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#5656857 - 03/18/15 01:16 PM decoy hangover
Dave Speer Offline


Registered: 12/27/07
Posts: 4550
Loc: Austin
I spent a long weekend in Strongsville, Ohio for the 2015 show and competition of the Ohio Decoy Collectors and Carvers Association. It's 3 days of decoy extravaganza. Huge ballroom full of vendors and contests for all kinds of decoys, working gunners, decorative birds, fish decoys, flat art, you name it, it's there. A couple thousand birds at least, and a ton of great people to hang out with.


I packed up my birds as well as I could to avoid the luggage thugs from breaking my stuff.



A long layover in Chicago left me looking for true deep dish, which apparently isn't at the airport. They also hate Mt. Dew for some reason, so I had to resort to the closest I could get to a good pizza and beer.



Speaking of beer, we loaded up for the weekend.



Friday morning attended a paint seminar and learned a bunch of good stuff.




Saturday was the timed head whittling contest: hand tools only. I managed to slide a knife into my thumb and disqualify myself. Well, the show didn't mind a little blood but I could no longer push a knife due to the injury. You should see the other guy! He slipped and stabbed himself in the leg, hitting an artery. A hospital run ensued.



A couple of decoys that caught my eye Saturday afternoon on the post judging table. First up a fish decoy. Second up, a dove balanced to stand on a wire.




_________________________
Originally Posted By: wal1809
Anybody can follow along, not everybody can blaze a trail.


Dave Speer Wildlife Art @ HuntCrafted

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#5656858 - 03/18/15 01:16 PM Re: decoy hangover [Re: Dave Speer]
Dave Speer Offline


Registered: 12/27/07
Posts: 4550
Loc: Austin
Sunday is the big day for those of us that carve working decoys. The contest is called Wildfowler's Contest (Pool Singles). Essentially birds are thrown in the pool by species group. Judging is from a minimum of 20 feet away, no microscopes or decoy sniffing and licking allowed. A few kids are recruited as volunteers to arrange the birds and bring them back to the pool edge as they are eliminated, "worst" first until each category is down to 1st-3rd.



A side bet was placed between 4 of us but two reneged for various reasons. Whoever stayed in the pool the longest (the "best" bird, regardless if any of us won any ribbons) got to take home all the birds in the side bet. That yellow ribbon on my buddies bird on the right trumped my green ribbon, so he ended up with my bird. Good thing too, because he has goldeneyes where he hunts. I had the pleasure of doing that with him last year and man, has that guy got the birds.



This stylin' Eider caught my eye. I do not know who carved it.



A couple more of my contest birds. The teal in the foreground has a little piece of my dad's airplane from his wreck last year. My dad never hunted, but he raised me to love the outdoors. I miss him like hell every day.



On Monday I was supposed to check out of the motel and sit around the Cleveland airport for 4 hrs twiddling my thumbs, but a championship carver invited me to his shop instead. He showed me a few things and we had a great time in his shop and at the bar having a quiet one-on-one Sunday night after the crowds thinned out.



I hope to be lucky enough to attend this show every year as long as I am alive and healthy. It was an amazing time with hugely talented and friendly people.
_________________________
Originally Posted By: wal1809
Anybody can follow along, not everybody can blaze a trail.


Dave Speer Wildlife Art @ HuntCrafted

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#5656917 - 03/18/15 01:46 PM Re: decoy hangover [Re: Dave Speer]
aerangis Offline
Tracker

Registered: 09/05/08
Posts: 715
Loc: Nunya
Beautiful decoys. I'd have a hard time tossing those birds in a decoy bag, much less hunting over them.

I see another hobby on the horizon.

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#5656919 - 03/18/15 01:46 PM Re: decoy hangover [Re: Dave Speer]
wal1809 Online   content
THF Celebrity

Registered: 08/26/05
Posts: 10864
Loc: Texas
I sounds like a good time.
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#5657850 - 03/18/15 10:11 PM Re: decoy hangover [Re: Dave Speer]
Hopedale Offline
THF Trophy Hunter

Registered: 09/12/07
Posts: 5858
Loc: Central Texas
I guess you are feeling the decoy hangover. Sounds like you had a great time.

up on this post.
_________________________


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#5658026 - 03/19/15 04:02 AM Re: decoy hangover [Re: Dave Speer]
Fooshman Online   content
THF Celebrity

Registered: 07/26/06
Posts: 13681
Loc: Black Dog, Texas
up
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Custom Crosses and Plaques

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#5658168 - 03/19/15 07:41 AM Re: decoy hangover [Re: Dave Speer]
Tx Geese Offline
Tracker

Registered: 05/20/10
Posts: 674
That's awesome Dave! Glad you had a fun trip
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www.coastalprairieoutdoors.com

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#5658721 - 03/19/15 12:45 PM Re: decoy hangover [Re: Dave Speer]
beaversnipe Offline
THF Celebrity

Registered: 01/17/10
Posts: 14775
Loc: Terlingua,TX

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#5660234 - 03/20/15 11:35 AM Re: decoy hangover [Re: Dave Speer]
Marcstar Offline
THF Trophy Hunter

Registered: 11/06/06
Posts: 8544
Loc: Temple, TX
Wow...lots of great pieces there. Sounds like you had fun. Glad it was a good trip.
_________________________
Originally Posted By: wal1809


Dear Lord please bullwhip me for saying this but I agree, Marcstar is in the lead. Please nobody use this as a quote!!!

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#5660537 - 03/20/15 02:54 PM Re: decoy hangover [Re: Marcstar]
deckhand Offline
Veteran Tracker

Registered: 03/14/07
Posts: 2061
Loc: Gooberville, U.S. of A.
Looks like a great time!
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#5668201 - 03/24/15 11:52 PM Re: decoy hangover [Re: Dave Speer]
dogcatcher Online   content
THF Celebrity

Registered: 07/17/06
Posts: 77564
Loc: Abilene or on the road...
Those are some great looking decoys.
_________________________
Combat Infantryman, the ultimate hunter where the prey shoots back.
"Illegitimus non carborundum est"

_______ Old style calls for today's outdoorsman_________

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#5668925 - 03/25/15 02:15 PM Re: decoy hangover [Re: Dave Speer]
TexasEd Offline
THF Trophy Hunter

Registered: 09/27/07
Posts: 5000
Loc: Cedar Park, Texas
Dave, thanks for sharing.
I still remember your first posts here. Your immersion in this hobby and the skill level of your carvings is a long way from that starting point.
_________________________

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#5669084 - 03/25/15 04:10 PM Re: decoy hangover [Re: Dave Speer]
Capt.JVH Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 10/17/11
Posts: 306
Loc: Round Rock/ Lometa
Hey Dave, I read about that accident over on duckboats. It sounded pretty nasty. Good looking blocks you have. I had a Geoff Vine Canvasback he did for me that won first at that show a few years back but I donated it to my church for an auction. You were amongst the big boys at that show for sure. Cool post.

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#5669708 - 03/25/15 11:15 PM Re: decoy hangover [Re: Dave Speer]
TXBoss Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 03/25/15
Posts: 119
Loc: DFW
Thanks for sharing. A good chuckle on the carving injury.
_________________________
"Good judgment comes from experience, and a lot of that comes from bad judgment..." - W. Rogers

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#5669865 - 03/26/15 07:33 AM Re: decoy hangover [Re: Capt.JVH]
Dave Speer Offline


Registered: 12/27/07
Posts: 4550
Loc: Austin
Originally Posted By: Capt.JVH
I had a Geoff Vine Canvasback he did for me that won first at that show a few years back but I donated it to my church for an auction. You were amongst the big boys at that show for sure.


Love Geoff's work! It is a lot of fun to throw your work in the pool with the guys that write the books!
_________________________
Originally Posted By: wal1809
Anybody can follow along, not everybody can blaze a trail.


Dave Speer Wildlife Art @ HuntCrafted

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