Happy Holidays from the Iowa DNR Hunter Education and Shooting Sports Program Staff!  Thank you for all that you do for outdoor recreation in Iowa!

2018 Certified Instructor Workshops Set - Register Today!

Dates for the 2018 Certified Instructor Workshops have been set.  Check out the dates and locations below and get registered today!

Date                            Location                                                         Registration Link

March 13, 2018           Swiss Valley Nature Center (Peosta)              Register Now

March 15, 2018           Annett Nature Center (Indianola)                    Register Now

March 15, 2018           Driftless Area Visitor Center (Lansing)            Register Now

March 16, 2018           Annett Nature Center (Indianola)                    Register Now

March 17, 2018           Iowa State Patrol Post 13 (Mt. Pleasant)        Register Now

March 17, 2018           Kent Park Education Center (Oxford)             Register Now

March 19, 2018           Swan Lake Education Center (Carroll)           Register Now

March 19, 2018           Apex Shooting Range (Fostoria)                    Register Now

March 20, 2018           Kennedy Park (Fort Dodge)                           Register Now

March, 20, 2018          Horseshoe Falls Lodge (Central City)            Register Now

March 20, 2018           LeMars Sportsmans Club (LeMars)               Register Now

March 21, 2018           Iowa State Patrol District 8 (Mason City)       Register Now

March 21, 2018           Mahaska CCB (New Sharon)                        Register Now

March 22, 2018           McFarland Park (Ames)                                 Register Now

March 22, 2018           Sac CCB (Sac City)                                       Register Now

March 24, 2018           Davenport Ikes (Davenport)                          Register Now

March 31, 2018           Anderson Nature Center (Red Oak)              Register Now


Iowa Department of Natural Resources Digital Mentoring Program

Why digital mentoring?

  • Allows folks to help without dedicating hours to in-person mentoring.
  • Enables users to get real-time answers to questions that are holding them back.
  • Provides incentives to those who help answer user's questions.
  • Engages volunteers and staff members in the local "Chatter"
  • Offer next steps to participants at all stages of the adoption sequence
  • Promotes programs and events

The Iowa DNR is joining forces with other state agencies, Cabela's, NWTF, National Deer Alliance, MTB - Happy Fishing, Yamaha, etc. to bring mentoring to a whole new level. Mentoring today comes in many forms especially when it comes to mentoring our younger generations.  Having a trustworthy resource at the touch of your finger tips can be crucial when it comes to someone taking that "next step" in participating in hunting, angling, recreational shooting, etc.  Through the Powderhook Digital Mentoring App we are able to embrace technology and put it to good use by providing real-time answers and advice to our new and/or upcoming outdoor recreationists.

Becoming a digital mentor is easy.  Just simply follow the "become a digital mentor" link below, to download the app and create your account.  Who knows, you may even learn a new thing or two yourself along your journey of helping others get started or expand their participation!

Our goal is to have 150 digital mentors in place by March 31, 2018.  At that time we are going to begin promoting the app to our existing hunters, anglers, hunter education graduates and shooting sports participants.  We want to have a solid platform of knowledgeable mentors in place before getting the word out.  With that being said, traffic may be slow over the next couple of months but that will allow our digital mentors to get comfortable with how the app functions and begin making posts and responding to questions.

Below is a "Digital Mentoring Best Practices" document for all staff and volunteers to review who plan on becoming digital mentors.  It provides you some general guidance when responding and making posts on social media platforms.  If you have any questions about the app in general, becoming a digital mentor or if you come across a questionable post by a user or a digital mentor please don't hesitate to reach out.  Please send an email tohuntereducation@dnr.iowa.gov or contact Megan Wisecup (515) 238-4968 or Rachel Ladd (515) 729-6037.  

For a quick overview of how the Powderhook App works check out this video

We will be talking more in depth about how to become a digital mentor at the upcoming certified hunter education instructor workshops this March.  We also will be sharing a list of "topics" straight from our hunter education graduates on what they want to receive more information about to help aid instructors and staff on what to post about.

Digital Mentor Incentives

Through local and national partners, digital mentors will have the opportunity to earn incentives.  The more active a digital mentor is on the app, the more opportunities they will have to earn special deals and prizes.   

Digital Mentoring Resources

Powderhook App - Behind the Scenes

Become a Digital Mentor 

Digital Mentoring Best Practices

IHEIA Annual Banquet


Don't forget to mark your calendars for the 2018 Iowa Hunter Education Instructor Association Banquet.  Come on out to show your support for your fellow volunteer instructors and hunter education in Iowa! The banquet will be held on Saturday, July 14, 2018 at the Ottumwa Izaak Walton League located at 11077 90th Street, Ottumwa, IA.  As part of this year’s banquet we will be providing some instruction and a fun, friendly competition from 2PM - 5PM on the following programs/activities: Scholastic Clay Target Program, Scholastic Action Shooting Program (Rifle & Pistol), NASP IBO 3D Challenge Program and What’s It Room (one of the tools used during the hiring process for Conservation Officers).  Banquet and raffle tickets will be available for purchase at the 2018 Hunter Education Instructor Workshops.  Instructors will also be able to renew or purchase new association memberships at the workshops.  

  • Renew or purchase a new or lifetime membership at one of the Spring Workshops and you will be entered into a drawing for a special gift.
  • This year all new, renewals or lifetime membership purchases will be entered into a drawing for a firearm.
  • Instructors who attend the 2017 IHEIA Annual Banquet will be entered into a drawing for a firearm or bow.
  • $2.00 raffle tickets will be sold at workshops and the night of the banquet for a chance to win either a $300, $150, $100 or $50 Visa Gift Card (4 winners will be drawn).

We Need Your Help!

We would like to present a certificate of recognition to one individual in each county who best exemplifies the spirit of volunteerism and dedication to hunter education.  Please take a few minutes to nominate a fellow instructor for recognition.

2018 Instructor Recognition Nomination Form

2018/2019 IHEIA Membership Form

Upcoming Range Safety Officer Courses - Save the Dates!


The NRA Range Safety Officer program was developed in response to the demand for a nationally recognized range safety officer certification.  NRA Range Safety Officers are people who possess the knowledge, skills and attitude essential to organizing, conducting and supervising safe shooting activities and range operations.

Instructors are responsible for the NRA Certifications fees.  For NRA members the fee is $30.00 and for non-members the fee is $50.  The certification is valid for 2 years.  All course fees will be covered by the Iowa DNR.  Be sure to let the instructor know that you are a Volunteer Hunter Education Instructor so the course fees are waived.

Tentative Dates/Locations:

     February 3, 2018  (Clinton County)

     March 24, 2018  (Story County)

More information will be shared in the January E-Newsletter including the finalized dates, locations and registration links.


2018 Iowa State NASP Tournament - Volunteers Needed!

Are you interested in helping youth? Do you or your spouse enjoy reading a book or playing games on your electronic device?  Like Archery? If any of these topics sparks your interest, we could use your help!

The Iowa DNR’s Archery in the Schools Program is looking for volunteers to assist the 12th annual State Archery Tournament March 9-11, 2018. The Iowa DNR Shooting Sports program will be hosting the 2018 Iowa State National Archery in the Schools Program (NASP®) Tournament and the International Bowhunters Organization (IBO) NASP® 3D State Tournament.  Student archers from all over Iowa will be traveling to Des Moines to compete in NASP Archery. In order to safely run this large event, with 1,500+ archers we are in need of additional assistance.

Volunteers are needed in different capacities. If you are not familiar with archery or the Archery in the Schools Program, that is all right! There are positions that do not need archery experience and we also have online tutorials for more information on how to be an archery lane judge. Lastly, if you need any assistance while volunteering their will be a contact person nearby. We will also do our best to have additional volunteers to relieve you for breaks. There are a few shifts to choose from below or anytime you are willing to offer is appreciated. Follow the links below to view and sign up for the available positions and shifts.

NASP® 3D State Tournament.Signup: www.SignUpGenius.com/go/30E0A4CA9AD22A0F94-20181

NASP® Bullseye State Tournament Signup:www.signupgenius.com/go/30e0a4ca9ad22a0f94-2018

Below is a description of the different volunteer positions needed:

• Lane Judge: Ensure the youth are scoring the targets correctly, make sure they are bubbling 1 score per line, change target faces, erase if there is a scoring error (a more detailed description will be sent to you and NASP Nationals is creating a YouTube Video).https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FMy-JOJQIqg

• Flagger: Ensures the line is safe. We have Flaggers on the range for safety behind and on the shooting line and waiting lines. The flagger watches the lane judges, archers and general public for any unsafe acts or intentions.  With the continued growth and expansion of NASP® in Iowa we could really use your assistance. Again, the level of archery experience for volunteers can vary from little to no experience or moderate to highly knowledgeable. If you are interested in reading the NASP® National, League and State rules they can be found online at www.iowadnr.gov/archery.

If you are available to assist at the Iowa NASP State Tournament event March 3-4, 2017 at the Jacobsen (Bullseye Tournament) and Elwell (3D Tournament) Buildings located on the Iowa State Fairgrounds please contact Donise Petersen by emailDonise.Petersen@dnr.iowa.gov or by phone 515-205-8709.



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