Thursday, December 2, 2021

DEC offers prize drawing for those who get vaccinated this month

conservationistGrand Prizes Include Lifetime Fishing and Hunting Licenses and Deluxe Equipment

All Entrants Receive Subscription to DEC’s ‘Conservationist’ Magazine and a Tree Seedling

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos announced the new ‘Take Your Shot for an Outdoor Adventure’ sweepstakes is now open. Launched last week by Governor Kathy Hochul, the COVID-19 vaccine incentive is intended to bolster vaccination rates among New Yorkers who enjoy the great outdoors. During the month of December, anyone that receives their first COVID-19 vaccine dose is eligible to enter the sweepstakes and a random drawing to win special prize packages tailored to anglers, hunters, and other outdoor enthusiasts.

Five entrants will be randomly selected to receive the Grand Prize and the opportunity to choose one of the following deluxe packages valued at approximately $2,000:

  • Fishing: Lifetime fishing license, fishing kayak, vest, rod and reel;
  • Bowhunter: Lifetime hunter and bowhunting license, high-quality crossbow package or compound bow package with ½ dozen bolts or arrows, ladder tree stand, safety harness/fall arrest system, and 10×42 binoculars;
  • Rifle hunter: Lifetime sportsman license, high-quality riflescope, ladder tree stand, safety harness/fall arrest system, and 10×42 binoculars;
  • Turkey hunter: Lifetime sportsman license, high-quality ground blind, turkey hunting vest, hen decoy pair, shotgun optical sight, slate call, and 10×42 binoculars; and
  • Birding: 20-60x spotting scope, 10×42 binoculars, bird feeder, bird seed, bird house, deluxe birding guide, and I Bird NY materials

Twenty-five entrants will be randomly selected to receive Second Tier prizes and the choice of one of the following packages, valued at approximately $1,000:

  • Fishing: Annual fishing license, fishing kayak, vest, rod and reel;
  • Bowhunter: Annual hunter and bowhunting license, high-quality crossbow OR compound bow package with ½ dozen bolts or arrows, a ladder tree stand, a safety harness/fall arrest system, and 8×42 binoculars;
  • Riflehunter: Annual hunting license, high-quality riflescope, a ladder tree stand, a safety harness/fall arrest system, and 8×42 binoculars;
  • Turkey hunter: Annual hunting license and turkey permit, high quality ground blind, turkey hunting vest, hen decoy, slate call, and 8×42 binoculars; and
  • Birder: 8×42 binoculars, birdfeeder, bird seed and I Bird NY materials.

The first 2,000 people to receive their first vaccination and enter the sweepstakes by Dec. 31, will receive a tree seedling from DEC’s Colonel William F. Fox Memorial Tree Nursery in Saratoga, and their choice of either a $25 gift card for a free night of camping at a DEC campground, or a $25 gift card to a major sporting goods retailer. In addition, the 2,000 sweepstakes entrants will receive a one-year subscription to DEC’s Conservationist magazine, which is currently celebrating its 75th year in publication.

Information about how to enter the sweepstakes is now available on DEC’s website. Prior to fulfillment of a hunting license and any associated privilege (e.g., bowhunting privilege), the recipient must complete a hunter education course and bowhunter education course (in the case of the bowhunter prize package) and present certificate(s) of completion.

All eligible, vaccinated entrants must adhere to all applicable requirements to receive a hunting or fishing license in New York State, including completion of required hunter education courses and other rules. For more information about hunting and freshwater fishing licenses, visit and

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Information attributed to NYSDEC is taken from press releases and news announcements from New York State's Department of Environmental Conservation.

18 Responses

  1. ADKresident says:

    Vaccination Sweepstakes? Asinine waste of money.

    Let me fix the headline:

    DEC uses tax funded 1,000’s of $$ for sweepstakes prizes in order to manipulate the population to conform to the government’s medical tyranny.

    For the record / argument sake: I am NOT an anti-vaxxer.

    • Richard Monroe says:

      Hmmm…Just for argument’s sake, let’s for a minute suppose that this DEC incentive encourages even a relatively small number of NYS folks who would not have otherwise gotten vaccinated to do so. Then, let’s imagine, and I suspect it is most likely statistically supported, that at least ONE of those individuals would have otherwise gotten COVID. Further, as frequently is the case, project that that infected individual would have infected other vulnerable family or community members around them, say an immuno-compromised cancer survivor, or their own aging grandmother. Then let’s say, again, just for argument’s sake, that as a result, that survivor or grandmother would have died as a result. Instead, as a result of the DEC’s “Vaccination Sweepstakes”, even ONE life was saved. Were those $$ well spent? I’d argue the headline should read: ” Vaccinations SAVE LIVES! DEC- BRAVO!”

      • ADKresident says:

        You may have been able to convince me this time last year with that nicely crafted response. But not this year. Not when I have witnessed the suppressing of information on early therapeutics, limiting public knowledge of alternative / post-Covid immune responses, the lack of long term testing for children, (who, we all know, are not in the category of immuno-compromised) and not to mention, purposely not releasing any risk data or side-effects of the vaccinations to which big phrama requested from the courts to not to have to release any vax data for 70 years- look it up for yourself! All which should be public knowledge! We also all now know anyone can carry and transmit the virus- whether you are vaxed or not. So that stance no longer holds any valid substance moving forward. And does anyone even care who is getting rich off this, including those in public office who own corporate shares and in bed with medical bureaucrats? You don’t think $$ plays a role in decision making ‘for the public” ?? Do I sound skeptical? You bet! But with valid reasons. Therefore, my response remains the same. I DO support vaccines, particularly for those most vulnerable, but am disgusted over the fact that the government is using this pandemic as a political football to divide citizens by cherry picking information that is released, not allowing for anyone to even question or maintain a differing medical opinion, while demanding we comply or else face consequences and backlash. People are free to believe what they want- but trusting the government with my medical needs and giving them that kind of authority over my health or my children’s health, at this time.. NO THANK YOU! Not when more info is coming out daily that is stomping out the propagated fear…..

        • JohnL says:

          Agree with you ADKr. Too much misinformation has been spread and touted as the truth and found to be false later on. Mask. Don’t mask. Vaccine works. Vaccine doesn’t work, just gives reduced hospitilization risk. Etc Etc. Personally, I did get the original vaccination but I’m not getting the ‘booster’ any time soon. Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, etc etc. I’m going to wait until I’m sure they got it right, or, if that never happens (likely), then I’ll just live my life and be comfortable with the reduced risk of hospitilization that the original vaccine supposedly gives me. Life’s a risk and everyone should be free to follow their own health protocols. If you want to wear a mask all day every day, have at it. Stay at home? Be my guest. I’m gonna try to enjoy the years I have left and not worry myself sick about things with this low a probability of hurting me.

        • Richard Monroe says:

          I hear everything you are saying. You make some very valid points. Though I may not completely agree with your final analysis, I won’t attempt to debate you on any of it, I’ll simply finish with this:
          I get my flu shot every year, without politics, knowing that flu strains mutate, sometimes more than once in a flu season. I get my flu shot knowing that I still may get the flu, but ALSO knowing that, if I do, my symptoms are likely to be far milder & I am far more likely to avoid hospitalization, severe consequence, or death. The same for my family. So, in the end, for my own, & my family’s personal medical decision-making process, I block out the politics and ask myself this: Am I (are we) less likely to get as sick if I get vaccinated? Am I less likely to get sick if those around me are vaccinated? For me, the answer is “yes.” If, by some gimmick or gadget, the powers that be are able to convince others with whom I may well come into contact, to, for whatever reason or motivation, reach the same answer, then, notwithstanding or arguing your points- in my own final analysis, we are all better off. I applaud innovative incentives & efforts, and it’s well worth the cost. I realize I won’t change your mind or perspective. I’m not trying to. I’m simply sharing my own.

          • ADKresident says:

            Richard, I sincerely respect and appreciate your choice and perspective. Everyone operates in their own level of medical understanding and what they believe is best for their own health. I, for one, have never received a flu shot and have practiced a more holistic approach to my own immunity for years, in fact, many years before Covid, Yet, many in my family & friends choose differently. I would not impose my lifestyle or diet on others, which works very well for me, anymore than I would expect anyone else to impose their health practices on me. We can all share information and glean from one another’s knowledge, choosing to implement what we think best for ourselves.
            Having said that, we agree on this one thing: Health and well-being is a personal choice and to keep politics out of it. However, lately, the government is imposing what ‘they’ think is best for everyone, claiming to be ‘science’ when the essence of true science actually welcomes to be challenged and/or proven differently. Who has not received a 2nd opinion or even a 3rd opinion from other doctors over the years, only to find the first opinion not only differed, but was not the best option for them? Most people, I am sure!
            I refuse to allow myself to be manipulated or hand over the authority of my own medical choices over to elected officials. And I believe using tax $$ to manipulate the masses into “any” form of medical treatment is an overstep of government. As JohnL stated, “…everyone should be free to follow their own health protocols.” And to me, that is a fundamental right in a free society.

            Anyhow, Thanks for the respectful ‘agree to disagreement’.

            On a side note: I appreciate and enjoy your writings very much so! Keep ’em coming! 🙂

          • JohnL says:

            Good Morning. I got flu shots until 1988 when I contracted Guillian Barre syndrome, probably as a result of that very flu shot. As a result, since then my doctor has advised me NOT to get flu shots. I have followed his advice and haven’t gotten a flu shot since. I have also never gotten the flu. I know, it’s anecdotal, but it points out that 1 treatment/prevention is not necessarily good for all.
            BTW, this vaccine (COVID) is enough different in basic nature from the flu shot that that same doctor advised me to get the COVID shot, which I did. This was my road on the way to my personal COVID decision. Have a great day!

  2. Merry says:

    Don’t you just hate it when the government spends money to save lives!

  3. Andrew says:

    The FEDS can force a tax on folks for not having medical insurance, tax them on their vaccine records. They can use the money raised by the tax to offset the expense of treating COVID. Don’t waste time on a lottery. I can appreciate NYS for trying.

  4. Scott says:

    “Well I was on the fence about getting the vaccine before, but the chance to enter the DEC sweepstakes has convinced me”… said literally no one ever. This is yet another case of the state wasting money. Either refund the taxpayers or do something productive with the thousands of dollars, like hiring another forest ranger or put that money into maintaining the current dilapidated trail network. We’ve been promised a new trail up Cascade Mtn trail for 2-3 years now, where’s the money to finish that?

  5. LeRoy Hogan says:

    I got all 3 shots, no big deal. Just sad did not get one lollipop.

  6. Maggie Jihan says:

    Wow, this is just so idiotic I’m honestly shocked. I don’t need to say much more, because ADK resident and others have already spoken for me (thanks, people). But I will say this– I am among the DEC’s biggest fans, most of the time. I’m now reviewing that sentiment.

    As for those of you who speak of saving lives and “no big deal” to get the shots? Clearly you are maintaining the same willful ignorance of the covid-vaxes’ poor efficacy combined with their high adverse-effect rate (sometimes even lethal effects, not uncommonly long-term ones) that our governments/agencies have adopted. Because in spite of the vigorous attempts to block the information emerging–in part by deriding it as mere quackery and “conspiracy theory embraced only by whack-jobs” (and dear god, facebook, you are NOT my medical advisor!)– there is plenty of information available. And a great deal of that is coming from highly reputable medical and research sources, not hard to find for those with a modicum of will-to-know. Will to have knowledge, that is, instead of merely the ability to pat yourselves on the back for obeying orders and being more community minded in your own opinion than anyone else.

    Sheesh! DEC, I’m really very disappointed in you!

    • Dana says:

      Obviously you have no concept of how immunization works. NO immunization keeps you from contracting a virus. The immunization simply helps your body fight it by giving your immune system a head start. The fewer people walking around with active infections decteases transmissability in a population.

      “High adverse-effect rate” is simply nonsense. How many hundreds of millions of people WORLDWIDE have received the vaccine with no adverse effects other than a sore arm? Stop spreading nonsense that can kill people!

  7. JT says:

    Marcus Lamb, Christian Broadcaster and vaccine skeptic died from Covid. How many other people did he convince not to get vaccinated who will contract and die from Covid, or if they do not die, will live out their lives with Covid complications. Whose the bad guy? Not the NYSDEC or government.

  8. Mike says:

    Since most CDC employees are not vaccinated and many are still working from home the offer from the DEC should be extended to them to help save more lives. In fact, why not offer it nationally? Think of all the lifesaving that will happen.

  9. Mike says:

    Based on several comments on this article(and many other articles) regarding COVID vaccines i’m led to conclude that educational system in the country needs some serious overhauling.

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