SPRINGFIELD, Mo. - Outdoor television star Michael Waddell has been selected as honorary chairman for this year's National Hunting and Fishing Day, set for Sept. 27.
In the volunteer role, Waddell becomes the official spokesman for the annual commemoration's key message: Conservation succeeds only because of America's 34 million hunters and anglers. In fact, through license fees and excise taxes, hunters and anglers generate $100,000 every 30 minutes for fish, wildlife and habitat programs.
"Michael's surging popularity with youths, women, men - hunters and non-hunters alike - make him an ideal person to carry the torch for National Hunting and Fishing Day," said Denise Wagner, coordinator for Wonders of Wildlife museum."I'm so humbled to be named honorary chair. National Hunting and Fishing Day has such a great tradition. And it's awesome to be able to make a difference in the lives of people who love to hunt and fish just like I do," said Waddell.
The museum is the official home of National Hunting and Fishing Day, with sponsorship from the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF), Bass Pro Shops, The Sportsman Channel, National Wild Turkey Federation, Realtree, Cabela's, Woolrich, GunBroker.com and Safari Club International.
Wonders of Wildlife is the only hunting- and fishing-focused museum affiliated with the Smithsonian Institution and accredited by the American Zoo and Aquarium Association.
Waddell, of Woodbury (better known as Booger Bottom), Ga., hosts two outdoor TV shows including "Realtree Road Trips," a perennial fan favorite. Waddell's hunting knowledge, fresh perspective and sense of humor keep this reality-style show fast-paced, energetic, edgy and funny. Upward ratings show more and more viewers who never before considered collecting their own venison are being drawn alongside veteran hunters toward the magnetic host.
Waddell shares his love of the outdoors with wife Ashley and their four children, Mason, Meyer, Woods Macoy and Audrey Mackay.
At the urging of NSSF, Congress formalized National Hunting and Fishing Day in 1971 as a way to recognize hunters, anglers and conservation. Every U.S. President from Richard M. Nixon through George W. Bush, as well as Congressmen, governors and mayors across the country, has proclaimed their support. It's one of the most effective grassroots campaigns ever undertaken to promote traditional outdoor sports.
Previous honorary chairs include Jeff Foxworthy, Tracy Byrd, Wade Boggs, Ward Burton, Hank Williams Jr., Terry Bradshaw and many others.
For more information, visit www.nhfday.org.