CODY (WNE) — The Wyoming Game and Fish Commission has broadly embraced director Brian Nesvik’s vision to woo more young people into the outdoors.
“I’m very passionate about it,” Nesvik said at the commission meeting in Powell last week.
The department has introduced a new program called “Inspire a Kid: It’s for Life.”
The thrust, as outlined on a web page on the G&F website, offers suggestions for families to teach their children how to enjoy the outdoors, whether it be fishing, hunting, wildlife photography, hiking or other programs.
“We’re investing now in kids,” Nesvik said at the meeting in the Yellowstone Building on the campus of Northwest College.
Nesvik said he was inspired to generate the Inspire-a-Kid program a couple of years ago when he was on a backcountry horseback trip with his son.
He recalled events with his own children spotting wildlife in the state, such as bears with cubs, and thought back to his own outdoors experiences as a youth that shaped his outlook.
This sparked Nesvik’s thinking that youths are the key to preserving Wyoming’s resources for later generations.
The key, he said, is introducing the young to the outdoors so they will endorse conservation efforts.
The department’s youth website offers suggestions to parents about places they can take children – there is a mention of a youth pheasant hunt – and shows pictures of children enjoying outdoor activities.
Commissioner Patrick Crank is enthusiastic about what he learned.
“This is going to inspire a whole new generation of hunters and outdoorsmen,” Crank said.