Felch trapper to join national experts at Escanaba event

Ken Luedtke harvests a beaver through the ice. Luedtke will demonstrate winter trapping techniques at 1:30 p.m. Eastern time July 26 during the annual U.P. Trappers Convention/Outdoor Expo in Escanaba.

ESCANABA — Local outdoor expert Ken Luedtke of Felch will do a demonstration on winter beaver trapping at the U.P. Trappers Convention/Outdoor Expo set for July 26 and 27 at the U.P. State Fairgrounds in Escanaba.

Luedtke began trapping at the age of 13. Now, 45 years later, he is still passionate about the sport. Along with his expertise in the outdoors, Luedtke is one of the best fur handlers around. He has skinned, fleshed and stretched as many as 60 beaver in a single day and has put up more than 100 raccoon in a day.

Luedtke processed fur professionally for North American Fur Auctions for 10 years. That included processing fur from all fur bearers, which would number in the thousands. He is an expert trapper as well, once capturing 49 beaver in a day and 450 in a season.

“I love teaching and sharing my knowledge,” he said. “I have trapped, processed and graded fur with some of the best in the business. And I look forward to sharing this knowledge with other veteran and beginning trappers.”

Luedtke’s demonstration at 1:30 p.m. Eastern time July 26 will focus on under-ice beaver harvests using snares and/or traps. He will be joined by many other outdoor experts giving presentations as well.

Robert L. Whitens, left, and Char Liebergen of Forward Financial Credit Union present a check for $100 to Mike Lewis, center, regional secretary for the Upper Michigan Trappers Association. The donation is for the 57th annual U.P. Trappers Convention/Outdoor Expo in Escanaba.

Included in the lineup are: Al Dubord, trapping Alaska; Ed Schneider, coyotes; Les Johnson, predator calling; Lesel Reuwsaat, coyotes/cats; Mike Kain, beaver handling; Harry Nestell, raccoons; and Jeff Dunlap, coyotes.

The event will have something of interest to the whole family. Hundreds of vendors and tailgaters will have a variety of equipment and supplies for sale. For the youngsters, there will be trap throw and bean bag games, free pellet gun/archery shooting under adult supervision, and the popular free fishing pond.

Buildings on the grounds will be full of exhibits, including pottery, antiques, crafters, and sewing and quilting to name a few.

Hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Eastern time July 26 and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. July 27. Admission is $5 for both days, with kids 12 and younger admitted free. Camping on the grounds is available.

“Our convention continues to draw more attendees each year,” said Jim Fornetti, a longtime member of U.P. Trappers. “With the vast array of things to see and do at this event, it is sure to be a great experience for all.”

For more information, go to www.conventionreg.uptrappers.com, or contact event coordinator Roy Dahlgren at 906-399-1960 or trapperroy@outlook.com.

COMMENTS