The attendance was beyond expectations and every single event was up significantly in registrations and attendance.
We were selling tickets for the <1 Club at an unbelievable rate. When it came time for the beer bash/drawing, there were 800-900 people in the room!
The Ladies Lunch had a huge turnout and as always, those ladies had a blast.
The RAM awards were terrific and Tom Foss, the committee chair, clearly raised the bar, esp. by including personal comments on every award winner and his or her hunt and achievements. That really added a nice touch.
The Life Members' Breakfast blew us away. When I arrived at the room where the breakfast was being held @ 6:45 AM, I was freaking out when I learned how many tickets had been sold. We'd been hoping we might hit 400 and maybe even get to 425 if we got really lucky. So imagine our surprise when we learned we were at 499 and counting! The room was only set for 425, so the hotel added a few more tables, bringing the seating to 496. In addition to those 499, we had another dozen or so folks who wanted tickets standing patiently outside the door until everyone was seated, in hopes there might be a few seats still available. On Friday afternoon, we'd actually run out of tickets! But Gray said, "Hand write some out and we'll let them in." Very cool!
We'd only ordered 400 'table favors' and the hotel was only preparing breakfast for 425. Hence my concerns. "Where are they all going to sit?" "How can we feed 499 when we were planning for 425 at most?" "Are those who don't get table favors and maybe don't even get breakfast going be upset?"
Fortunately, it all worked out. Everyone got breakfast and no one complained about waiting in the buffet lines for a half-hour or more. In some ways, the whole thing actually turned out to be a positive thing. Everyone seemed to understand the issue and were actually excited that WSF members have so much enthusiasm and WSF has so much momentum that it created such a 'problem.'
When it came time for the sheep hunt drawing, unbelievably the first five names drawn were not present and therefore not eligible to win! After the first 'not present' name was drawn, Gray said to the crowd, "Sucks to be him," which brought a large laugh from everyone.
Finally, a name was drawn and the person was in the room. The winner was a guy from Idaho in his mid-fifties, and he went absolutely bonkers when he realized he'd won! He couldn't stop whooping and jumping up and down. The crowd was really happy for him and cheering him on. What made it even cooler was at the Wednesday night dinner, he'd gotten up on the stage with his girlfriend, got down on one knee and proposed to her. She said, "Yes!"
In addition to what we raised for sheep, we also raised a huge amount of money for our Wounded Warriors, which was very cool.
Our raffles smashed all records and our Youth Wildlife Conservation Experience hosted an amazing 1,300+ kids from northern Nevada!
I met a number of Bowsiters, which is always one of the highlights of The Sheep Show for me.
Hey, btw, Tom! You STILL owe me a beer! LOL!
Awesome for WSF and Putting Sheep on The Mountain
Good luck, Robb
Glad you liked it.
Your beautiful daughter, Michelle, stopped by the Membership booth on Saturday wanting to volunteer to help us out at the 2017 Sheep Show!
BTW, I've not seen you in ages, but I owe you a big "Thank You" as well. You were one of the referrals I called when I was considering doing a hunt with Tony Russ and you were the first sheep bowhunter I ever met. That was at the 2000 Sheep Show and you went out of your way to tell me what I needed to know and then introduce me to other hard core bowhunters,
That was my first sheep hunt and it not only got me hooked on sheep hunting, it also got me very interested in getting involved with wild sheep conservation.
Good seeing a bunch of guys that I first met at P&Y only a few months ago and then meeting a number of new guys this trip. Being a first time attendee to both the P&Y and Sheep show this past year, the people have impressed me the most. You would think I've known you guys forever. If anyone is ever questioning going to the shows, just do it. I went solo both trips and have met so many people it is crazy.
Thanks to everyone who let the new guy from MI join in the conversations over the past year and the extended help when asking about outfitters. Also, thanks to everyone putting the show on because without you there wouldn't be a place to network so well.
If you were at the RAM awards, you saw a whole bunch of the most experienced and committed bowhunters in the world, all chatting with each other, sharing information and exchanging hunt stories. That's just what they do during the entire convention.
You are correct about how great the conventions are put on by WSF and P&Y. Anyone who goes to those shows will attest to that.
Lots of conservation organizations get my money, WSF and P&Y get my time!
I'll echo all the comments above. Another great show in the books. Loved visiting with all the Bowsiter's that I've met previously and a whole bunch of new ones.
I, like Scott, went to my first couple of shows alone and now 5 years later it is like old home week. The friendships I've made at the shows alone is WELL worth the price of admission. The networking with outfitters is also invaluable. Look forward to the shows more and more every year. If you are going to go to one show every year, WSF is the one for me with P&Y a close second. (but that one is every other year)
KUDOS to all of those involved for making WSF one of the finest shows on earth.
Kyle, you were right on point about the quality of the show. As a first time attendee, all I can say is that my wife and I will definitely be back. Not only did I make some great new friends, but she did as well. I'd like to say publicly that not only were you a wonderful, gracious host to new friends at your table, but you also put on one heck of a Sheep Shape Seminar. It was great to finally see it in person. The only real problem I have now is that my wife actually knows what sheep hunts cost! Looking forward to the next one. Alan
"I'd like to say publicly that not only were you a wonderful, gracious host to new friends at your table, but you also put on one heck of a Sheep Shape Seminar."
Dang you! You've just gone and ruined my reputation! LOL!
You and your wonderful bride were great guests and we were honored to have you join us.
We'll do it again next year, and as I'll be off of the Board due to term limits, should have a lot more time to interact with folks, meet old friends and make new ones.
I heard I missed some excitement on Saturday night. Somebody bought an expensive dog?
The ultimate in family security, but no doubt the price reflected the fact Wounded Warriors Outdoors was the beneficiary of the sale.
OZ is on a speaker's bureau, but refused to charge us because he knows of the work we do and wanted to support us.
To say he was riveting would be an understatement!
What breed was this particular dog?
Alberta's Minister Mule Deer Permit - $23,000.00
Arizona Gov Antelope Tag - $40,000.00
Kulane First Nation Dall Tag -55,000.00
Wyoming Statewide Moose - $26,000.00
Washington Cali Bighorn Sheep Tag -$150,000.00
Cali Desert Bighorn Tag -$165,000.00
Navajo Nation Sheep Tag $35,000.00
Montana Bighorn Sheep Tag - $305,000.00
Taos Pueblo Rocky Sheep Tag -$ 135,000.00
Utah Dirty Devil -$57,500.00
Arizona Desert Sheep Tag -$380,000.00
Wyoming Rocky Tag -$70,000.00
14 Day Dalls Sheep and Grizzly Bear -$62,500.00
Oregon Bighorn Sheep -$95,000.00
Colorado Rocky Sheep Tag -$95,000.00
Alaska Chugach Dall Sheep -$125,000.00
New Mexico Rocky Sheep Tag -$140,000.00
Nevada Nelson Desert Sheep -$95,000.00
Alberta Minister Bighorn Sheep -$120,000.00
Idaho Bighorn Sheep Tag -$90,000.00
New Mexico Desert Sheep -$177,500.00
Good luck, Robb
We hope to do even better next year!
Glad you liked it. Next year we'll be giving away a Desert BHS hunt at the Life Members' Breakfast!
As for the beer, yeah, 2. Interest, 'late fees' and all that. ;^)
Here are my takeaways:
#1: Great people that you enjoy spending time with.
#2: An incredible conservation machine that is efficient at delivering dollars raised to put more sheep on the mountain. I talked to Gray and he said 87% goes back of every dollar raised and they plan on increasing that percentage.
#3: If you want to talk to and interview outfitters in the sheep/goat world, this is the best of the best.
#4: Professionally ran organization... Every single aspect of the events, auctions, dinners is organized, on time and well thought out!
Kudos and thank you to the WSF Leadership Team....I look forward to 2017's convention!
One correction. The number is 78%, not 87%.
Organizations that rate charities consider 70% to be an A+ rating. 78% is almost unheard of and we're justifiably very proud of that.