Conservation Currents
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In This Issue

Second Keynote Speaker Announced for IWLA Convention

Mark Damian DudaWith Americans facing daily information overload and more subtle threats to the health of our waters, lands, and wildlife, it is more challenging to communicate about conservation today than it was a generation ago.

Mark Damian Duda, a nationally recognized expert on communicating about natural resources and conservation, will discuss prevailing public opinion about conservation issues and highlight the keys to successfully reaching and engaging Americans who care about the outdoors.

After his keynote address, Duda will lead workshops that provide practical guidance on effectively communicate about conservation. Learn how planning ahead, understanding your audience, and thinking locally can help you and your chapter achieve your communications goals. This workshop is designed for volunteers and highlights proven communications techniques that engage citizens, the media, and policymakers.

Download your Convention Kit and more on the League Web site!

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Support the League through AmazonSmile

AmazonSmile IWLA is the online store that has it all, from sporting goods to the latest in entertainment. Next time you shop online, use the League's new AmazonSmile page and Amazon will make a donation to the Izaak Walton League – at no cost to you!

The premise is simple: You shop. Amazon gives. The AmazonSmile Web site is the same Amazon you already know – same products, same prices, same service. The big difference is that Amazon donates 0.5% of the price of your eligible purchases to the Izaak Walton League. Prices are not marked up to cover this donation. Amazon is sharing a portion of its profits with groups like the League.

Please share our AmazonSmile link with fellow Ikes, family members, and friends. And feel great about shopping – whether it's a gift for mom, dad, or grads.

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Kick off Summer with Creek Freaks

Jones Lane 2014 - Creek Freaks boys in streamMake a splash this summer using local streams to connect kids to the outdoors, science, and fun! The League makes it easy with our Creek Freaks training workshops and materials.

Designed for children ages 10 to 14, Creek Freaks engages kids and adults in outdoor adventure and learning. It's a great fit for afterschool programs, summer camps, nature center staff, youth organizations, naturalists, and enthusiastic classroom teachers.

League staff are ready to provide hands-on assistance in setting up Creek Freaks in your community. Contact Erin Johnson at or (301) 548-0150 x229 for details on scheduling your own training. Visit for more information about Creek Freaks.

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New League Resources for Planning Youth Programs

Summit Hall 2014 - Creek Freaks  two girlsAre you working with a youth group – or interested in starting one? The League's new "Youth in the Outdoors" webinar series will help you provide positive, educational experiences with nature for youth of all ages. You can view these videos in order or pick one that meets your immediate needs. Following are brief descriptions of each webinar:

  • Why We Must Re-Connect Children to Nature: It is vital that we find ways to restore the bonds between children and nature. Izaak Walton League chapters can play an important part in this effort. This webinar will give you a solid understanding of what is keeping kids indoors – crucial for designing innovative and effective ways to restore the nature of childhood. Presented by Ken Finch, President, Green Hearts: Institute for Nature in Childhood
  • Engaging Youth in the Outdoors: Izaak Walton League chapters and members across the country have been leaders in connecting young people with hunting, fishing, conservation, and the great outdoors. This webinar covers the nuts and bolts of running a successful youth program. Presented by Rebecca Wadler, IWLA Conservation Education Associate, and Earl Hower, IWLA Director of Chapter Relations
  • Youth Programs That Work: In this webinar, we learn from the successes of League chapters across the country and explore projects developed by League chapters and divisions. Presented by Ken Finch, President, Green Hearts: Institute for Nature in Childhood, and Rebecca Wadler, IWLA Conservation Education Associate

This webinar series was funded in part with a grant from the Izaak Walton League of America Endowment.

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Last Call for National Award Nominations

West Central award - convention 2013The League's national awards give League members the opportunity to recognize peers for their work at the local, state, regional, and national levels. It is also an opportunity to share "what works" for local conservation and outdoor recreation projects. Nomination Deadline: June 1, 2014.

  • National Awards: From new leaders to life-long conservation advocates, our national awards recognize members and supporting organizations for the work they do to accomplish the League's mission.
  • Member Recruitment Award: This award recognizes the chapter that has carried out the most effective membership recruitment and retention program.

Visit the League's National Awards Web page for nomination forms and more details. Questions? Contact Tara Scibelli at (800) IKE-LINE (453-5463) x255 or e-mail

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Grants Available for National Hunting and Fishing Day

Mountaineer Chapter youth shootingLeague chapters can apply for a new grant to support National Hunting and Fishing Day efforts! Application Deadline: June 2, 2014.

National Hunting and Fishing Day partnered with Yamaha Motor Corporation to create the NHF Day Live It! Grant. The program is designed to help organizations connect families and children with the outdoors. All grant applications must be for a National Hunting and Fishing Day event in September 2014.

Events that qualify for funding include:

  • Fishing derby
  • Hunting expo
  • Outdoor expo
  • Hunting experiences for kids

Grants can be used to purchase outdoor equipment, rent equipment for your event, and for marketing efforts to get the word out in your community.

Visit the National Hunting and Fishing Day Web site for the grant application and guidelines. For questions regarding the NHF Day Live It Grant, call Wonders of Wildlife at (417) 225-1118 or e-mail For more information about NHF Day, visit the League Web site.

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Free Fishing Days

Dwight Lydell Chapter youth fishingFishing is a great way to introduce youth, adults, and families to outdoor recreation – and engage them in the great outdoors for life. Many state fish and wildlife agencies offer "free fishing days" that allow anglers to fish without a license. It's the perfect opportunity for beginners to try out fishing.

Many Izaak Walton League chapters are wonderful places to introduce people to fishing – and possibly gain a few new members as well. Consider hosting a day of fishing at your local chapter, providing instruction and access to ponds or lakes for non-members.

If your chapter does not have a pond, consider hosting an event in the community. Individual League members can take a friend or family member who has never been fishing out on the water for a day.

In many states, the "free fishing days" take place during National Fishing and Boating Week, which is June 1-8, 2014. In other states, these days coincide with national holidays. For a list of "free fishing days" by state, visit the National Fishing and Boating Week Web site.

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Ikes in the News

Here are a few places the League recently appeared in the press:

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U.S. flagRemember Someone Special

As you're thinking of loved ones who are no longer with you this upcoming Memorial Day, consider donating to the League in their memory.

Resource of the Month: Flags and Banners

IWLA flag Brighten up your space and advertise the League by displaying an IWLA flag or banner at your facility, chapter house, or meeting place.

Download an order form (PDF) to order yours today!

Contact Information

If you have any questions about this newsletter or other IWLA programs, please contact:

Dawn Merritt
Communications Director
707 Conservation Lane
Gaithersburg, MD 20878
(301) 548-0150 ext. 220

When forwarding Conservation Currents to others, remove the "Manage Your League Subscriptions" link at the bottom so others don't have access to your League e-mail preferences. Contact Dawn Merritt at the e-mail address above for other distribution options. If you are not receiving this newsletter directly from the League, sign up here.

Read previous issues of Conservation Currents.

Founded in 1922, the Izaak Walton League of America protects America's outdoors through community-based conservation, education, and the promotion of outdoor recreation.

Mission Statement: To conserve, restore, and promote the sustainable use and enjoyment of our natural resources, including soil, air, woods, waters, and wildlife.

PHOTO CREDITS: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (1), Mark Duda (1), AmazonSmile (1), Izaak Walton League of America (3), Mountaineer Chapter – IWLA (1), Dwight Lydell Chapter – IWLA (1), (1)


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