Sportsmen’s expo this weekend

By: J.D. Richey Journal Outdoors Columnist
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Just as the sun has finally come out in the Valley and all everybody wants to do is get outside, the big playground of indoor fun, the Sacramento International Sportsmen’s Expo, has rolled into Cal Expo.
And yes, while the weather is spectacular for January, it’s still worth spending a day under the fluorescent lights to wander the aisles of what is now — thanks to the death of the San Mateo show — the largest outdoor expo in Nor Cal.
This year’s show promises to be a biggie. In addition to all the boats, guides, lodges and tackle companies on hand, the show will also feature: A major expansion of fly-fishing factory, retail and seminars, hosted by the American Fly Fishing Trade Association (Hall C); the NRA Hollywood Guns Museum display: Wayne, Die Hard, Eastwood, Luke Skywalker (Star Wars), Damon... more! Also new is the Orvis Fly Fishing 101 teaching program (free; next to Fisherman’s Warehouse booth).
The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation will feature an all-new Great Elk Tour and Eastmans’ Hunting Journals Trophy Deer Tour will also be on hand.
Don’t forget the Weekend Camp Cooking contest and daily cooking lessons and the free Spey-casting lessons by instructors Jeff Putnam and John Hazel.
Auburn’s finest bass angler, Skeet Reese, will be hanging around as will other top pros like Jay Yelas and John Murray.
Caught the NatGeo Channel’s show about California Game Wadens called “Wild Justice” yet? I can’t miss an episode. Well, several of the guys from that show plus “War in the Woods” authors Lt. John Nores Jr. and James Swan lead an expert panel that reveals how California Fish & Game wardens are fighting for your hunting and fishing spots.
One of everybody’s favorite outdoor authors, Tom Stienstra, and radio personality Bob Simms will yak ‘til the cows come home on hunting and fishing and you can learn how to cook what you catch and shoot at clinics hosted by Hank Shaw of
As usual, there will be all kinds of in-depth, how-to seminars put on by local experts and guides, including yours truly. I’ll be appearing at the California Sportsmen’s Theater today at 3 p.m. and then again on Saturday at 6 p.m. talking all about how to catch Delta and river stripers on topwater, swimbaits, jerk baits and more. Come on by and say howdy!
Show hours are: Friday, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tickets are $15 for adults and free for kids 15 and under. Active military personnel with a military I.D. card are also admitted free of charge.
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J.D. Richey is a 1986 Placer High graduate whose outdoors pieces have been published nationally. Find him online at