Utah Hamfest awaits July 29-31

Utah's Amateur Radio enthusiasts are invited to attend Utah Hamfest 2005 at Ruby's Inn, near Bryce Canyon this year. Events include seminars, learning activities, contests, games, a swap meet, and great food. Events and activities also await non-hams. Registrations are still available, but are going fast. For more information visit http://www.utahhamfest.org .

Willard Bay offers great access

Willard Bay Reservoir is at full capacity and is predicted to remain so until early August. Day-use fees are $9 per vehicle with up to eight people and recently renovated camping facilities are available from $14 to $20 per night. Facilities include modern restrooms, hot showers, and sewage hookups in Willow Creek and Cottonwood campgrounds. A new overnight group-use area is available for $3 per person per night with picnic tables, covered pavilion, grills, restrooms, and drinking water.

A number of dead carp are turning up at Willard Bay State Park, but visitors should know public health is not in danger. According to the Division of Wildlife Resources, the recent die off may be due to spawning stress, and is likely not disease, as other species have not been affected.

Archery Permits going fast

Utah's 2005 general archery buck deer hunt begins Aug. 20, but permits are going fast this year. In 2004, for the first time ever, Utah archery buck deer permits sold out before the general hunt ended (permits sold out on Aug. 30, nine days into the 28-day hunt).

To ensure hunters get a permit this year, Division of Wildlife Resources officials are encouraging them to buy their permits as soon as possible. "General deer hunting permits are selling out in Utah earlier and earlier every year," says Judi Tutorow, wildlife licensing coordinator for the DWR. "Plenty of archery permits are available right now, and we encourage hunters to get them before they're gone."

As of July 20, more than 6,600 statewide general archery buck deer permits were still available. Permits may be purchased at the DWR's Web site ( http://www.wildlife.utah.gov ), at DWR offices and from more than 190 hunting license agents statewide. For more information, call the nearest Division of Wildlife Resources office or the DWR's Salt Lake City office at (801) 538-4700.
One-Time Orientation Course must be completed Before Applying for a Swan Permits

A major change awaits Utah's swan hunters this year. Those who haven't completed the state's one-time swan hunting orientation course must complete the course before they can apply for a permit.

The course takes approximately 20 to 30 minutes to complete and is available online at the Division of Wildlife Resources' Web site ( http://www/wildlife.utah.gov ). The course must be taken one time and hunters who have already completed the course do not need to take it again.
In the past, hunters could wait to learn whether they drew a permit before taking the course.

"We ran into two problems," commented Tom Aldrich, waterfowl coordinator for the DWR. "Because hunters would take the course over a period of several weeks, we were having to do weekly mailings to get permits to hunters as they completed the course. About 100 to 150 permits also were being wasted every year by hunters who drew a permit but never completed the course so their permit could be issued to them."

Utah's swan application period begins Aug. 2, and hunters who haven't completed the course are encouraged to complete it as soon as possible. Applications to hunt tundra swans in Utah this fall will be available by Aug. 2 from hunting license agents, Division of Wildlife Resources offices and hunter education centers and the DWR's Web site ( http://www.wildlife.utah.gov ).

Applications must be received no later than Aug. 16 (either by 5 p.m. through the mail or by 11 p.m. over the Internet) to be included in the draw for permits. When the Utah Wildlife Board meets Aug. 11, it's likely that the DWR will recommend a total of 2,000 permits for the hunt and that the tundra swan season run from Oct. 1 to Dec. 11.

Hunters who have a major credit card can apply for a permit online at the DWR Web site. Hunters who don't have a major credit card must mail their application in. Results of the tundra swan draw will be posted by Sept. 7. For more information, call the nearest Division of Wildlife Resources office or the DWR's Salt Lake City office at (801) 538-4700.

Early Bird Discounts available for Hogle Zoo

Beat the heat and get to Utah's Hogle Zoo early! In an effort to help guests avoid the heat of the day, the Zoo is encouraging visits in the early morning. To attract the "early bird," Hogle Zoo is offering a special admission price, any two people for $10 before 10 a.m.

This special "two-for-$10 before 10 a.m.," allows any two guests admission for $10 if they arrive before 10 a.m. The discount is good every day through Aug. 31 and is not valid with any other offer or discount. The morning hours offer guests the chance to see the Zoo as it wakes up. The animals are often more active in the cooler morning hours.

Hogle Zoo is open from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. daily. For more information about the discount, visit the Hogle Zoo website, http://www.hoglezoo.org or call (801) 584-1729.
Fire Restrictions announced

Due to an increasingly high fire danger throughout much of Utah, federal and state fire management officials have announced fire restrictions, which apply to State of Utah, Bureau of Land Management, and private lands in Box Elder, Tooele, Juab and Millard counties, and lands west of Interstate 15 in Salt Lake, Utah, Beaver and Iron counties.

This fire restriction does not apply to National Forest lands. Fire restrictions are already in effect in Washington County. Fire restrictions will remain in effect until rescinded. The following acts are prohibited on the above-mentioned lands:

1. Setting, building, maintaining, attending, or using open fire of any kind, except campfires within approved fire pits and grills provided for, in improved campgrounds, picnic areas, and permanently improved places of habitation, or except as otherwise authorized. Devices fueled by petroleum or liquid propane gas (LPG) products are allowed in all locations.

2. Smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle, camp trailer, or building, a developed recreation site, or while stopped in an area at least three feet in diameter that is barren or cleared to mineral soil.

3. Discharging, or using any kind of fireworks, tracer ammunition, or other incendiary devices in any location on federal, state, and unincorporated private lands. (Note that these acts are always prohibited on Federal Lands.)

All other fire restrictions, or necessary exemptions to the restrictions, will be handled through local "permits" issued by the responsible agency for that purpose. The order does not affect incorporated towns and cities. For more information on fire restrictions go to http://www.utahfireinfo.gov .

Hunters May Learn Antlerless Draw Results a Variety of Ways

Results of Utah's 2005 Antlerless Big Game Draw, and a list of hunting permits not taken in the draw, will be available July 28. Successful applicants should receive their permit in the mail by this date. All who applied should receive a list of permits that were not taken in the draw and the list should arrive in the mail or via e-mail.

Permits not taken in the draw will be available for purchase Aug. 2, beginning at 8 a.m. Permits will be available at the Division of Wildlife Resources' Web site ( http://www.wildlife.utah.gov ), at DWR offices and from more than 190 hunting license agents statewide.

Beginning at 8 a.m. on July 28, results of the draw, and a list of permits not taken in the draw, also will be available at the DWR Web site ( http://www.wildlife.utah.gov ) or by calling the Utah Wildlife Administrative Services office at 1-800-221-0659.

Those with questions may call the Utah Wildlife Administrative Services Office, the nearest Division of Wildlife Resources office or the DWR's Salt Lake City office at (801) 538-4700.
Safe Hunting Preparedness Class offered

A safe hunting preparedness class will be presented by Sportsman's Warehouse at the Ogden Nature Center Aug 6 from 1-2 p.m.. This free workshop will focus on safety tips for hunting enthusiasts of all levels. $10 off of $50 purchase gift certificates to Sportsman's Warehouse will also be given away. The Ogden Nature Center is located at 966 W. 12th Street in Ogden

Festival of American West begins this Weekend

Mountain men, Dutch oven cooking, Native American dancing and more can be enjoyed Aug 3- 6, at the 34th annual Festival of the American West, taking place in Wellsville, near Logan.

This award winning festival offers a realistic look at life of settlers in the state of Utah. Visitors can expect to see a gathering of historic reenactors, ranging from mountain men, military, Indians, craftspeople, entertainers, and food vendors, who demonstrate life skills of the Old West. The fair features a Native American village, mountain man rendezvous, military encampment, pioneer settlement, heritage craft demonstrators, and a cowboy shoot-out. In addition Benny Martinez and Napoleon will offer their trick roping show.

The Native American Village will feature the Star Road Dance Company. The company has had the privilege of employing many champion dancers with nationally recognized skills in both Native American song and dance. The dancers featured are also professionals in beadwork, regalia construction, Indian song and have competed professionally in Native American dance competitions.

This 160 acre 1917 farm site hosts numerous activities which includes demonstrations in sausage making, oxen driving, harnessing work horses, tanning hides, and weaving. Visitors may tour the farmhouse and learn about food preservation, broom making, lace making, churning butter, and life at the turn of the century. Dugouts, cabins, tepees, and a military encampment are also available to tour. Frontier soldiers, and the Fife and Drum Corp will be dressed in full blue uniforms to round out the Military encampment. Visitors may watch the 100-year old Gatling gun and cannon demonstrations throughout the day. Other highlights include wood carving, blacksmith work, antiques vendors and panning for gold. Free wagon rides are offered to help visitors see the sights.

This year's Festival of the American West will showcase a Wild West Show, hosted by historian Jim Dunham, from the History Channel's Tales of the Gun and the famous Americanas of Rexburg, Idaho, an equestrian group known for its precision drill horseback riding, flag ceremonies and Roman riders. In addition it will feature the sharp shooting skills of Annie Oakley, an original performer in Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show. Visitors will learn about how she became the best female sharpshooter, about her career with the Wild West Show and her relationship with Sitting Bull. Visitors will watch how the Pony Express, which was only in service from April 1860 to November 1861 transported the mail, mail which included important documents such as Lincoln's Inaugural address.

Performing Artists at this year's Festival of the American West include the Academy of Western Artists Western Male Vocalist of the Year, Brenn Hill; the 2004 Patsy Montana National Yodeling Champion, Carin Lechner; National Heritage Fellow and world renown cowboy poet, Glenn Ohrlin; National Heritage Fellows from the Dragon Art Studio doing Chinese rod puppetry, Yuqin Wang and Zhengli Xu; the Wild Coyotes of Pocatello, Idaho; and local artists and musicians "Lefty" Peterson, Scott McKendrick, Stampede, Leaping Lulu, Root Beer Reunion, Wellsville Mountain Aires, Cinnamon Creek, the Hancock Family Band, Blue Sage, Mike Iverson, and Jared & Mark Bennett.
The festival is open from 11 a.m. - 9 p.m. and tickets can be purchased at the gate with $15 for adults, $12 for seniors and students 12 years to college (with college ID), and $10 for children ages 3 to 11. Concert tickets, which include one day admission to the Festival are $25 for adults, $20 for seniors and students and $15 for children three to 11. A family pass is also available for $50 that includes 2 adults with all dependant children under the age of 18. Children ages two and under are free. Local newspapers offer discount coupons. Parking is free.

Chosen nine years in a row as one of the top 100 events in North America by the American Bus Association, the Festival of the American West is packed with hands-on educational entertainment. The American West Heritage Center is located on Highway 89-91, located 72 miles north of Salt Lake City in Wellsville and six miles south of Logan. For more information, call the American West Center at 1 (800) 225-FEST or check out their website at http://www.americanwestcenter.org/ or http://www.awhc.org .