NRA First Vice President and NASCAR legend Richard Childress has been selected as the honorary chairman of National Hunting and Fishing Day, coming up Sept. 23.
With more than 200 NASCAR victories in his rearview mirror, Childress is the driving force behind NHF Day's new campaign focused on reaching experienced hunters, anglers and outdoorsmen and motivating them to take someone new into the outdoors.
Childress said while he’s best known for his racing accomplishments and racing company, he has always had another strong interest that was less well-known.
“I’ve got another love I’m just as passionate about: the outdoor sports like hunting, fishing and shooting and all the conservation efforts these sports make possible,” Childress said. "Some of my fondest memories are squirrel hunting with my stepfather in the woods of North Carolina, and bass fishing in local ponds and rivers.
“When I was asked to be the honorary chairman, I thought it would be a good opportunity to try to get people involved in hunting, fishing and shooting.” — Richard Childress“When I was asked to be the honorary chairman, I thought it would be a good opportunity to try to get people involved in hunting, fishing and shooting.”
Childress said this year NHF Day marks a special program that hasn’t been part of the celebration in the past. Between now and Sept. 23, anyone who pledges to take someone with them on their next outdoor adventure will be automatically entered into a drawing for a VIP race weekend for themselves and a friend, or a weekend of outdoor fun at Big Cedar Lodge in Missouri’s Ozark Mountains.
“It’s really something to incentivize people to go out and take people hunting and fishing for the first time,” Childress said. “Every one of us had someone take us for the first time. It’s just one of those things that we all owe it to take people out and let them see the great resources that we have today in this country.”
On May 2, 1972, President Nixon signed the first proclamation of National Hunting and Fishing Day, writing, “I urge all citizens to join with outdoor sportsmen in the wise use of our natural resources and in insuring their proper management for the benefit of future generations.” Now celebrated the fourth Saturday of every September, NHF Day remains the most effective grassroots effort ever undertaken to promote the outdoor sports and conservation.
“As sportsmen and women, it’s up to us to make sure our traditions are passed down to the next generations,” Childress concluded.
To make a pledge to take someone new on your next outdoor adventure, click here. To watch a video message from Richard Childress about National Hunting Day, click here.
Mark Chesnut has been the editor of America’s 1st Freedom magazine for 17 years and is an avid hunter, shooter and political observer.