Outdoor enthusiasts from around the Rim Country, whether they are hunters, anglers, hikers, campers or mountain bikers, are gearing up for two upcoming expos designed to tickle the fancy of all who attend.
The events include the International Sportsmen’s Expo to be held Feb. 23 to 26 in University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale and the Arizona Game and Fish Outdoor Expo set for March 31 and April 1 at the Ben Avery Shooting Range in Phoenix.
Both offer an opportunity to experience first-hand the great Arizona outdoors.
The International Sportsmen’s Expo has drawn fishing and hunting outfitters from around the state and will have on display the newest in fishing tackle and hunting gear, boats, motors, marine accessories, mountain home furnishings, ATVs, trucks, outdoor apparel and optics.
More than 300 companies are expected to exhibit.
Also the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, Arizona Deer Association, Eastmans’ Trophy Deer and Boy Scouts of America will have information booths and displays set up throughout the entire show.
The RMEF is hosting an Ultimate Rifle Raffle at the event. There will also be hands-on activities, including a giant casting pond, Arizona Game and Fish Department Youth Fair, a hunting dog competition and 3D Pop-Up archery contest.
Hank Shaw, author of Hunt, Gather, Cook will be on hand for hints and autographs, as will Lt. John Nores Jr., co-star of National Geographic TV’s Wild Justice.
Tickets are $15 per adult; children under 15 and active military members will be admitted free of charge. Parking is free with admission.
Attendees who don’t find what they want in the stadium, need only walk across the street to the giant Cabela’s store to find even more outdoor offerings.
Those not interested in hunting, fishing or camping, might want to purchase a ticket simply to slip into the home of the Arizona Cardinals and check out the spot where Super Bowl LXII and WrestleMania XXVI were held
The 63,400-seat stadium, with its retractable roof and playing field, is unlike any stadium in North America.
The Arizona Game and Fish Expo is an annual event designed to give the public chances to learn about wildlife-related and outdoor recreation activities including fishing, hunting, archery, shooting sports, camping, boating and off-highway vehicle recreation.
More than 150 exhibitors are expected to be on hand to supplement the myriad of hands-on activities.
Last year, the two-day Expo drew a record 37,500 visitors and Game and Fish officials say the crowds could be even larger this year.