Delaware Outdoor Expo offers a chance to scratch that outside itch

Among the presentations at the Outdoor Expo Saturday will be a discussion on paddleboard fishing presented by Delmarva Board Sports. (Submitted photo)

HARRINGTON — The recent trend of warmer weather in Delaware has outdoor enthusiasts itching to get outside and play, whether it’s fishing, hunting or recreation.

The inaugural Delaware Outdoor Expo, presented by the Delaware State News, will provide ample opportunity to scratch that itch on Saturday at the Delaware State Fairgrounds in Harrington from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m.

“We are blessed to live in an area with tremendous opportunities for outdoor activities,” said Delaware State News Publisher Tom Byrd. “Whether it’s enjoying the great fishing and hunting, climbing on a paddleboard, or just relaxing in a camp after a beautiful hike, the First State has something for everyone.

“We’re excited to be bringing the Delaware Outdoor Expo to the State Fairgrounds in Harrington. I know we have a great lineup of vendors and presenters, so we invite everyone to come on down and enjoy the day.”

There will be 11 different demonstrations and speakers at the Dover Building throughout the day, hitting on topics ranging from kayaking to fishing, calling and hunting wild turkeys, archery, scuba diving, Lyme Disease prevention and more.

“Everybody has been on edge to get outside,” said Rich King, Outdoors columnist for the Delaware State News. “The February spring weather that we got didn’t help out any.

“The Delaware Outdoor Expo should be fun. I enjoy watching the presentations and look forward to seeing everybody there. The cold weather this weekend will probably push people inside, so there won’t be anyplace better to be than the Outdoor Expo.”

Mr. King said it’s always fascinating to hear the fishing stories of Harry Aiken, who will be doing a presentation on surf fishing at 10:30 a.m. Mr. Aiken is 81-years-old and has been surf fishing for 75 of those years.

“If you haven’t had the chance to meet and chat with Harry, you won’t want to miss this,” Mr. King said. “He has forgotten more about fishing than most of us will ever learn. He is a wealth of knowledge and enjoys sharing his experiences.

“He is the guy that cast a baseball out of Yankee Stadium, something no one has ever done even with a baseball bat.”

Beth Peterson of Peterson’s Positive Pups will host at “Introduction to Basic Dog Training” at 11 a.m. Her demonstration will star a Canaan dog that looks like Border Collie.

“I’m really looking forward to this event and giving a demonstration about dog obedience,” Ms. Peterson said. “My demonstration should be helpful when it comes to any dog.

“We’ll go over attention and release and basic sit, lie down, stand commands and even go into a little loose leash walking.”

Delmarva Board Sport Adventures will present the final demonstration of the day at 2:30 p.m. Brian Roberts will present the ins-and-outs of paddleboard fishing to guests.

“Delmarva Board Sports is excited to present BOTE Paddleboard Fishing by Brian Roberts on Saturday at the Delaware Outdoor Expo,” said Janis Markopoulos, of Delmarva Board Sport Adventures. “Brian is a licensed guide who specializes in saltwater fly fishing excursions and lessons.

“In addition to guiding, Brian Roberts competes in some of the biggest saltwater fishing tournaments in the world. He won the 2010 White Marlin Open (in Ocean City, Maryland) with a 97.5 pound White Marlin that earned him $856,507.”

Nearly 70 vendors will set up shop at the Delaware Outdoor Expo, including Cabela’s, Carlisle’s Marine, Delaware State Chapter NWTF, Delaware State Parks, Diamond Motor Sports, i.g. Burton and Tow Boat U.S.

Attendees will get a chance to check out lures and tackle, decoys, game calls, surf fishing, fly fishing, archery, taxidermy, apparel, charter boat trips, paddleboards, dog trainers, dog collars and leashes and others.

In addition, eight food trucks will offer full menus, with everything from Nathan’s Hot Dogs to Greek cuisine, Cajun delicacies and classic American fare. Fifer Orchards will bake their apple cider donuts on site.

Door prizes will be given away every half hour and grand prize drawings – which will take place at 3 p.m. – include a Tracker Topper 1036 Jon boat from Carlisle’s Marine, a weekend stay at a Killen’s Pond cabin from Delaware State Parks, a Husqvarna Professional String Trimmer from Baker’s Power & Turf and more.

Delaware State News staff writer Mike Finney can be reached at mfinney@newszap.com.

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