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For some people it’s the magic of the water that attracts them. It could be the grandeur of the surroundings or chasing fish in a motorboat. For others it’s about exploring quiet waters with a paddle in your hand. I’ve always loved the quiet sports, simple non-motorized activities that don’t…

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The yellowed index cards my mother wrote her favorite recipes on are my most cherished possessions. The ones with more spots and faded words--they were her favorites. They don’t have any value to anyone else. The recipes themselves aren’t anything extraordinary or inventive. They’re simple r…

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It’s Memorial Day weekend and the middle of morel mushroom season. I grew up in a family of hunter-gatherers. I think it all started with my dad, Earl McClay Bennett, who moved to Wisconsin in 1949 with 6 of 7 kids in tow. I was the last kid born a week before Christmas in 1950.

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I wasted most of the day last Thursday. 

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The two big Tom turkeys were gobbling up a storm. Big Gobbler One from the hill behind me south a hundred yards gobbled when another gobbler suddenly answered back 100 yards to my north with a challenging call. It was like I was in the middle of a YouTube video. They were hot and I was excit…

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It’s graduation season. The school year is coming to a formal close and even though this year has been far from normal, the rites of passage are once again upon us.

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We spotted seven gobblers in the alfalfa field dancing up a storm for the two hens that seemed quite disinterested in their dance moves. John Travolta had something on these Toms with that cool white leisure suit in Saturday Night Fever. The scene did have an impact on my 11 year old wannabe…

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As we begin to come out from lock downs and seek to resume daily activities, I have been listening to varying viewpoints about next steps our society should take.

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I was shocked by what I found in the kitchen last week when I came home from work.  I have to keep reminding my kids our kitchen is not a college dorm. Crumbs on the counter, food globs covering the inside of the microwave, and fingerprint smudges across the front of the refrigerator do not …

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It was like they had just popped out of the ground, like they had been pulled from a hat. The entire flock of hens and who knew what else were all putting and purring and giving me the evil eye. But the fence line was so thick they couldn’t be sure what I was. Maybe they thought I was a stum…

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I’ve never felt bad for killing a turkey.

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"All that I am or ever hope to be, I owe to my angel Mother." - Abraham Lincoln

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My brother and sister-in-law are the parents of two adorable little boys—well, adorable most of the time. Last week, my sister-in-law, who is a busy RN nurse, posted on social media she was having a sweet moment at home sitting with their youngest who is two. Suddenly, he stood up and farted…

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I never thought I’d get addicted to spring turkey hunting like I have but it happened. It’s all about the gobbling of a Big Tom Turkey that for me started in Wisconsin’s first year of turkey hunting way back in 1976! He is LOUD, gobbling up a storm to let everyone know he is out there. Thund…

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I mentioned WWII reenacting in last week’s column and I feel like I should elaborate a bit, since that isn’t exactly a hobby you gloss over when recapping your weekend on Monday morning at the office. 

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As we enter the second month of being on lockdown, there are signs that the extraordinary steps we have taken to isolate ourselves from the coronavirus are working. Rates of infection and death are down from the projections and flattening the curve worked.

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As soon as we stepped out of the car we heard gobbling. Not just one gobbler but several. I looked over at Brady, my 11 year old and he was smiling. Next came the loud yelps from a hen turkey followed by more gobbles that rattled through the calm morning. We seemed to have picked the right s…

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When I was a kid I had a friend who loved chocolate. 

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It’s been wonderful having my two youngest children home for the last few weeks. It’s like a gift of an extended childhood for the boys. We have been playing games, doing projects, and cooking together.

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I was up at 6 a.m. this morning to go scout turkeys and get permission to hunt on private lands where I had spotted some turkeys the day before. I was driving around when I saw a half dozen big black blobs in the distance next to some brown blobs. Once I got my binoculars on them, I confirme…

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If your idea of trout fishing is striking off to some beautiful backcountry stream, complete with flowers and butterflies, to forget all about life’s difficulties and cast dry flies to over-eager rainbows, steer clear of the Brule River. 

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By several indications, it appears social distancing is helping to flatten the curve with the coronavirus. We should all be happy about this, but being socially distant to many may seem like the cure is worse than the disease, which is, of course, totally wrong.

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I’ve had a really hard time writing the last couple weeks. I feel like I have nothing to say or any worthwhile advice on cooking. It’s hard to come up with a new recipe that will inspire people to cook when you don’t feel like cooking yourself.

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I’m getting a lot of calls and questions of late regarding ‘when?’  Sticking to outdoor themes, these “when questions” are an annual thing that revolve about not being too late. You never want to hear that age-old response of, “You should have been here yesterday.”  Every spring the first wh…

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I’ve started to struggle a little with this pandemic in the last week. 

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Sunday is Easter, a time of celebration and renewal for Christians who mark the resurrection of Jesus Christ, Son of God. It’s one of the most sacred days on the Christian calendar and affirms the faith of followers of the promise of eternal life.

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These are some crazy times. I’m having a hard time coming up with the right words to express how I’m feeling. Are you? Is anyone else feeling lost?

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Youth turkey hunts, taking place soon, are designed to give young hunters a chance to get out and enjoy one of the most exciting events for hunters across the nation. The gobbling of a big old Tom turkey rocks the woods from the lowest valley to the highest ridge. The faint sound of a far-of…

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The only decent news to come out of this whole pandemic is that we can still go outside. 

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Last week I noticed a trio of ducks: two male and one female, have returned to our neighborhood. It’s a sure sign of spring and something I always look forward to each year.

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The Covid-19 virus has turned the world upside down. I don’t know about you, but I’m keeping myself busy, waiting for this to pass.  I’m still working, managing Crystal Ball Farms dairy plant in western Wisconsin. The demand for milk has shifted and our little storefront has never been so busy.