The Fun Hunt is just for fun. It's not a test nor a contest. Your dog doesn't need to honor nor be steady to participate. Beginner hunters, whether they be dogs or people, are more than welcome!
Anyone with a Small Munsterlander is invited to attend and hunt. If you are interested in getting a Small Munsterlander please come as a visitor. The Fun Hunt is a great way to see lots of Munsters of all ages, sexes, sizes and colors. If you're a breeder and would like to invite your puppy buyers, we'd love to have them! If you have friends or family that would enjoy the weekend, please invite them too. They don't have to hunt and they don't have to own a Small Munsterlander. So spread the word!
If possible, plan to arrive Friday evening, March 22nd. Hunt twice on Saturday and on Sunday, or as much time as you can spend. If you are able to stay over Sunday night, you may scratch hunt the leftovers (usually more than 100 birds) on Monday morning, March 25th (no charge). Cost for hunting at the Fun Hunt will be $50/session for adults and $25/session for youth hunters (under age 16). Youth hunters must hunt with an adult sponsor. Iowa Residents under age 16 will not need a hunting license.
Shared accommodations at Brush Dale, in the main floor and lower-level of VIP Lodge
will be $10/night/person. Dogs are not allowed in the VIP Lodge. Your dog may sleep in his/her crate in the heated Hawkeye Lodge or stay in one of our guest kennels. Accommodations allowing dogs are available at Whispering Meadows Resort
in Springbrook, just 7 miles from Brush Dale and at More Than a Room Guest House
in Bellevue, 10 miles from Brush Dale. Dogs are allowed in the Resort cabins (you must bring your own bed covers) and in the Guest House (must be crated). If you would like to camp at Brush Dale for $5/night, the outside facilities may still be shutoff for the winter, but we can plug you in. You may camp at Whispering Meadows for $10/night. There is an electrical hookup adjacent to each cabin. Make your reservations for Brush Dale, Whispering Meadows, or More Than a Room lodging/camping as part of your Fun Hunt Reservation. There are also several hotels in the area that allow dogs. See the Lodging
page for information.
Another option you may want to consider is boarding your dog(s). There are several facilities close by and they will even give your dog a bath and nail clipping before you head for home! The closest boarding facility to Brush Dale is less than 6 miles away - K9 Comfort
With the exception of Friday night, meals will be catered at Brush Dale. Friday night will be potluck. Please bring a wild game dish, appetizer, salad, vegetable and/or dessert to share. You won't want to miss the steak fry on Saturday night! Brush Dale does not have a liquor license, so you must bring your own alcoholic beverages. Bringing a snack and/or a beverage to share has become a tradition. Soda, bottled water, tea, coffee and donuts will be provided.
As in prior years, professional photographer, Denise Heath, will accompany various hunting parties in the field to take photos of their dogs in action. Denise will also be available before, between and following the hunting sessions to take requested photos of your dogs. The photos will be available for purchase a few days after the Fun Hunt in a variety of sizes and formats for an extremely reasonable price. Check out photos from past Fun Hunts!
We will utilize up to 4 fields in order to keep the hunting parties to a maximum of 4 guns and 4 dogs. Non-gunning spectators are welcome to walk along. Each day will be divided into four, 1.5-hour hunting sessions (8:00am-9:30am, 10:15am-11:45am, 12:30pm-2:00pm, 2:45pm-4:15pm). We will remix the hunting parties and switch fields so everyone gets to hunt with as many different dogs and hunters as possible, in different fields. Each hunter may signup to hunt a maximum of two sessions per day. You may request to hunt one session with a particular person. You are welcome to bring multiple dogs to the Fun Hunt, but you may only hunt with one dog per session. If you also have a dog of a different breed, or your guest's dog is of a different breed, you are welcome to hunt with him/her. After the 4th session groups come in, you may form your own group to go out until dusk to hunt the missed birds.
In prior years, more than 300 pheasants have been released over the weekend. That is a ton of bird planting! Getting all the birds out into the fields in a timely manner is quite challenging. Therefore, we need volunteers to help plant birds. If you are able, please volunteer to plant birds for at least one session.
This is a non-profit event, with participants paying only for actual costs. Each $50 pays for the release of 4 pheasants. Depending upon price and availability, you may be able to purchase additional pheasants or chukar to be released during your hunting session(s).
A Preserve hunting license ($20.00) or Iowa Resident hunting license ($32) may be purchased at Brush Dale. If you were born after January 1, 1972, you must have completed a hunter safety course, else you will need to purchase an Apprentice License ($123, info & qualifications
). (If you are 18 years or older, the hunter safety course may be completed 100% online here
for $29.) You must wear blaze orange (hat, shirt and/or vest) while in the field, whether or not you are carrying a gun. Lead shot is OK. We recommend size 6 shot. The maximum shot size allowed for the Fun Hunt is size 5. Safety comes first!