Explore all things outdoors at this year’s Yankee Sportsman’s Classic

Published: Jan. 21, 2023 at 9:00 PM EST
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ESSEX JUNCTION, Vt. (WCAX) - After two years, the 28th annual Yankee Sportsman’s Classic has returned.

From fishing to shooting, the long-standing Vermont tradition is focused on all things outdoors. This year they have over 200 exhibitors to show off their outdoor products and businesses.

James Staves with Hat Trick Charters has been attending the show since the beginning. He says it’s good to be back and the event has changed a lot over the years. ”I’m seeing more of a family unit now than I did before. It was mostly male-oriented, and now I see a lot of the women are coming in of course -- which is good -- and the families. The younger people are bringing the kids in -- we didn’t see that in the past,” Staves said.

The event lasts for three days, attracting over 15,000 people from in and out of state. Kagen Hance is from Chester, Vermont, and although this is the first time he’s come to the show, he says he will be coming back next year.

”I love it. It’s an awesome experience. There are a lot of people here that I was hoping I would see. My dad raised me to hunt and fish. I just love the outdoors, so yeah. I have had a good experience so far,” said Hance.

Those that have been coming to the show for years, like Eric Chates, say it gives outdoor people a place to connect, and it’s a great opportunity to learn something new. ”Sometimes you can get a chance to check with game wardens and stuff here. If you got questions you have always wanted an answer to but never quite got around to email a warden or something -- there’s one right here,” Chates said.

The last day to go to the event is on Sunday but organizers say they will be back again next year.