2018 NAFA Meet Lubbock, Texas
By Co-Chaired Brandi Nickerson & Corey Roelke
We are happy to announce NAFA will once again be returning to the great state of Texas for the 2018 NAFA Meet. I’m excited to report that we will be returning to Lubbock and the MCM Elegante. Planning has been ongoing for several months and we’re pleased to have commitments from some incredible and engaging nightly speakers. We will again be celebrating our incredible supporters and vendors and with our, now annual, Vendor Appreciation Night. Hopefully game populations remain above average, 2014 proved to be a historic year for NAFA members. Things are lining up for another incredible NAFA Meet!”
The remaining information pertains to the meet hotel, regulations, weathering yard rules, raffle coordination, registration, and other important meet details. If you need to reach us, Brandi can be reached at email@example.com or 940-507-0333 and Corey at firstname.lastname@example.org or 817-575-7256.
2018 Annual NAFA Field Meet
Dates: December 2-7, 2018
Hotel: MCM Eleganté Hotel and Suites
801 Ave Q
Lubbock, Texas 79401
Room rates: $85/night/room or $115/night/suite.
(Price includes breakfast for up to 4 people per day per room.)
Cancellation Policy: Full amount of the registration fee will be refunded if written cancellation notice is received no later than November 10th. After this date, refunds will not be possible. (Written notification must be via email to email@example.com or USPS to 7828 Hood St., Fort Worth, TX 76135.).
Reservations: As is customary, MCM Elegante will start accepting reservations on May 1st, 2018. Make your reservations early! At this time we have not negotiated preferred rates at any overflow hotels. We will revisit this if there is a need. To make reservations please call 806-763-1200 or make reservations online at a special NAFA attendees only page setup by the MCM Elegante for our group. Go to: https://reservations.travelclick.com/86204?groupID=2249743#/guestsandrooms
Hunting Information: Visiting and hunting in Texas is simple. No import permits or health certificates are required for you or your hunting partners. All you will need is an out of state hunting permit; $48 for a 5 day permit or $315 for the whole year – available at any location that sells hunting licenses. Endorsements or stamps you may need depend on your target quarry – Upland Game ($7) and Migratory Bird ($7). (Don’t forget a Federal Duck Stamp if you don’t already have yours.)
Non-Resident Trapping: For those interested in trapping while attending the NAFA meet, there are occasionally Harris’s hawks found in and around Lubbock. A two hour drive south to the Midland/Odessa area will yield larger populations for those who may be interested in trapping or watching Harris’s in their natural element. Prairie falcons and merlins are also found in and around Lubbock. The permit application can be found at http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/business/permits/land/wildlife/falconry/
(*The fee is $378. Please give Texas Parks and Wildlife plenty of advanced notice if you intend to go trapping so they can issue you the appropriate permit.)
Weathering Yard: Brandon Borquist will again handle this very important responsibility. Brandon and his team are ultimately responsible for the safely of all our birds while in the yard. If you have any questions Brandon can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 307-337-7394.
Please remember, the Yard Warden has final authority on everything as it relates to the weathering yard. The yard rules are as follows
No tid-bitting or feeding is allowed in or near the weathering yard. Perches should not be taller than the height of the bird Birds need to be tied short, i.e. fit within a 4′ X 4′ (16sq. ft.) area. No dogs allowed in the weathering yard (or at the gate entry area.) No Loitering in the yard (please keep story telling in the yard to a minimum) No photography inside the yard. (There are exceptions, and may require an escort. Please inquire at the gate).All transmitters must be turned off in the yard. (We will periodically sweep the yard and turn off any we find) The Yard Warden has final authority.
To add the above, because this is not a covered yard, nor is your bird the only bird there, the following rules have been added:
a) No “fishing tackle” (coastal locks, etc.) allowed past micro sized raptors.
b) No threaded links, spring clips, split rings allowed.
c) Portable perches must be anchored.
d) Take-apart perches: birds must be tied to the spike/anchored to the spot.
These add-ons have all come about due to incidents in the past. Though none of them caused a death or permanent loss, their failures did result in escapes and/or an injury to other’s birds and have been banned from the NAFA weathering yard. If you have any concerns, don’t hesitate to ask Brandon of his crew. We try our best to check every bird’s gear as they come into the yard the first time. We will be checking gear every day, throughout the day while your birds are in our care.
Please remember, the wardens have the final say.
In 2013 NAFA enacted a system of fines and rental fees and those are as follows…
Equipment rental and late fees in the weathering yard:
At the complete discretion of the Weathering Yard Wardens… Perches may be rented for $10 the first day, $15 the second day with a two day maximum. Late fees for leaving your bird out past yard hours is $20 per occurrence.
Raffle Coordinator: I am pleased to announce that Krys Langevin has agreed to serve as the NAFA Rafflemeister. Krys can be reached at email@example.com and 817-528-9743. Raffles are held on various nights throughout the week with the prizes getting bigger and better as the week goes on culminating in the grand finale on Friday night. If you have ever wondered how you can help NAFA then here’s your chance. The income from the nightly raffles are key to NAFA’s finances, your raffle donations are imperative and much appreciated. Be creative. Remember, NAFA Meets have become a family event and there are plenty of spouses and kids attending and participating in the nightly raffles, so the items do not always have to be falconry related. If you would like to donate, please drop Krys a line and ask him what he needs or what you can bring. If you can’t make it to the meet and would like to make a donation, we can help figure out a way to get your donation to the Meet.
Registration Coordinator: Brandi has volunteered to be the registration coordinator again. Brandi can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 940-507-0333. There will be multiple opportunities throughout the week to check in and pick up preregistration packets or to register onsite. Those dates and times will be announced online at a later date.
Vendor Coordinator: Mario Nickerson will be coordinating vending this year. His contact info is email@example.com or 817-751-5775. The MCM Elegante has 15,000-square-foot meeting space, which features a 7,000-square-foot conference center as its centerpiece. That means there is a lot of room for evening meetings followed by nightly vending. If you are a falconry equipment vendor this is an opportunity to meet and hawk your wares to a collective audience of falconers. To make things easier on vendors we have reserved a block of first floor rooms, close to the vending are, just for vendors. To ensure you are assigned one of these rooms please contact Mario no later than October 1st. This is a first come first serve opportunity for a first floor room. Vending will be open Sunday through Thursday with a special vendor raffle and meet and greet on Monday night.
Land Acquisition: Corey will also be spearheading the land acquisition this year and he has some great ideas to help procure more land as well as inventive ways for you to locate all land available to NAFA. More info to come about that! Again, Corey can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 817-575-7256.
Falconry Concierge (formerly Foreign Liaison): Peter Nolan has become the mainstay when it comes to arranging outings for our visiting guests. We are adding a special section to the new NAFA Field Meet Facebook page for visiting guests to sign up well in advance to ensure we can better arrange to get you out in the field. If you have any questions or special requests Peter can be reached at email@example.com. Peter can arrange hawking parties for just about anyone, foreign guests, locals, and or anyone that wants to just go see something different flown on game. Trapping excursions are also popular activities for guests visiting from places where that don’t have the same luxuries and privileges we are lucky to have here in the US.
Peter is one of a kind, with his Aussie accent (making him hard to understand at times), incredible personality, he is very approachable, hard to miss, and always smiling; he is the perfect person for the position. If you want to take someone out hawking or want to arrange seeing some hawking that is not available in your area give Peter a shout.