Hometown: Sapulpa, Okla.
Hometown Chapter: Three Rivers Limbhangers
NWTF member since: 2004
NWTF involvement: Pattie is the banquet chairman and Women in the Outdoors coordinator for her chapter. Last year, she was recognized as Oklahoma's NWTF Volunteer of the Year at a statewide appreciation banquet.
NWTF: What keeps you busy when you're not volunteering with the NWTF?
Pattie Bing: I have a cleaning, remodeling and restoration business, so I get to clean up everyone's messes and make a few of my own. My husband, Richard, and I have six children and 12 grandchildren.
NWTF: How did you get involved with the NWTF?
PB: One day, my husband and my son, Randy, were talking about hunting, and I just felt left out. I wanted to be able to relate to them. I didn't want to hunt; I just wanted to relate.
Then I heard about a Women in the Outdoors event, and Richard said he'd pay for me to go for my birthday. After attending that first event, I could not stop talking about it when I came home. Richard just beamed. Now he tells people they're crazy if they don't get their wives involved, because I'm his hunting partner now. We're going to South Dakota in April to hunt Merriam's wild turkeys with 10 other NWTF chapter members.
NWTF: What are some of the things your chapter has been doing?
PB: We have what we call a 12-month chapter, which means our chapter is active doing something every month. We usually meet on the first Thursday of the month.
We perform community service projects throughout the year, because we believe our community needs to see us giving back -- and having fun doing it.
Our chapter not only hosts Women in the Outdoors and JAKES outreach events, we also participate in the Turkey Hunters Care program, host sanctioned still target shoots, chili cook offs and many other events. The Three Rivers Limbhangers Chapter found that the more people see us in the community, giving back and having fun, the more they want to be a part of our chapter.
NWTF: What kind of classes does your chapter offer at its Women in the Outdoors events?
PB: Very few organizations can boast that they offer something for everyone, but the NWTF sure can. Our chapter has 24 classes scheduled for our next event. We're offering traditional classes like shotgunning and archery, but we've also added paintball, basket weaving, antler jewelry crafting, soap making, container gardening and wall climbing.
Our chapter held a sanctioned still target shoot once and found that few people knew how to shoot from a seated position. We made it a class at our JAKES event, and it was a huge success. Now we're going to hold the same class at our Women in the Outdoors event.
NWTF: How has the Women in the Outdoors program changed your outlook on hunting and the outdoors?
PB: I wasn't a traditional outdoorswoman before getting involved with Women in the Outdoors. I was a girly-girl who didn't want to get dirty. But now I'm having fun, and that's all that matters to me.
I think it is important that women don't put fences around our minds. You don't have to be the outdoorsy-type to enjoy Women in the Outdoors and the NWTF. Just get out there and try something new. The classes are about hands-on learning. They're not intimidating at all. Plus, you never know who you're going to meet when you're involved with Women in the Outdoors. Even if you come to an event by yourself, I guarantee you will leave with 50 new friends. I almost feel like I didn't start enjoying the world until I found Women in the Outdoors.
NWTF: What do you love most about spending time in the outdoors and being involved with the Women in the Outdoors program?
PB: I like that I learn something every time I go in the woods. And it's wonderful to watch the outdoors wake up in the morning, the process of changing from night to light, and then going back in the evening and watching it all in reverse. It's a miracle.
Richard and I do something together every weekend. We fish bass tournaments, and since I got involved with the NWTF and Women in the Outdoors, we now hunt together. We sit and talk for hours about hunting, four-wheeling, fishing -- you name it. We have so many common interests now.
I love the Mark Twain quote: "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than the ones you did. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream."
My new motto is, I'm going to try everything once, twice if I like it and forever if I love it. I didn't have that mentality before I found Women in the Outdoors.
Richard says, "Life is such an adventure now!" And he's right. We never know what each day is going to hold.