February 2021

 Everglades Conservation and Sportsman Club, Inc.

50940 Loop Road

Ochopee, FL  34141

CYPRESS HEADLINES

10 MARCH 2021

First Live In-Person meeting of the Year to be held March 21st: Our meeting(s) will be held on the club grounds at the outdoor stage area.  So that we can safely socially distance and space each other out, we are asking that you do not bring any guests to the meeting.  Please ask your guests to remain in camp or elsewhere on the club grounds, or out in the woods while we meet.  So please, only members, associate members, and new applicants come to the meeting(s).  Although it cannot be lawfully enforced, we encourage all members to wear masks or wear facial coverings, and to remain socially distant from one another, and practice all of the recommended CDC safety guidelines (such as hand washing, hand sanitizer, etc.).  Attendance at the meeting is by no means mandatory.  Attendance is strictly voluntary, at the members own risk.  At this meeting we will gauge the attendance, safety compliance and health risks, and then determine if meetings may be safely held in the future.  The date, location and times of the March meeting are:

NEXT MEETING

SUNDAY, MARCH 21, 2021

BOARD MEETING AT 10:00 AM

GENERAL MEMBERSHIP MEETING AT 12 NOON

ON THE CLUBGROUNDS OUTDOOR STAGE AND LAWN

*PLEASE BRING YOUR OWN CHAIR IF YOU WISH

NOTE: THE BOARD MEETING WILL BE CLOSED DURING MEMBERSHIP TERMINATION HEARINGS

Club News and Updates:

As you ‘all well know, we first canceled our club meetings exactly one year ago due to the Covid-19 Coronavirus pandemic.  Since February 2020 we only held two in-person meetings, and that was for nominations and the election.  In the meantime your Board of Directors held half a dozen meetings on ZOOM, to conduct normal business and to continue club operations.  Because we had to cancel the 71st Annual Wild Hog Barbecue fundraiser, we are realizing a deficit of $10,000 + / – in our budget.  To reduce expenditures, we introduced a number of financial austerity measures to include: shutting off the electricity and lighting during the week days to the camp trailer sites, the camping grounds, and outdoor facilities; requiring a mandatory conversion of all camp trailer sites to 110V; instead of replacing a badly needed mower we “McGyver’ed” it, to hopefully keep it running for another year; and we put out a call for donations, and you ‘all responded overwhelmingly.  Thank you for understanding and sticking with us.

On that note, our Past President “Smitty” came up with a creative and innovative idea, he got the go ahead for it from the Board, and he picked up the ball and ran with it.  Smitty set up a “Go Fund Me” page for the Club which went live on February 15th.  To date, our members, and our many of our good friends out there have extended their arms and reached deep into their pockets.  As of March 5th $3,850 has been donated and deposited to the Club Treasury.  Thank you Smitty, and many, many thanks to our members and friends, your response is so much appreciated.  Please share this link to our “Go Fund Me” page with others:  https://www.gofundme.com/f/everglades-conservation-and-sportsman-club?utm_source=facebook&fbclid=IwAR37CtpPvSmVtxO-1H8EjJslHZpal31SHUVylz-5gqLS0Xi1swMOFVTRH3I

And the weekend of February 26-28th member Taylor Garlaus held an open invitation private event at her camp to raise money for the Club, by hosting a pig roast, commemorative t-shirt sales, outdoor games, and a raffle and auction.  Thanks for stepping up Taylor; it was a great event and many thanks.

I’m trying not to repeat much of the club news and updates that were in the February newsletter.  Other than the above summation, the Board of Directors held another meeting on March 1st via ZOOM.  We’ll report on any further updates at the general meeting on March 21st.

As far as wildlife conservation, or updates about hunting and recreation, regarding the FWC game commission meeting on February 25th, we are Happy to relay to you that the commissioners amended the proposed deer hunting regulation, and “retained” the general gun season in the Corn Dance Unit.  And we have the ear of the commissioners and the staff, for a verbal commitment to return the general gun season to us, for the Stairsteps and Loop Units for the 2022-2023 hunting season.

Don’t forget to renew your ORV Permits.  The telephone number for the NPS ORV office is 239-695-4111, option # 3.

One other repeat reminder.  If you are not already registered, please join our “Everglades Conservation Sportsmans Club Members” only face book page.  This is a closed private site which is only open to members and associate members.  No non-members and no family members who are not already members, and no friends or guests are admitted.  Only members and associate members.  Simply log-in to the page and send a request to join.  A lot of information is disseminated on this site on a daily basis in between meetings, along with other information pertinent to the club and our members.  Please, club business and related business or news only.  The face book page can be located by searching for “Everglades Conservation Sportsmans Club Members”, or at https://www.facebook.com/groups/313892302655342 .  Once you send your request to join, the moderator or administrator will admit you.

From Zac.  There continues to be a problem with members being blocked in on the lanes in the Buggy storage lot.  We will propose another standing club rule to address this matter.  We recently had another situation where another member parked his truck and trailer in one of the lanes in the buggy storage lot road, and left it parked there all weekend while he went out to his camp.  Well that inconsiderate member blocked in another member, who had come out hours later to retrieve his trailer but it was blocked in.  This has become a common practice which has to cease.  Please, do not park any unattended vehicles or trailers in any of the lanes in the buggy storage lot roads.  If you cannot pull into an open parking space between the lanes, the overflow temporary parking area is outside the gun range fence.  Overflow parking by the range is “temporary only”, meaning for the day or a weekend.  We will discuss this at the next meeting.

Reminder on Standing Club Rules

We ask that all members and associates please review the following club rules on a regular basis, to maintain proper order and compliance, so that all of us will be on the same page, so to speak.  Thank you.

Camping Units and Camp Trailers in the open yard out back are not permitted to be left out there all the time as a camping spot.  You are welcome to camp there when it is hunting season but you cannot use the open yard space as a permanent campsite; Storage Yard Parking– we need to know what belongs to whom in the storage yard.  Please mark your buggy, trailers, camper or whatever you have parked out there with your name, or let Zac know that it belongs to you; Dumping your scrap metal or anything else at the Club is not okay.  Please talk to Zac if you need to get rid of scrap metal, appliances, bulk items or anything else to see if he can help you out; Buggy Parking– Buggies are to be stored in the storage (buggy) yard or in your assigned buggy pole barn space, not at your trailer site; Speed Limit– is 5 MPH on the Club grounds at all times.  Please make sure your children, guests, and ATV riders are aware of this, as you are responsible for the actions and the behavior of your guests at all times; Shooting Range– we have a backstop at the range for a reason, so please don’t place targets above the backstop.  Prior to uncasing your firearms make sure the chain is up across the back prairie gate, put the flag up, and please make sure no one is out in the prairie riding around.  Then bang the heck out of that bell so all persons around can hear you!  There will no shooting of the 2-part e-mix bomb targets and no hanging targets on the posts.  When you are finished please police up the grounds and dispose of all spent shells, spent casings, used targets and any trash. Thoroughly clean-up after yourself before you leave.  Then put the flag down and re-open the back prairie gate entrance by returning the chain to the open position.  No drinking of alcohol is permitted on the range (#17 of the Rules & Regulations) and intoxicated persons are prohibited from entry; Your Camp Trailer Spot– Zac has reached out to us about members not maintaining the grounds of their camp trailer sites.  Everyone is responsible for maintenance of their own camp trailer sites and the grounds.  It is not Zac’s job to maintain your camp trailer sites or the grounds on and around your camp trailer site.  You may contact Zac if you would like to make arrangements to pay him for your grounds maintenance.  If you can’t keep up with it on your own, you can reach out to our Caretaker Zac.  For a reasonable fee he can be talked into giving you a hand.  You can reach Zac at 239-695-2573.

If you have any questions or comment you can email me at hpick3@aol.com or call or shoot me a text at 786-229-1575.  Harry