I’ve been involved with the Sportsman’s Jamboree since its inception back in 1980. Over the years, we have featured an array of talented and well-known special guest speakers from Grits Gresham to Ben Rodgers Lee to Harold Knight to David Hale to Preston Pittman to James “Dr. Deer” Kroll et al.
Having a speaker who is both informative and entertaining is part of what has made the Jamboree such a success each year. This year, we have beat the bushes and come up with another winner for our speaker, one who is guaranteed to make it worthwhile for folks to attend.
Ray Eye has been referred to as the most famous turkey hunter in the world. With more than forty-five years of turkey hunting experience, and thirty years of presenting seminars such as the one he’ll bring to Ruston, he has cultivated a huge following across the United States.
Born into a Missouri Ozarks country farm family, Eye began his turkey hunting career at an early age, having been taught by all his older kin. Back when he started hunting, fancy camo, modern turkey calls, magnum shotgun shells, decoys, extra-full turkey chokes just didn’t exist; he had to make do with what was available back then, and he obviously has made do quite well.
Once Eye got the hang of how to call in and hunt gobblers, he moved his game up a notch and now has his own website (check out Eye on the Outdoors), a turkey hunting blog on Outdoorlife.com, his own television and radio shows, plus his line of Chasing Turkeys DVDs.
He is also an author with his newest book, “Ray Eye’s Turkey Hunter’s Bible: The Tips, Tactics and Secrets of a Professional Turkey Hunter”, a book to impress the most astute turkey hunter.
While wild turkeys occupy much of his interest, Jamboree attendees with interest lying more in hunting deer, won’t be disappointed because Eye is also an expert deer hunter. His “Deer Camp” DVD features “youth deer hunting, doe management and good old fashioned ‘working man’ firearm gun deer hunting.” This DVD features 16 whitetail deer hunts presented in a seminar fashion filled with tips and instructions.
“This is a much different type of deer hunting DVD,” Eye said. “Although big bucks seem to be the craze of today’s hunters, we concentrate more on youth hunters, doe management, black powder and the hunting industry’s largest market, modern firearm hunting. It’s not about how many inches of antler, how big a buck is or what he scores; it’s about the tradition of deer hunting with family and friends.”
With this impressive resume, folks who attend the 34th Annual Sportsman’s Jamboree on Thursday, September 19 will come away with valuable information on turkey and deer hunting but also be royally entertained by this legendary hunter who has presented seminars for more than 30 years.
This year, the Jamboree committee is pleased to announce a partnership with the Louisiana Tech College of Applied and Natural Science, enabling the continued use of the Thomas Assembly Center as headquarters for the event.
Not only will attendees be treated to a speaker of the caliber of Ray Eye, there will be presentations made by local law enforcement officials regarding new wildlife laws that will be of interest. In addition, wildlife biologists will be on hand to give a forecast of what hunters can expect when they hit the woods this fall. Thousands of dollars worth of valuable merchandise will be awarded as well.
With a program such as this, the obvious question is the cost to attendees. Thanks to the generosity of so many, the Jamboree has never charged a cent to attend. It’s a family-friendly event to be enjoyed by kids as well as adults.