Set the "Tablescape"

"Come set the table!'

How I dreaded those words when I was little...however, now I would much rather set the table than clean up the mess. Creating a nice "tablescape" is half of the fun.

We love hunting and fishing at Bass Pro Shops...and eating much of what we hunt and fish! Any true cook will tell you that food simply tastes better when served on a nicely set table. Lately, we've received new dinnerware in stock at Bass Pro Shops. Different colors of a current style and some additional patterns, some of which would appeal to that person who doesn't care for a buck staring at them while they eat or a giant bass leaping out of their food for every single their meals. Someone like me!

Dinnerware - Bass Pro Shops AltoonaLooking for something earthy, however, not flat-out cabin style? The Wilderness Collection Embossed Stoneware 16-piece set comes in a rustic antiques finish in three colors - the original cream, and now rust and green, which is a sage color. This style is my #1 choice. It's embossed design around the edges is of our four most majestic wildlife - the bull moose, the elk, the black bear, and the whitetail. There are four each of mug, dinner plate, salad plate, and bowl. It is dishwasher and microwave safe and makes a GREAT housewarming or wedding gift idea.

Here's another great one - the Bass Pro Shops Realtree Xtra Green Dinnerware set. Bass Pro Shops Realtree Xtra GreenCamo dinner plates?  But wait, it doesn't look like camo and if someone didn't have any idea what Realtree Xtra Green was, they would say, "My what beautiful woodland dinnerware you have!" A 100% stoneware full of warmth and beauty...can you see it on your winter dinner party or Christmas table? I can! Comes with four each: mug, dinner plate, salad plate, and bowl, and is dishwasher and microwave safe.

Now, if you ARE going for more of the total cabin or outdoors look, you might enjoy the Black and White Deer 16-Piece set. the beautiful artwork of renowned artist Al Agnew graces these plates. Stunning, yet simple and perfect for all-round or just those hearty, special harvest meals!

 

Last, but not least, the Bass Pro Shops exclusive Deep Forest 16-piece set is beautiful. It has debossed wildlife deBass Pro Shops Deep Woods dinnerware - Bass Pro Shops Altoonasigns that are accented with reactive glaze created by melting different colors together. What's also nice is, along with the four dinner plates and four slad plates, it also comes with oversized mugs and bowls...four 28 oz. bowls, and four 14 oz. mugs. Get the venison chili ready!

These can all be found online or check with your closest Bass Pro Shops. There are other dinnerware selections also online.

Don't forget! While you're working on those table settings, remember the coordinating flatware!

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Product Spotlight - Last Minute Dove Gear!

Dove season starts Monday, September 1, in Iowa. Here are a couple of last minute dove hunting items our Hunting Manager Shaun Bequeaith recommends:

RedHead Dove StoolRedHead Dove Stool

The RedHead Dove Stool in RealTree Xtra gives you the best seat in the sunflower field! Easy to carry and has a built-in, zippered compartment under the seat. Perfect for ammo and other important gear...like jerky, sun protection, and water...while you rest your legs and wait for the doves to come in! Made of heavy duty, water resistance polyester fabric, and has a built in carrying strap for easy transport. Folds up nicely too for storage!

 

CamoFX Face PaintCamoFX Face Paint System

Doves have extremely good eye sight. Put on your best game face, so they don't spot you! Easy to apply, this three-color system was designed by hunters and has been field tested in a variety of hunting situations. It allows you to put the high-def paint on evenly, quickly, and it doesn't crack, dry up, run or smear.

 

RedHead Rubber Dove Decoy 4-packMake sure to check your decoys...if you need new ones, the MOJO Outdoors VooDoo Dove Decoy runs on batteries, so the wings are always moving...NOT just when there is a breeze. Plus, the new RedHead Rubber Dove Decoy 4-pack provides a realistic option for perched doves. The spring clips on the bottom allow you to clip them to tree branches and fences, providing a realistic atmosphere for your hunt.

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This Weekend @ Bass Pro Shops Altoona - Hometown Festival and Heroes!

The last official weekend of summer! Labor Day campers, football fans, holiday visitors, and Hy-Vee Triathlon viewers will all be in our store this weekend...plus families looking for some good old-fashioned fun on a rainy day!

Saturday, 8/30 & Sunday, 8/31 - Noon-5 p.m.

Duck Pond
Metal detector treasure hunt
Casting buckets
Face painting
Free Craft
Free photo download
Two $25 gift cards given away each day!

Outdoor Cooking Seminars Both Days
1:30pm - Stoked to Smoke: How to Smoke Meat Right
2:30pm - Backyard Chef: Picking the Right Grill
3:30pm - Going Dutch: Dutch Oven Cooking Made Easy

Free Hot Dogs and Ice Cream Samples - Saturday and Sunday Aug. 30 & 31
Hot Dogs 1-4pm
Ice cream 4-5pm

Honoring Hometown Heroes Event - Bass Pro Shops AltoonaNEW this year - Honoring our Hometown Heroes - special drawings from 2-4 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 30, for veterans, active duty military and military personnel, law enforcement, fire fighters, paramedics, and teachers!

 

 

Try Before You Buy!

Our Gifts Department will be serving up a fish fry for our Hometown Heroes on Aug. 30 with Uncle Buck's Original Fish Batter.

Aug. 31- They're serving up Uncle Buck’s Biscuits and Gravy!

Coming up?

Boy Scout Donation Month and Merit Badge classes at Bass Pro Shops! The classes begin September 2 and will be held on Tuesday and Thursday evenings at 6 p.m. to help scouts work toward their Fishing and Rifle Shooting Badges. The schedule varies and you must pre-register in person at Customer Service or call the store at 515-957-5500.

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Teal Season Changes

Due to higher than usual population numbers, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has given several states the opportunity to make some changes in their teal season.

In Iowa, a special teal-only season will run September 6-21. In Iowa, bluewing teal will be especially prevalent, as they common throughout the central state waterfowl regions and second only to the mallard in numbers. They're also the earliest migrators, leaving in late August and September.

Since this special season is only for teal, proper identification is important. Check out these tips for identifying teal from the Iowa DNR and the Delta Waterfowl organization.

In Iowa, all standard state and federal waterfowl hunting regulations apply during the special teal season. However, shooting Blue-winged Tealhours will differ in that hunters can ONLY shoot from sunrise to sunset and NOT one 1/2 hour before sunrise to sunset.

For information on opportunities in other states visit Delta Waterfowl's Delta News article and check with you state conservation and natural resources agencies.

Bass Pro Shops Altoona Hunting Manager Shaun Bequeaith and Maintenance Lead Steve Staerk, both hunters, offer these tips:

  • Look to shallow waters for teal habitat.
  • Downsize your shot - use 4 shot steel
  • Scout head of time.
  • Don't be afraid to mix in some larger mallard decoys with your teal decoys, so they'll be more easily spotted by teals from above.

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It's a Hometown Festival

It's the last holiday weekend of summer - send summer out in style with our old-fashioned Hometown Festival!

Bass Pro Shops Altoona Hometown Festival

Saturday and Sunday, August 30 & 31
Labor Day Weekend

Noon-5 p.m.

To us, a Hometown Festival means fun and food...and we'll have both!

Here's the lineup of events:

  • Duck Pond - Kids pick a duck for a cool prize!
  • Metal detector treasure hunt
  • Casting buckets
  • Face painting
  • Free Craft - Color an Owl Backpack Clip!
  • Free photo download - like you're in the #14 car!

Two $25 gift cards given away each day!

Outdoor Cooking Seminars Both Days
1:30 p.m. - Stoked to Smoke: How to Smoke Meat Right
2:30 p.m. - Backyard Chef: Picking the Right Grill
3:30 p.m. - Going Dutch: Dutch Oven Cooking Made Easy

Free Hot Dogs and Ice Cream Samples - Both days!
Hot Dogs 1-4 p.m.
Ice cream 4-5 p.m.

Plus, these free food samples!
August 30 - Uncle Buck’s Pancakes and Uncle Buck’s Syrup
August 31 - Uncle Buck’s Biscuits and Gravy

Additionally, on Saturday, August 30, we recognize our hometown heroes - special drawings only for veterans, soldiers, military personnel, law enforcement, firefighters, paramedics, and teachers!

Honoring our Hometown Heroes

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The Importance of Practice

Does practice make perfect? That's the theory. It's great weather to be practicing with your bow...tuning up, checking up and preparing your equipment, so you can make a clean harvest and be safe. However, missing a shot is one of those key mental hurdles that newcomers...whether man, woman, or child...have to conquer. Maria Young, from Dressed to Kill TV, is the first to say keep on practicing and don't get discouraged. Everyone has missed at some point, but practice will keep you in the game. Check out her comments and hear about her own personal experiences with "the miss" here in this brief YouTube video:

Pick up that bow, grab a target and start practicing. Get reacquainted with your gear and your form.

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This Weekend @ Bass Pro Shops Altoona - Bacon Ketchup!

There's always SOMETHING going on at our store on the weekend! While some weekends are a little quieter, like this one, that just means we're gearing up for another event down the road!Captain Thom's Slappin' Fat Bacon Ketchup

Saturday, August 23 - Try Before you Buy!

Our Gifts Department is offering up hush puppy samples made from  Uncle Buck’s Hush Puppy mix...plus dip them in Captain Thom’s Slappin’ Fat Bacon Ketchup...YUM!  Everything tastes better with bacon in it!  Grab a hush puppy and dip it by the Sunglasses Counter between Noon & 4 p.m. 

Sunday, August 24 - Legal Heat Class

10:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. in the White River Fly Shop.Lega Heat

One class qualifies you to apply for permits in Iowa, Utah, and Arizona, expanding the states you can carry in to 36. Taught by nationally known Legal Heat, the class is about four hours long and only $75. Please register ahead of time at www.mylegalheat.com.

Coming Up?

Labor Day Hometown Festival!It's a Hometown Festival for Labor Day! Two days of fun events for kids, plus free hot dogs and ice cream samples. Check out our Facebook page and store page at www.basspro.com for details!

Saturday, August 30

We save two hourHometown Heroes Day!s JUST for our Hometown Heroes! A special two hours of drawings just for veterans, members of the armed forces and military personnel, police, firefighters, paramedics, and teachers! Hourly drawings:


2 p.m. - $50 Bass Pro Shops gift card
3 p.m. - Maui Jim sunglasses - $250 value
4 p.m. - YETI cooler - $300 value!
Must show your respective ID to register for prizes. Fish fry samples, also!

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Outdoor Cooking Primer/Product Spotlight - Uncle Buck's BBQ Rub 3-Pack

Uncle Buck's BBQ Rub 3-Pack - Bass Pro ShopsWe're bringing you the best of both blog worlds today! New this year at Bass Pro Shops is the Uncle Buck's BBQ Rub 3-Pack. Three different seasoning rubs in one package - one for brisket, one for chicken and one for pork. As a fan of outdoor cooking, I decided to try at least two and give them a big thumbs up.

I used the chicken rub on a whole bird on the gas grill rotisserie. I am the person who typically doesn't buy pre-mixed rubs; I createRotisserie Chicken with Uncle Buck's Chicken Rub my own, have my standard "go-to" ingredients, and often throw in a few surprises. However, I decided to give these a whirl and must say it was really good. What I liked best is that I didn't have to use a large amount and still enjoyed great flavor. Another positive is that it's not overly salty, which is another pet peeve of mine. But, it has nice hints of celery, garlic and black pepper, which I love!  Since the rotisserie chicken, we've also used it on split chicken breasts cooked low and slow on the grill, and I plan to use it on the smoker next. I'm not a big fan of sweet rubs - while it's advertised as such, I didn't sense the sweetness.

The pork rub was used for smoking a pork roast. Its paprika, brown sugar, salt, and chili powder Snoked Pork Roastblend was not too overbearing. Those who don't like spicy should find it to be just right. In fact, even my "secret ingredient" liquid that I add while smoking, didn't hamper the flavor of the rub. Once again, it was not too salty - another plus!

The handy shaker bottles come in three slightly varying sizes - 6.2 oz. for the brisket, 5.7 oz. for the chicken, and 5.1 oz. for the pork seasoning.

We don't cook brisket a lot, so testing that one may have to wait a while, but I'm confident it will be just as good!

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Treestand Safety

Tree Stand SafetyAugust is Treestand Safety Awareness month. According to the National Bowhunter Education Foundation's PROJECT STAND, national studies indicate that 10-30% of hunters who hunt from treestands will have an incident sometime in their hunting career...one out of two stand users do not use any form of safety device.

The TMA has some great safety tips on their web site, plus here are some additional tips from Bass Pro Shops 1Source. For a quick refresher on Treestand Safety Tips

Maria Young from Dressed to Kill TV is an avid hunter and adamant about safety! From how she steps on the rungs, to how she moves, and having that life line always on, she knows that safety is paramount. The hunter needs to have a constant awareness of what is going on. Hear more from Maria in this brief YouTube video:

Make sure to check with your state department of natural resources or similar agency regarding Hunter Education courses and licensing. For more information on treestand safety, visit the Treestand Manufacturers Association.

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Why Should Women Hunt?

The number of women taking up hunting is growing. Healthy, sustainable food sources (you know where it came from!), exercise, conservation, simply the challenge...all are reasons that more women are learning to hunt and especially bow hunting, with its added challenge and the submersion into nature that it demands.

Maria Young is from southern Iowa and a member of the Dressed to Kill TV Pro Staff. She recently spoke at a Women in Hunting workshop at Bass Pro Shops Altoona. She appreciates the world of nature that takes place around her when she's hunting and her enthusiasm for hunting is contagious.

When asked why women should hunt, Young notes right away that "it's not a man's world," it's fun, and ANY woman can do it. However, in this brief YouTube clip, she also adds there are a two other reasons that are especially important for women who are also moms:

For more information on how to get started in bow hunting, visit this post from our own Hunting Associate Alicia Bricker, or stop in at your local Bass Pro Shop!

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Find Maria Young on Facebook - www.facebook.com/mariayoungdtk?fref=ts

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This Weekend @ Bass Pro Shops Altoona - Local Hunting Tips and Seminars

Our Fall Hunting Classic wraps up this weekend with seminars from our local experts and hunting team. The first 25 people (18 or older) who attend the seminars on Friday and Saturday receive a Fall Hunting Classic tumbler!  The first 25 Sunday seminar attendees (18 or older) receive a free safety whistle. All seminars take place Fall Hunting Classic - Bass Pro Shops Altoonaback by the Hunting Department.

 

Friday, August 15

Fall Hunting Classic Seminar

  • 7:00 pm. - So You Think You Know How to Bow Hunt - Led by Hunting Lead and bow hunter Nick Aldrich.

Saturday, August 16 and Sunday August 17

  • Fall Hunting Classic Seminars
    • 1:00pm – Autumn Hunt: New Approaches to Fall Success - Find out what's new this year from our Hunting Lead Nick Aldrich.
    • 2:00pm – Tender Venison? It’s Easier Thank You Think - Learn from the experts from the renowned Milo Locker, a favorite of Central Iowans!
    • 3:00pm – Does Camo Pattern Really Matter? With Hunting Lead Nick Aldrich
    • 4:00pm – Why You Should be Hunting Coyote - Presented by Jake Slings from the Iowa DNR
    • 5:00pm – How to Integrate Your Game Camera with Mobile Devices presented by Hunting Manager Shaun Bequeaith

 

Additional Fun This Weekend

►10 a.m. - 2 p.m. - Test drive a Bad Boy Buggy! Must have driver's license and be 18 or older.

►Our Own Little State Fair Flavors

Saturday, Noon- 4 p.m. - Try a sample of our Flossie's funnel cakes!

Sunday, Noon-4 p.m. - Sample our corn dogs made with Flossie's Corn Dog Mix!

►Saturday, 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. - The Grill Shack is open! All proceeds go to the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation!

 

COMING UP?

Labor Day Hometown Festival event the weekend of August 30-31, from Noon – 5pm - All kinds of fun activities for children and families to enjoy!!

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Developing Your Deer Dog

People kept asking - "Can you train that same dog that you've trained to shed hunt, to track wounded game, too?"

A question asked of Jeremy Moore so often that he created a simple product offshoot for his growing DogBone product line...the Game Recovery System Dog Training Kit.

Moore was at Bass Pro Shops Altoona recently for the Fall Hunting Classic "Hunting University." He says 99% of the dogs he trains now do both - shed hunting and game recovery. Moore has years of work with upland and gun dogs. He says the process uses a different scent than upland game birds, but the reward is similar.

Moore says what it boils down to is that a good game recovery dog is nothing more than an excellent problem solver. In this brief YouTube video clip, Moore explains the kit:

Moore says it's important to remember that it's the handler's responsibility to introduce and explose the dog to as many scent elements as possible, plus make sure it's incremental training...build off the last lesson.  Last, but not least, experience is the only way your dog will truly be "finished" as a game recovery dog.

Remember, using dogs to track wounded game is NOT legal in all states, so you need to check with your state natural resources agency if you are not aware of the laws.

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Shed Dog Training - Three Keys to Remember

Training dogs for shed hunting is becoming more popular each year. At the recent Fall Hunting Classic at Bass Pro Shops Altoona, Jeremy Moore from DogBone "shed" some light on the basics of getting your dog started through training.

First, the training needs to start from the moment you bring that puppy home, but working to put them in a calm state of mind. As Moore says, training a dog is nothing more than forming habits through repetition and consistency. It's much easier to train a dog from the beginning with good habits rather than try to break them of old habits...just like people!

While training should be consistent, it should also be incremental. Build off the last training that you did...a little bit at a time. You know puppies don't have a great attention span, so don't overload their little brains!

Moore says that his shed hunting system is focused on three basic steps - Getting the dog use to the shape of an antler, the smell of an antler, and the feel of an antler, which is an especially important aspect for young dogs. Find out more in this brief YouTube clip:

The DogBone Shed Antler Retrieving System includes a dummy antler and scent, along with a book the Moore wrote, outlining the three-step process. You can purchase the system at Bass Pro Shops Altoona or online at www.basspro.com.

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Blind Calling for Whitetails

At the recent Bass Pro Shops Altoona Fall Hunting Classic, Bric Steward from Drury Outdoors "Bow Madness" gave some great information about hunting mature whitetails. One technique he calls "amazing" is blind calling or growling for bucks.

Blind calling is just what it says - you're calling when there are no deer in sight. You just take a chance that some mature buck out there is itching to pick a fight, so, it's only done at certain times. Bric explains in this brief YouTube video clip!

Check out another video tip from Bric on the question - Ground Blind versus Tree Stand!

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Ground Blind versus Tree Stand?

The Fall Hunting Classic national pros always bring a wealth of information and experience! Bric Steward, from the Drury Outdoors "Bow Madness" team, led off our speakers recently, visiting with the audience about hunting mature whitetails. From decoys to calling bucks, he walked through the different keys to remember for all whitetail hunting seasons, early through late.

He says one of the best questions he had all weekend was, "What's better to hunt with...tree stand or blind?" Here's his answer in this brief YouTube clip!

Steward also talked about blind calling or using a call when he doesn't see any deer in sight. He would only do this in the pre-rut or rut, when the bucks have their mind on being the "baddest buck in the woods!"

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This Weekend @ Bass Pro Shops Altoona - Fall Hunting Classic Continues!

Fall Hunting Classic - Bass Pro Shops Altoona

The Fall Hunting Classic continues this weekend at Bass Pro Shops Altoona and we have activities JUST for the kids - our Next Generation of hunters - and our new Women's Hunting workshop!

Thursday, August 7Binocular/Rangefinder trade-in

August 7 - The Binoculars & Rangefinder trade-in begins! Trade in your old binoculars or rangefinder and save up to $100 on a new one. Savings are based on the purchase price. Limit one coupon per new item. All items will be inspected to make sure they are in good working order, so we can donate them to local youth organizations.

Friday and Saturday, August 8 & 9 - Daily Specials! - Limited quantities - While Supplies Last - No rain checks!

Daily Specials August 8 - Bass Pro Shops AltoonaDaily Specials August 9 - Bass Pro Shops Altoona

Saturday, August 9

  • Next Generation Kid’s Weekend
    • Inflatable BB Gun range from Noon – 5pm
    • Free Craft Noon – 4pm located outside next to the BB range weather permitting - Rain location is inside in front of the aquarium
    • Free photo download (be on the cover of Bass Pro Shops Adventure Kids magazine) from Noon – 5pm located in the Fly Shop
    • Free fox drawstring bag to the first 100 kids to complete a punch card - which is the BB gun range and the photo.

Plus these exciting new workshops!

2:00 p.m. and 4 p.m. – A workshop just for kids - Fall in the Outdoors!

Women's Hunting Workshop - Bass Pro Shops AltoonaWomen’s Hunting Workshop – SATURDAY ONLY - 3 p.m.- Join us to welcome Maria Young from Dressed to Kill TV!  Attendees can enter for a chance to win a pair of Oculus binoculars and a Redhead folding knife - two winners will be drawn.

Maria Young - Dressed to Kill TV

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sunday, August 10

Next Generation Kid’s Weekend Fun continues!

  • Inflatable BB Gun range from Noon – 5pm
  • Free Craft Noon – 4pm located outside next to the BB range weather permitting - Rain location is inside in front of the aquarium
  • Free photo download (be on the cover of Bass Pro Shops Adventure Kids magazine) from Noon – 5pm located in the Fly Shop
  • Free fox drawstring bag to the first 100 kids to complete a punch card - which is the BB gun range and the photo.
  • 2:00 p.m. and 4 p.m. – A workshop just for kids - Fall in the Outdoors!

Try Before You Buy

Saturday, Noon-4 p.m. - Sample Uncle Buck's Batter with fried pickles
Sunday, Noon-4 p.m. - Sample Uncle Buck's Chicken Batter from Noon – 4pm

Coming Up?

The Fall Hunting Classic wraps up with one more weekend of great in-house seminars on a variety of hunting topics August 15–17. Customers who attend each seminar get a great free giveaway!

Bad Boy Buggy test drive available on August 16, 10 a.m.–2 p.m.!

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Product Spotlight - University of Iowa Hawkeye Apparel from Columbia

Just a couple of weeks until college football season starts and we have new attire for University of Iowa Hawkeye fans!Columbia Hawkeye outerwear

Columbia has come out with some outerwear sure to keep you toasty on those fall football Saturdays when there's just a bit of crispness in the air.

There are jackets for ladies and men. There is rainwear for both and there are fleece jackets. The yellow vest for ladies features Omni-Heat technology to keep your body even warmer...perfect layered with a heavy turtleneck and some good base layer.

All of the pieces have Iowa or Hawkeyes written across the back, so everyone will know YOU are a Hawkeye fan!

Not available online...only available at Bass Pro Shops Altoona!

  Columbia Hawkeye apparel from Bass Pro Shops AltoonaColumbia Hawkeye apparel at Bass Pro Shops AltoonaHawkeye outerwear from ColumbiaColumbia Hawkeye apparel at Bass Pro Shops Altoona

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Outdoor Cooking Primer - Summertime Salsa

Had the first tomato from our garden the other night! We've had a couple of jalapenos, too. Of course, that means it's time to start making salsa...a cold salsa that's a quick fix and does NOT last long. Enjoy!

Summertime Salsa

Summertime Salsa

3 big hopped tomatoes (Celebrity work great, or five big Romas)   

Snipped fresh cilantro

1 small onion finely chopped (green onions are good, too!)

1 jalapeno seeded and cut up (be daring - use two or three!)

1 clove minced garlic

1/2 tsp sugar and 1/4 tsp salt

2 Tbsp lemon or lime juice

Smoked paprika (optional)

 

Combine everything together in a mixing bowl. You can store it up to two weeks covered and refrigerated.

But, it won’t last that long.

 

 

 

 

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This Weekend at Bass Pro Shops Altoona - Hunting Classic Kicks Off!

Fall Hunting Classic Bass Pro Shops Altoona

Saturday, August 2! Fall Hunting Classic

We welcome these National Pros for our free Hunting University!

1 p.m. - Bric Steward, Drury Outdoors - "Hunting Mature Whitetails"
From Illinois and an avid whitetail and turkey hunter. Bric has been hunting since a young age and started filming his hunts in 1995.

2 p.m. - John Dudley, Host of Nock On® TV and UA® Arsenal Hunter - "Guaranteed Always Lethal"  His archery background has taken him around the world. Host of Nock On TV and the Nock On Podcast, an elite level archery coach, and an all-around ambassador for archery. His seminar last year was on target with great information for beginners and advanced.

3 p.m. - Jeremy Moore, Renowned Trainer and Developer of DogBone Training Products - "Developing Your Deer Dog." Jeremy returns to Bass Pro Shops Altoona! He'll be joined by Timber, the Headhunters dog and Tailer, the Whitetails Unlimited mascot, who will be put through a few paces as Jeremy talks about developing your deer dog for game recovery and shed hunting.

Hutning University Fall Hunting Classic BPS Altoona

 

August is Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation donation month at Bass Pro Shops Altoona! Members of the Central Iowa chapter of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation will be here to visit with you about how RMEF helps not only elk but habitat and wildlife in general.

August 1-6: Bow and Crossbow Trade-in!  Trade in your old crossbow or bow and save up to $100 on a new one. Savings are based on the purchase price. Limit one coupon per new item. All bows and crossbows will be inspected to make sure they are in good working order, so we can donate them to local youth organizations.

August 1 - 10 - Digs for Dogs Silent Auction! Digs for Dogs

Put your bid in for one of these two AWESOME donated, custom-built doghouses! Bidding open until 2 pm., August 10. We have a mini-Bass Pro Shops and a beautiful barn donated by Country Landscapes in Ames, Iowa. Digs for DogsDigs for Dogs - Bass Pro Shops Altoona

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sunday, August 3 - The Fall Hunting Classic continues with great sales, rebates, and special

 

COMING UP NEXT?

August 9 & 10 -  Next Generation weekend, with kids activities taking place from Noon – 5pm (BB gun range, craft, workshops, free photo download and giveaways!).

August 9 - Women’s hunting workshop!

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Bringing the Hunt to Life

On the Trail Tuesday - Bass Pro ShopsBy Dan Stephany, Receiving Manager

When I was a young boy, I couldn’t wait for the day that I would get to go hunting with my dad and older brother. We hunted on a large, family farm with my relatives in central Wisconsin, and deer were plentiful. I loved going to deer camp and hanging out with the "guys," especially when someone brought back a big buck to hang in the barn. I can remember being in deer camp the day my uncle shot the biggest buck any of us had ever seen, and I got to go with him to the taxidermy studio, where he was going to have it mounted.

Ever since that first encounter with my uncle’s deer, I have had a fascination with taxidermy. I love seeing how a taxidermist can seemingly bring the animal back to life. This was never more true than on a whitetail I harvested several years ago, while hunting with my dad and brother on my dad’s property in Wisconsin. At the time, it was the largest whitetail I had ever harvested and larger than anything my dad or brother had ever taken. I remember walking up on the animal with my brother and him asking me the question, “So, you gonna get it mounted?” Without much hesitation, an excited “YES!” came out.

I took it to a well-known taxidermist and picked out a pose. I was beyond excited to get it back, and when the phone call came telling me it was done, I raced over to the studio to pick it up. Seeing the detail in the eyes and face made it look alive -- it was captivating. At that moment, I began toying with the idea of taking a class and learning how to mount my own deer.

That opportunity became a reality when I was talking with one of the archery specialists here at Bass Pro Shops. It turned out that he was a taxidermist, and offered a class in his studio where I could learn how to mount a single species of my choice. After talking through the details, I signed up for his class and took the plunge. 

My first mount was going to be a deer I had harvested with a bow and was already done as a European mount. The rack could be used simply by cutting it off the skull, but I had to buy a new cape for the deer as I didn’t have the original one. The mount turned out pretty decent, with a great deal learned in the process and made a few mistakes along the way. All things considered, I was pleased with how my first attempt turned out. 

My second effort was a buck I harvested a year ago during late muzzleloader season here in Iowa. We nicknamed him "Goofy" simply because of all his missing hair, scars on his face, and the fact that only one of his tines measured more than Bass Pro Shops Altoona - Bringing the Hunt to Lifesix inches long! I knew it wouldn’t be the prettiest mount ever done, but it would be a great experience continuing to learn the art of taxidermy.

This time around was much smoother. It helps that my friend is an excellent teacher. He was patient with me as I decided on ear position, eye details and everything else that goes into making the deer come back to life the way I remembered him from the hunt. Only the finishing touches are left to make before he is ready to hang with the others on my wall.

I am by no means a professional taxidermist now. However, I can say that, with the help of my friend, I know the process of how to mount a whitetail deer. Since diving behind the scenes, and seeing what artistry goes into a mount, I am more fascinated than ever before and excited to share the knowledge with my young son Micah. I can’t wait to see what this season holds for us as we pursue some mature whitetails and hopefully add another mount to our wall.

Bass Pro Shops Altoona - Eyes set & antlers mountedGoofy right after setting the eyes and mounting the antlers to the form.

 

                                                             Test fitting the cape to make sure everything lines up - Bass Pro Shops Altoona

         

 

 

Test fitting his cape to make sure everything lines up.

 

 

                                        Cape sewn on and first eye set - Bass Pro Shops Altoona

Getting closer to the end! Here Goofy has the cape sewn on and the first eye set before getting tacked down and air-brushed. You can really see how beat up his cape is in this picture.

 

 

 

 

 

Ready to go home! Brining the Hunt to Life-Bass Pro Shops Altoona

 

Goofy is ready for the trip to my house. He turned out great and now hangs next to the other deer at my house.

 

 

 

Thank you to my friend Jackson Tennant, owner of Woods to Walls Taxidermy, for sharing his passion and expertise with me. This dream would not have become a reality without him.

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