Thursday, February 2, 2012
Field Trial Hall of Fame ceremonies set for Feb. 11
Sporting dog fans from all over the country are heading to nearby Grand Junction, Tenn.
They will have plenty of reasons to celebrate this year since new milestones have recently been accomplished at the National Bird Dog Museum. Little did anyone realize in February 1991, that the small structure then being dedicated as a “start-up” museum for bird dogs would grow and prosper to such an extent that it is today – a spacious, modern facility, and a destination for sporting dog fans from across the continent. But this year is extra special and will long be remembered…for a new building, new groups, and new events will be unveiled.
Hall of Fame Inductions
Among the venues at the museum is The Field Trial Hall of Fame, where the greatest of the greats are enshrined – both people and dogs, who, over the decades, have made their marks in the field trial sport. The hall is considered hallowed ground among competitive field trialers and fans. It is an annual highlight of the competitive sporting dog world when the induction ceremonies convene. This year, ceremonies will be hosted at the facilities in Grand Junction on Saturday, Feb. 11. Eleven deserving dogs and 10 distinguished people will be inducted. Honorees have been selected from the Brittany, Pointer/Setter, Retriever, Springer Spaniel, and German Shorthair arenas. Festivities begin at 9 a.m. and will last the entire day. Sponsors are Purina and The American Field magazine. Incoming president of the board for The Bird Dog Foundation, Don Driggers of Robbinsville, N.J., will share duties at the podium with Dale Bush of College Station, Texas.
A major accomplishment at the museum during the past year has been the completion of the newest building addition, the 6,000 sq. ft. Sporting Dog Wing. Over the past two years, 10 different nationwide sporting dog groups have contributed to the financial success of this project by raising a half-million dollars. A dedication and ribbon-cutting ceremony to open the new wing will take place during the midday break of the Field Trial Hall of Fame ceremony; time is set for 1:30 pm, Sat. Feb. 11. The Hardeman County Chamber of Commerce will orchestrate the ribbon-cutting. Local and state officials are expected to attend. With the new annex, the museum’s building complex now approaches 30,000 sq. ft. under one roof. The latest construction has boosted the facility’s total floor space by nearly 20 percent.
National Field Trial
Again this year, all the many gala events at the National Bird Dog Museum will precede or coincide with the starting week of the pointing dog National Field Trial Championship at the nearby Ames Plantation. This year marks the 113th running of the “Super Bowl of Bird Dogs.” The historic grounds at Ames Plantation have seen many greats venture forth over the past century. Last year, 40 pointers and two setters qualified for the prestigious competition. A similar number are expected this year, including “Touch’s White-Out” the 2011 winner. The fleet running dogs will seek the elusive Bobwhite quail in its winter coveys on the Ames courses. Barring bad weather, the horse-back trial, run over two three-hour courses, will take about two weeks to complete. Eukanuba will sponsor a kick-off event to be held at the National Bird Dog Museum, Sunday evening, Feb. 12.
The Bird Dog Foundation, Inc. is a non-profit charity dedicated to preserving the past and protecting the future for over 40 breeds collectively referred to as bird dogs.
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