Hunter Education MONTHLY NEWS

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In This Issue:

Coordinator's Column - "Roses & Thorns!"


In December, I was able to guide at a youth hunt (See Youth Hunt article below.) led by Area Chief HE Instructor, Junior Munoz, Aransas National Wildlife Refuge (NWR). He and NWR staff put on an excellent hunt for Furr High School students involved in Outdoor Education with TPWD. 

During Saturday night's fireside activity, as with most Texas Youth Hunting Program TYHP hunts, students and volunteers offered up their "Roses & Thorns" for the experiences they shared that day...good memories and a few not-so-good, teachable moments.  As I listened intently to each young man's or woman's account, I found myself choking up at times from the shear passion being poured out of these impressionable, yet capable souls.  As with all fireside moments, I left this one knowing that WHAT WE DO MAKES A REAL DIFFERENCE IN PEOPLE'S LIVES! Whether it was a first deer harvest, a hunter education activity, fighting off wasps and bees or a memory of camping out with friends and family, most of these students' roses played testimony to what TYHP and YOU do for all Texans.  #4334

That is what the HOLIDAY SPIRIT is all about, and I'm elated that we do so many youth hunts this time of year.  It makes one's heart full to GIVE BACK knowledge, skills and TIME, especially during the holiday season. 

- Here's wishing you/your families a personal "Merry Christmas & Happy New Year"!

Steve Hall, Hunter Education Coordinator

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A New Program (SAR) and Trainers in Texas!


The new Student Air Rifle (SAR) Program is now in Texas!  Modeled after the National Archery in Schools Program, SAR brings air rifle safety, handling and shooting skills to thousands of school students in grades 4-12.  The Texas State Rifle Association Foundation is the primary sponsor/partner in Texas.

(L to R) Denise Harmel-Garza, Brock Minton, Sharon Cundiff, Larry Hysmith, Randy Spradlin, Steve Hall, Heidi Rao, Morgan Harbison, Monica Bickerstaff and Angela Gerlich were certified as the 1st Basic Air Riflery Instructor Trainers. 

teachers SAR

The first Texas Basic Air Riflery Instructors were certified in November at Edward Roberson Middle School in Houston. (L to R): Jake Hindman - National SAR President/CEO, Lloyd Love – Pasadena Memorial HS, Randy Larson – Baytown Goose Creek Memorial HS, Sam Stanley – Sulphur Bluff ISD, Laurie Aubin – South Houston HS, Debra Lang – Sam Rayburn HS, David Baxter – Spring ISD and Jan Morris, SAR Program Manager.  Special thanks to David Baxter for setting us up in Houston. The second teacher training opportunity will likely be in January in Dallas. Be on the watch for next month's online newsletter!  #22938

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PRIZES for Reading Target Talk -- Bringing it Back!

Waterfowl Hunters

Hunter Education Instructor certification numbers are hidden throughout Target Talk! It is our way, this holiday season, to once again reward those of you who simply read this newsletter. Since I do not hear from most of you, I would like to know that you are at least paying attention to the monthly happenings. Be on the watch for YOUR HE INSTRUCTOR # tucked away within these articles! Email/call (512-389-8142) to claim your prize TODAY!  Let's try it out ... # 20460 - Steve Hall

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TYHP and Mentor Hunts Going Strong in Dec/Jan.


Youth "SUPERHUNT" Near Stonewall - to be held January 4-6, 2019 - Over 60 hunters will join us the first weekend in January for the "Superhunt" involving as many as 16 ranches/landowners, 60 volunteers and 60 parents/guardians -- 200 folks coming for the 16th time!  Be sure to get trained as a TYHP "Huntmaster" or come as a volunteer Hunter Education Instructor! 

Hunt 1

Rancho Tio Moya - King Ranch

(L to R) Back Row Guides/Adults: Megan Kolbe (TYHP Huntmaster), Oscar Galindo, Victor Cantu, Danny Sanchez, TJ Villa, Bryan Storm, Oscar Salinas. Front Row Hunters: Audrey Galindo, Gabriel Cantu, Quisto Sanchez, Tyler Villa, Camryn Storm, Emma Snelson, Maria Snelson, Roel Salinas

N TX Hunter Education Specialist Monica Bickerstaff coordinated and assisted the U.S. Army Corps of Engineer’s Lake Whitney (R) and Lake Waco (below) youth/mentor deer hunts.  Whitney hunt - Irving Police Athletic League youth (14) and their coaches used crossbows to harvest 17 deer.

Hunt 2
Hunt 3

To left, TPWD Archery specialist Travis Glick and Area Chief, Brent Heath, Waco, were on hand along with other Central TX HE Instructors.  L to R: (Kneeling) Stephen Brandstat, Dane Vaurecka (2nd Row) Deborah Davison, Eric Gonzalez, Noah Vanness, Luke Tittley, Howard Wheeler (Back Row) Brent Heath, Jeff White, James Fairchild, Travis Glick, Monica Bickerstaff, Pat Davison

Hunt 4

One doe and three nice bucks were taken by Furr High School youth hunters on Sunday morning during the Aransas NWR Youth Hunt.  Thanks to HE Area Chief, Junior Munoz, Austwell, and the staff at Aransas National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) for hosting the hunt for the new hunters.

Hunt 5
Hunt 6

TPWD Game Warden, Scott McLeod (L) and Hunter Ed Area Chief, Junior Munoz watch as Furr High School youth mentors and hunters learn fire starting techniques prior to the morning and afternoon hunts held at Aransas NWR in early December. The NWR also hosts wounded warrior and other hunts as part of hunting access on national refuges.  Thanks U.S. Fish &Wildlife Service!


Vincent Lecca, Buda, ran a TYHP Youth Hunt in early December at New Home, TX. Six hunters were drawn and all harvested between one to 4 whitetails or axis does.  One 10-year old girl harvested 4 deer to fill up her family's freezer.  Wow!



Brock Minton, S TX Hunter Education Specialist traveled to his homeland in West Texas to assist on an adult mentor hunt for Wounded Warriors program.

(L to R) Richard Tucker (Wounded Warrior-Iraq), Chase & Tammara Currie Each hunter harvested a nice management buck on a private ranch in Concho County.   

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Target Range Grant Program News


AUSTIN, TEXAS (Nov. 30, 2018) South Texas College (STC) is partnering with the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) to construct an indoor target range at the College’s new Regional Center for Public Safety Excellence in Pharr. During a press conference held November 29 at the Texas State Capitol, South Texas College was awarded $307, 219 for the planning phase of a 13,300 sq. ft. indoor 12-lane target range through TPWD’s Target Range Grant Program.

Upon completion of the planning phase and environmental compliance, South Texas College is eligible to receive a grant for the construction of the range in the amount of $2,447,382, totaling to $2,754,601 in grant funds. This grant funding is provided by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, supported by sportsmen’s dollars derived from the sale of hunting licenses and federal excise taxes on sporting arms and ammunition as authorized by the Pittman-Robertson Act.  #22122

The target range will be open to the public for firearms safety training, practice shooting, and skills development. In addition to the target range, the College will also provide educational opportunities, including face-to-face Hunter Education courses approved by TPWD and led by certified Hunter Education instructors.

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Hunter Ed Happenings - Instructor Photos


Brent Beamsderfer, Dayton, selected his RIFLE INCENTIVE AWARD at Bass Pro Shops in Pearland this past fall -- a .223 with a 3x9x40 scope -- using his Texas Hunter Education Instructor Association (THEIA) Gift Card. Brent said, " Thank you (THEIA and TPWD Hunter Education Program) for all you do and all the support over the years. Very much appreciated!"


Area Chief, Jose Garcia, Irving, took this nice ram last fall with his .50 cal. black powder pistol!  Knowing that Jose teaches many classes in the DFW area and hosts many youth hunts, it is nice to see that he GETS OUT, himself, to enjoy the fruits of his labor. We hope all of you instructors get outdoors and go hunting, then share your memories with the rest of us! CONGRATS Jose!

Bob B

Bob Barnette, TYHP Regional Director and HE Instructor, Dallas, shares this story from a TYHP bow hunter: #1807

"Andrew was fortunate to be drawn for the Comanche Ranch hunt last month and were we blown away by this hunt!...

...I really want you and the staff at TYHP to know how grateful I am. I did not grow up hunting, no one in my immediate family hunts and I did not grow up around guns.  But I have always loved the outdoors.  Growing up on the coast in south Texas I have always loved fishing and I began taking my boys fishing with me when they were only 3 or 4 years old.  But as they got older I began looking for opportunities to take them hunting.  In 2013, I had a few possibilities but nothing really panned out like I had hoped.  I remember telling my wife, "I AM going to find a way to take our boys hunting next season."  I remembered that one my friends had told me about a youth hunting program years earlier.  After some internet searching I found TYHP.

I know with as many hunts as TYHP hosts now there must be a tremendous amount of work being done to make it all happen.  I just wanted to take a minute and say thank you for all of that hard work.  TYHP has positively impacted my family in a way that I know will continue for generations and I am grateful."

Take care, John Lewis 


Duke Walton, Porter, presented a Certificate of Appreciation (COA) to the East Montgomery Improvement District on Nov.8th for donating their facility to conduct an Instructor Course. (L to R) Frank McCrady - President/CEO, Katherine Persson - Asst. Secretary, Duke Walton, and Brenda Webb - Chairman of the Board Duke also presented a COA to V.F.W. Post 4816 Commander, Ron Miller, Porter, for donating their facility for a student course in October.  If you would like to present a COA to anyone, please contact in Austin!

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NASP Update - Scholarships & Western National


NASP ® Mission Accomplished, One Scholarship at a Time

Excerpt from NASP News Release by Brittany J Jones, October 22, 2018

Since NASP ®’s inception, just under 1.8 million dollars in cash scholarships have been awarded to its student archers. A total of 351 scholarships have been awarded to top NASP® performers at the national and state bulls-eye tournaments. Since 2015, twenty states, including Texas, and Canada also have awarded $490,450, and the parent NASP ® organization has matched $321,700 of those funds. #22817

According to recent surveys, representing more than two million participants, NASP ® is working for the students, conservation, and the archery industry. Almost two-thirds of NASP® students have purchased or plan to purchase their own personal, non-NASP® bow. More than fifty percent of NASP® students report having bow hunted or wanting to bow hunt but haven’t yet. On the conservation front, more than forty percent of NASP® students, after mastering archery, have taken or plan to take Hunter Safety Education with hopes to hunt or target shoot with firearms. Finally, fifty-eight percent of NASP® students say they feel more connected at school because of NASP®, and forty percent report working harder in the classroom because of the archery program. You can find the full student survey report at:

For more information on NASP®, please visit:

Photo: NASP® National Tournament Scholarship Recipients with Parents


NASP ® to host a Western National

NASP ® is excited to invite archers and archery teams from participating NASP ® schools, and friends and family to the 2019 Western Nationals. The tournament will take place April 26-27 at the Salt Lake City Exposition Center, Salt Lake City, Utah. Begun in 2018, the Western allow archers and their families who reside out west, a more convenient and accessible way to attend and participate at the national tournament. The highest-ranking archers will be invited to the scholarship shoot-off for $179,000 worth of scholarship money at the NASP ® Open & Championship this summer in Nashville, Tennessee, July 25-27, 2019. Additionally, students who attend the “western” may also qualify for the Nashville Open.  #29649

Individual archers and archery teams who advance from their state level tournament can register online at Preregistration begins March 11-29, 2019 and Registration begins April 4, 2019. NASP ® looks forward to a record-breaking turnout this spring! For more information on NASP ® and tournaments, please visit

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Recovering America's Wildlife


Proposed bipartisan national legislation — the Recovering America’s Wildlife Act, or RAWA could bring an estimated $60 million annually to Texas (out of $1.3 billion nationally) for natural resource conservation and outdoor recreation initiatives.

Texas Alliance for America’s Fish and Wildlife (TAAFW) has information covering what is RAWA and how organizations (e.g. BOW; THEIA) can join TAAFW.

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With Deepest of Sympathy from HE Community


Gilbert Graves, Jr., Corpus Christi, the 2016 Volunteer Hunter Education Instructor of the Year, passed away November 24th at 82 years of age.  He leaves behind his wife Lamarr of 56 years, and daughters, Michelle & Jennifer.

Gilbert was an Area Chief and served the Hunter Education Program since 1988, following in the footsteps of his father, Gilbert Sr.  He certified over 4,000 students, 200 new instructors and was inducted into the TX Hunter Education Hall of Fame in 2003.

We honor you Gilbert! -- A man of faith, a loving husband and father, a staunch supporter of the 2nd Amendment and a legacy in hunter education.  Prayers be with you and your family!


Michael Tyson, Spicewood, co-owner of the Austin Gun Club, passed away November 28th at the age of 51 from a long battle with metastatic prostate cancer. He was married for over 27 years to his wife, Laura, and leaves behind Meagan and David as well as Joseph Rogers, considered a "second son" in their lives.  Mike was certified as an instructor in 2008 and held courses at his facility including summer youth camps that featured hunter education, shooting sports and hunting hands-on instruction.  Prayers go out to the Tyson family and to Julie Clark, longtime friend, business partner at Austin Gun Club, THEIA board member and fellow hunter education instructor.

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A Message from Scholastic 3-D Archery (S3DA)

Scholastic 3-D Archery (S3DA) has created unique partnerships in the conservation, hunting, and shooting sports. S3DA students and coaches learn about the hunters’ place in conservation, including fair-chase ethics, modern bowhunting, the Pittman Robertson Act, and the North America Model of Wildlife Conservation. Students and coaches develop an appreciation for our proud hunting heritage.  We also incorporate a dead period between state archery seasons for S3DA competitions such as 3-D, and indoor and outdoor archery tournaments. These provide students the opportunity to shoot year-round.  Archers in grades 3-12 can participate as they grow and develop, helping them hone their archery skills, preparing them to continue shooting after they graduate from high school. College archery programs from across the country recruit S3DA students. .     

S3DA does not require any specific equipment. We standardize the tournament formats instead of the equipment involved. Students can choose to shoot any bow, sight, stabilizer or release that they want if they are within the rules for their shooting division and class.

Since its inception in 2012, S3DA has shown explosive growth in the United States and now has a student membership base of more than 4000 with 1,440 trained coaches in 40 states. In 2018, S3DA sanctioned 120 regional, 42 state, and 4 national events.  

New Mexico Department of Game and Fish is hosting an S3DA Advanced 3-D Archery Instructor Trainer Course at their Albuquerque headquarters on December 27-28.  The training will be conducted by our National Outreach Director, Chris McDonald. Currently, there is room for 5 more participants. If you are interested in participating, please contact me as soon as possible.

Sincerely, Jennie Richardson, Executive Director; 606-524-3687;

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Hunter Education Staff Contact Information

HE Staff

L to R:  Heidi SE, Randy W, Morgan C, Brock S, Steve HQ, and Monica N.


SE TX - Heidi Rao, Houston; 713-829-1377c

W TX - Randy Spradlin, Abilene; 512-923-3509 c

C TX - Morgan Harbison, College Station

S TX - Brock Minton, Corpus Christi; 361-825-3249 w; 361-944-3617 c

N TX - Monica Bickerstaff, Grand Prairie; 469-601-8349 c

TPWD HQ ADMIN (ACP) - 1340 Airport Commerce Dr., Bldg. 6-B, Austin, TX 78741

HE Coord. - Steve Hall,; 512-389-8140; 550-7330c

HE Asst. - Eddie Kleppinger; 512-389-8142

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TPWD & Texas Hunter Education Partner Resources

Hunter Education Overview | Instructor Resources | Student Resources

Operation Game Thief | Texas Game Warden Association

Texas Youth Hunting Program | Texas 4-H Shooting Sports

Other Hunter Ed Resources

International Hunter Education Association | NRA PROGRAMS & Services

NSSF Hunting & Ranges | Texas Hunter Education Instructor Association

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wildlife & sport fish restoration