September 25, 2023 (Washington, D.C.) – On Saturday September 23, sportsmen and women across the United States were honored for their unique contributions to conservation, our nation’s economy, and our American way of life. Established by Congress in 1971 and first celebrated a year later, National Hunting and Fishing Day (NHFD) occurs the fourth Saturday of September and seeks to not only bring recognition, but also to encourage participation in hunting, fishing, recreational shooting, and trapping.
To raise awareness on how America’s sportsmen and women are the nation’s true conservationists, the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation (CSF) worked with the Executive Office of the President and Governors across the country, including the 27 members of the nonpartisan Governors Sportsmen’s Caucus (GSC), to formally recognize National Hunting and Fishing Day. 38 states issued gubernatorial proclamations in addition to the President’s own proclamation, which noted that “Hunting and fishing are part of who we are as Americans -- central to our history, heritage, and prosperity and ingrained in the soul of our Nation.”
For over 85 years, sportsmen and women have played a crucial role in funding conservation efforts in the United States through the American System of Conservation Funding (ASCF), a unique “user pays – public benefits” program of self-imposed fees and manufacturer-level excise taxes. The ASCF serves as the main funding mechanism for state fish and wildlife agencies, helping to fund their critical work of fish and wildlife management, habitat management and restoration, hunter education, hunter and angler access projects, and more. National Hunting & Fishing Day seeks to increase awareness of and participation in our favorite outdoor pursuits, while also celebrating the contributions made by America’s original conservationists – sportsmen and women.
“As the backbone of conservation, America’s 55 million sportsmen and women are more than deserving of the recognition that comes with National Hunting and Fishing Day,” said CSF President and CEO Jeff Crane. “Each proclamation is a testament to the sanctity of our time-honored traditions and the immense conservation, economic, and cultural value sportsmen and women provide for our society.”
National Hunting and Fishing Day remains the most prominent occasion for promoting America’s hunting and angling traditions, and the economic, conservation, and cultural benefits provided by sportsmen and women.
For more information on National Hunting and Fishing Day, please visit www.NHFDay.org, and for a list of the proclamations that were issued this year please visit National Hunting and Fishing Day – Congressional Sportsmen's Foundation.