continued Some of the attendees, and members of the general public who heard about it after the fact, were outraged at the “government intrusion,” especially after 28 years of holding the same dinner. The health department said it was simply doing its job protecting public health, and had never intervened before because it did not know about the event.
The health department’s concern of possible health hazards from serving wild game “makes sense to us,” DeLeon said. He said he is certain the county was not targeting the church or the event but simply enforcing county laws. So this year the church changed the event’s name and menu, received a permit to serve an on-site dinner and had the church’s water tested to ensure it could be used at a public event, DeLeon said.
“The county’s been very cooperative,” he said.
DeLeon said he’s not sure how the menu change may effect event turnout this year, and while some may be disappointed he knows many attendees come every year and “do not want to miss it.”
The 29th annual Sportsmen’s banquet starts at 5 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 1, at Open Door Baptist Church, Route 13 and Delphi Road in New Woodstock. Attendees will have an hour for seminars and displays with dinner at 6 p.m. followed by guest speaker Steven Rockey who will speak about deer and turkey hunting tips, the gospel and have demonstrations and video footage. There will be door prize drawings for hunting and other outdoor items, with the grand prize of a gun cabinet made by Bill Vair.
The event is free and open to all.
For more information, call 662-3215 or 655-9848.
Jason Emerson is editor of the Cazenovia Republican. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.