’s IGA, Pheasants Forever, Francis Furniture, Zegun Arms, Frank Miller Lumber, Vandalia Range & Armory, Inc., Sonlight Farms LLC, Kline Timber Company, VPP, NWTF, Beanz Buttercream Bakery, Woodhaven Custom Calls, Sarge Knives, Leslie Gunckel, ALPS Outdoorz, Primos, Prosperity Promotions, OnX Hunt, Godown Farms and Kristi’s Cakes.

If you’re interested in getting involved in the Light Foundation, visit their website or follow their social accounts @lightfoundation. You may also contact Brandi Turner at [email protected].

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