ROSE CITY – Wildcard Outdoor Adventures recently held its 5th Annual Ladies Grouse and Woodcock Hunt Oct. 14.
The Commerce Township organization had 16 women, led by five guides with their dogs, participate in a hunt for Ruffed Grouse and Woodcock across Ogemaw, Oscoda and Iosco counties.
Although the organization is based downstate, it’s operated by a pair of Ogemaw County natives, Lori Card, and Brian Stroik. Both graduated from Ogemaw Heights High School.
“We hold the event here because we’re from Ogemaw County,” Card said. “And it gives us the opportunity to bring some business back up into the area. “
The event was Card’s brainchild in 2014 after some bad experiences in outdoor stores, which can be intimidating for women, as they traditionally cater to men. She grew up in a hunting family and wanted to share her positive experiences.
“We did it to empower women and children who want to participate in the outdoor sports,” she said. “I wanted to show moms a way to feel more self-sufficient. And help them to be more confident when they walk into an outdoor store looking for something they need.”
Card is pleased with the support of the local community, including the Rose City Café, where the event begins with breakfast with the guides and hunters; and the Faull Inn, where it ends with a celebration of the hunt.
Card said guides took five groups of hunters to wherever their “honey holes” were, and three women harvested Woodcock.
“But we had lots of flushes, and everyone saw birds,” Card said.
Woman can register to participate in the 2024 hunt next September by registering at Wild Card Outdoor Adventures on Facebook when the hunt date is announced, or at www.wildcardoutdoors.com. The number of women who can participate is based on the number of guides who are available to volunteer. Next year’s hunt is scheduled for Sept. 28 or Oct. 19.
The event was sponsored in part by Safari Club International, The Robert J. Lyle Chapter of the Ruffed Grouse Society, American Woodcock Society, Rose City Cafe, Faull Inn, Mid-Michigan Safari Club International and the West Branch Visitors Bureau.