April 2021 News/Columns

THE GREAT OUTDOORS, by Larry Whiteley

The Great Outdoors


By Larry Whiteley



There’s something really refreshing about getting outside. Worrying is hard to do when you are surrounded by nature. If you’re like most of us, you are definitely in need of what the outdoors offers us.

A new report conducted by the Outdoor Foundation, shows that 2020 had Americans escaping to the outdoors to get away from a pandemic, politics, a divided nation, the economy, negative news and all the other things.

Camping grew 28% with 7.9 million participants. 8.1 million more Americans hiked in 2020 than 2019 which was a 16.3 percent increase. Freshwater fishing rose 8.6 percent, adding 3.4 million anglers. In all, more than half of all Americans took part in outdoor activities in 2020. Millions more of us took ourselves outside and that is encouraging.

The outdoors just might be the best medicine we can take. It is good for everyone. Hiking, hunting, fishing, boating, camping, birding or simply sitting in the sun beats sitting around worrying about things we have no control over. April is here. It’s a great time to rediscover the simple things in life. So, what are you waiting for? Get out there and enjoy spring and remember, the outside is good for your inside.


“I go to nature to be soothed and healed, and to have my senses put in tune once more.” ~ John Burroughs, American Naturalist


Male turkeys are called gobblers, because they are the only ones that can make the gobbling sound. Each male turkey has his own unique gobbling “technique,” and combines it with strutting to attract potential mates. Female turkeys communicate through clucks and small, chirp-like noises that say to the gobbler “Come here big boy” or “Later, I have a headache”


As you fill out your tax returns this month or pay to have them done, I thought you might like to know where some of your hard-earned dollars go when the government gets them from you.

$384,989 was spent on a research grant to study the reproductive anatomy of  ducks. Alaska’s Denali National Park is home to a small rustic outhouse at the beginning of a hiking trail that was built with $99,000 of our tax dollars, $325,525 was spent on something that proved something none of us men were even questioning—couples are happier when the woman calms down after an argument. No, I am not making any of this up and believe me there are a lot more examples than these.

You can, as an American citizen, exercise your option to refuse to file a tax return and then dream about spending your money on hunting and fishing trips while you’re in Leavenworth prison for 5 to 7 years. That’s something to think about while you work on your return.


“The taxpayer – that’s someone who works for the federal government but doesn’t have to take the civil service examination.”    ~ Ronald Reagan

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