Pheasants will be the focus this weekend in the south-central Minnesota city of Madelia, as the community hosts the third annual 2013 Governor’s Pheasant Hunting Opener, on Friday, Oct. 11 and Saturday, Oct. 12.
Friday is filled with activities for the public. These include:
- 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. – Shotgun shooting events including sporting clays, trap and duck flurry.
- 4 p.m. – Dedication of a veteran’s memorial.
- 4:30 p.m. – “Best of the best shooting tournament” featuring the world’s top four shotgun exhibition shooters.
- 6 p.m. – Governor’s reception and banquet.
- 9 p.m. – Free concert by Martin Zellar and the Hardways.
On Saturday, a community breakfast starting at 6:30 a.m. at the VFW/American Legion, and public land dedication at noon, will bookend a morning of pheasant hunting. A special hunt with Wounded Warriors will take place on land restored by the city of Madelia for accessible hunting.
“We are proud to host this event and look forward to showcasing Madelia as the ‘Pheasant Capital of Minnesota,’” said Dan Madsen, Madelia city administrator.
He pointed out there are 8,600 acres of public hunting land within 20 miles of Madelia. Pheasant research for the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is headquartered in the community. Madelia also hosts the state’s longest running annual pheasant celebration.
The Madelia event is the third annual Governor’s Pheasant Hunting Opener, initiated by Gov. Mark Dayton in 2011. Previous host communities were Montevideo and Marshall. The event highlights the many hunting, recreational, travel and local opportunities that host communities have to offer visitors.
The event is being coordinated by city of Madelia, Madelia Chamber of Commerce, Explore Minnesota Tourism and the DNR.
Madelia has a population of 2,319. It is located less than 20 minutes west of Mankato and just 90 minutes southwest of Minneapolis.
Statewide, more than 80,000 hunters are expected to hunt pheasants this year. Collectively, more than a half-million residents and nonresidents hunt in Minnesota each year, contributing an estimated $725 million to the state’s economy.
More information can be found online.