More than 60 women have already registered for next month’s Becoming an Outdoors-Woman (BOW) workshop and others still have time to reserve their spot in the weekend event.

The three-day introductory skills workshop, which offers classes in hunting, fishing, camping, canoeing, cooking and other outdoor activities, will take place Sept. 14-16 at Camp Caribou in Winslow.

The workshop, sponsored by the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife and the Friends of Maine BOW, teaches women to be more competent, confident and aware when enjoying the outdoors.

“The Becoming an Outdoors-Woman program provides a unique opportunity for adult women not only to learn new skills related to outdoor activity but also to gain awareness and self confidence,” said Program Director Emily MacCabe.  “The unique hands-on learning experience allows the participants to spend time with our talented and inspirational instructors who strive to provide a safe and comfortable learning environment while also having the opportunity to build relationships and make connections to other outdoor-minded women.” 

The workshop, in its 16th year, is led by volunteer instructors who will teach 33 different classes, including canoeing, kayaking, nature photography, trip planning and packing, firearms use and marksmanship, fly tying, freshwater fishing, outdoor survival, self-defense, bow hunting, outdoor writing and blogging, knot tying and more.

Women are able to select the four classes they wish to participate in during the three and a half hour sessions.

The cost of the workshop is $225, which includes all meals, lodging, equipment and instruction.

The national program started in 1991, when it was first offered at the University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point. BOW was created after a study concluded women preferred to learn hunting, fishing and other outdoor skills in a non-competitive atmosphere with like-minded women.

More than 20,000 women attend about 80 weekend-long BOW workshops held annually in at least 40 states, several Canadian provinces and New Zealand.

Hundreds of women from across the state and as far as Texas have taken advantage of Maine’s BOW program and the unique classes it offers each year.

“Spending time in the outdoors is not only enjoyable but it’s a great way to relax and relieve stress,” MacCabe said. “We’re so fortunate to live in Maine where we have such an abundance of natural resources and outdoor recreational opportunity.  Sometimes it only takes a small introduction to create a connection that can last a lifetime.” 

Women interested in expanding on the sessions offered at BOW are also able to take advantage of two upcoming Beyond BOW Workshops.

An in-depth moose calling for photography workshop will take place the same weekend as BOW, while a trapping program is available Oct. 31 – Nov. 4. Both workshops are held at Lakeside Lodge in Sinclair.

To register or find out more about BOW’s Introductory Skills Weekend or the Beyond BOW Workshops, go towww.mainebow.com.

Image courtesy Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife

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