By Amy Guckeen Tolson, USAG Redstone January 23, 2013
REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala. -- Your taste buds haven't lived until they've savored wild game.
Take a walk on the wild side and taste the fruits -- or in this case, game -- of Redstone Arsenal hunters' labor at Outdoor Recreation's annual Wild Game Cookout on Feb. 1 from 5-10 p.m. at the Community Activity Center, building 3711 on Patton Road. Cost is $20 for Redstone permit-carrying hunters, $25 for all other participants and children under 12 are admitted free. Beverages, including beer, are included in ticket price. For information or tickets, call 876-4868. Tickets will be sold Friday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Redstone Exchange lobby, and Jan. 29 in the Sparkman Cafeteria from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Who knows, you may just be filling your plate with catfish that FMWR business operations officer Mark Germonprez caught himself, or the doe that Col. Ian Klinkhammer, deputy executive director for the Army Contracting Command-Redstone, shot with his bow.
"One of the most fun parts to me about hunting and fishing is getting to share the fruits of your harvest with your friends," Germonprez said. "It's just a wonderful, wonderful way to experience what we hunters experience all the time. Wild game is the best meat out there. You can't buy meat that good in a store. You can't buy fish that good in a store. You have to get out there and get it yourself."
The all-you-can-eat buffet will be sure to get mouths watering with a spread of venison sliders, duck poppers, catfish and more, with all the traditional fixins', including green beans, corn on the cob and homemade hush puppies. If you want to try your hand at the cooking yourself, enter the cookout's annual tradition, the wild game chili cookoff. Attendees are invited to bring their best pot of chili for tasting and judging at the event. Chili must include some type of wild game. Trophies will be awarded for first, second and third place, as well as people's choice. All entries must be at the Community Activity Center by 4:30 p.m. Feb. 1. Contact Outdoor Recreation if you are in need of wild game for your recipe.
Since Klinkhammer arrived on post four years ago, he's attended the cookout and even helped prepare the feast himself. This year he just might enlist his wife, who makes a great venison chili, to enter the chili cookoff.
"The Wild Game Cookout is very inexpensive and you get a huge variety of good, quality game," Klinkhammer said. "Plus you get the camaraderie of being with other people who hunt out here."
In addition to the great eats, door prizes, displays and entertainment, Redstone Arsenal's own singer/songwriter Matt Prater and his band will be on hand. For more information about the Wild Game Cookout, call 876-4868.