I grew up around hunters. I spent a great deal of time at my great aunt’s house in the mountains as a child, and her three sons were avid hunters. I slept in a room with stuffed deer heads adorning the walls and never thought anything of it.
When I was twelve, I was taken to the shooting range – a deserted area with tin cans lined up on a fence – to learn how to shoot. I took one shot, flew backwards, and handed the gun back. I was not meant to be a hunter. Apparently, neither were my great aunt’s sons’ children. None of them took up hunting. Neither did my brothers who were offered the chance to learn.
The fact that those in my generation didn’t continue to hunt even though we came from a long line of hunters isn’t unusual. We didn’t need to kill our own meat. We had the grocery store and the McDonald’s drive-thru. We didn’t need hunting for recreation. We had MTV and Ms. Pacman.
My generation lost connection with the true origins of our meat came from quickly. Actually, we lost connection with the origins of where most of our food came from. But many in my generation and those after it are beginning to connect again. Some of us are planting kitchen gardens. Some of us are learning to bake bread from scratch. Some of us are raising chickens in our backyards. And now, it seems, some of us are learning to hunt.
The New York Times reports that we’re taking classes and forming clubs to learn what my uncles wanted to teach me when I was twelve – hunting. In Virginia, thirty-one year old Jackson Landers teaches a class called Deer Hunting for Locavores to foodies who are ready to hunt, clean and cook local, free-range meat.
In San Francisco, there are 55 members in the Bull Moose Hunting Society that was started by two twenty-somethings. When they meet they share what they know about hunting knowledge and the meat from their hunts. They hope to have chapters in most major cities eventually.
You can learn a little more about the Deer Hunting for Locavores class in the video below.