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BOW Inspires Iowa Women To Get Outdoors

SOLON, IOWA (KGAN/KFXA) - In less than a month, some Iowa women will come together to learn a brand new set of skills in the wilderness. They'll be marking the 20th anniversary of  a camp designed to get women involved in outdoor activities. It's called "Becoming an Outdoors Woman" or BOW.

The women choose from 20 different skills classes that involve the outdoors. Activities range from basic fishing to kayaking to even archery. 

Beth Haan of Marion will be attending her second BOW camp. She said that her experience last year blew her away.

Amazing is one of the first words that came to my mind, Haan said.

She said the camp inspired her. She was attracted to the idea of exploring activities she wouldnt normally do, or would consider male-oriented. The camp helps debunk the myth that most outdoor activities are for the guys.

 "51 percent of the population is not male, so thats obviously a large audience that we want to be reaching, Joe Wilkinson with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources said.

Haan said the shooting classes were her favorite.

"I really like the guns, I really like shooting bows and arrows," Haan said. Its something she had never done before camp.

Wilkinson explained its all part of bringing the outdoors to all Iowans.

"We want to give people an appreciation of the outdoors and you appreciate the outdoors more if youre taking part in it," Wilkinson said.

Its an appreciation Haan cant wait to share when she brings a friend this year to BOW.

Everybodys enthusiasm is just like you just catch onto it right away! Haan said.

The Becoming an Outdoors Woman Camp is September 20th 22nd     at the Springbrook Conservation Education Center northwest of Des Moines.
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