When Whitehorse was re-branded The Wilderness City it made me think of all the activities and events that are held here annually. As a director of the Yukon Fish and Game Association (YFGA) I am engaged in a lot of outdoor events that help contribute to this reputation.
I was told when I moved here almost 10 years ago that the best part of Whitehorse is that the Yukon is only half-an-hour away. It only took a few days in Whitehorse to see foxes, coyotes and hear that a black bear was being a pest up the street. So it seemed odd that someone would tell me the Yukon was half-an-hour away.
YFGA has spent a great deal of time and money promoting the Yukon to outsiders. We also spend a huge amount of time trying to get Yukoners to get off the couch, bring your kids out and enjoy some things that people pay five figures to do.
All our events are family orientated. If you are two or 72 you will have a good time. For some people these are new experiences and for others, they’re just another reason to get out and enjoy the outdoors. It is likely you have been to one of our events and not even known it.
You may have bought a Toyota truck raffle ticket with proceeds going towards our youth outdoor education camp. There is also a video contest open to the public where you have a chance to win a new GoPro HD Hero2 for your entries on traditional knowledge, general interest and educational material. These can be based on any outdoor activity or event as long as it’s limited to four minutes.
We start our year with a wild game banquet that offers a variety of local delicacies like moose, caribou, sheep, elk, black bear, lynx, northern pike and burbot. The menu varies year-to-year depending on the theme and meat donations.
Throughout the year there are also many fishing events. On April 7 we will be hosting Family Fishing Day at Lake Laberge. Expect free hotdogs, hot chocolate, coffee, juice, and most importantly, predrilled holes. All you need to bring is your license, rod and lures.
In the summer there will be many other fishing activities. Combined with Natural Resources during Family Fishing Week, there will be events at Hidden Lakes for those less adventurous. Participants will have the opportunity to ride with an officer or director in a powered boat.
Another of my favourite events is the fry-release at Wolf Creek. It is so amazing to watch the little kids when you hand them a see-through plastic bag of salmon fry to release. Some even ask if they can take them home. This usually happens around the end of May depending on when the fry are ready. Again food and beverages are free.
Come join us at one or all of these events. We are always looking for new members and help from volunteers to make these events memorable. When I attended my first banquet I had so much fun I decided to become a director of the YFGA and help people enjoy all aspects of this place we call the last frontier.
For more information on membership and events go to www.yukonfga.ca