POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. – Most folks who like to hunt and fish say it’s about more than bagging a pheasant or hooking a trout; it’s about sportsmanship and the need to protect natural resources.
And no one knows that better than Poughkeepsie resident Ken Rose, who is about to be inducted into the New York State Outdoorsmen Hall of Fame.
Rose, who has spent his life paying it forward, was nominated by the Federation of Dutchess County Fish & Game Clubs for the well-deserved honor.
The federation last year also honored Rose with a lifetime achievement award.
Not only is he the force behind Dutchess’ “Get Hooked on Fishing” program, Rose helped develop at youth pheasant hunt for 12- to 15-year-olds and launched a “Hunters Helping the Hungry” program.
By reaching beyond the sportsmen and women in his community, Rose has “touched the lives of youngsters too young to hunt, the elderly and the needy, as well as people who have never hunted or fished,” said Anthony Pittore, chairman of the federation’s board.
The “Hooked” program at Morgan Lake in Poughkeepsie has served more than 20,000 boys and girls, many of whom have come back to the program as adult volunteers.
Rose “almost single-handed” raised more than $100,000 for prizes and food for the weekend of trout fishing, Pittore said.
Another of Rose’s achievements includes the distribution of venison to local food programs.
The deer meat, donated by hunters and landowners, has been used in nearly half a million meals for the needy, Pittore said.
Meanwhile, the pheasant program has introduced about 1,000 youngsters to upland bird hunting.
Not only does it teach outdoor skills, it helps the kids understand the need to create and protect the bird’s habitat, Pittore said. They also are taught the value of fish and game laws and how to hunt in a safe and responsible manner.
Rose has been the county’s fish stocking chairman for more than three decades.
He and his team of volunteers have distributed about 2 million trout in local streams and lakes.
Most of the fish come from the state Department of Environmental Conservation hatcheries and some are provided by the federation from private operations.
Rose is a life member of Trout Unlimited and was a member of the Stony Kill Foundation’s board of directors.
The foundation supports Stony Kill Farm’s environmental conservation education center, Pittore said.
Rose also loves to share the tradition of sports, Pittore said.
He was inducted into the Dutchess County Sports Museum Hall of Fame and served on its board of directors.
In nominating Rose for the Outdoorsmen Hall of Fame, Pittore noted that he “has touched the lives of thousands of people because of his devotion to sharing the traditions we all love.”
“It would be all but impossible to know how many young people grew into adulthood with an appreciation for preserving our outdoor heritage, and with a better understanding of the need to conserve our natural resources,” the chairman added.
Rose and other inductees will have their plaques displayed at the Hall of Fame museum in Vails Mills, which is located in upstate Fulton County.
They will be honored at the NYSOHOF’s annual banquet on Saturday, April 29, at the Rusty Nail restaurant in Canastota in neighboring Madison County.
Registration begins at 5 p.m. The dinner starts at 6 p.m. and is followed by the presentations.
Reservations must be made by April 22.
To make reservations, call (315) 363-3896 or (315) 829 – 3588, or by emailing Leo Maloney at email@example.com, or firstname.lastname@example.org.