OSHKOSH — Despite snow, temperatures in the twenties and high winds, hunters flocked to the great outdoors Saturday as gun deer season opened in Wisconsin.
Jim Sturdivant—like many in the state— grew up with hunting as a family tradition.
“It was something every kid looked forward to back in those days," Sturdivant said. "I started hunting in the early 70s and it was something that, you know, we just did with our fathers. It was a big family event.”
Sturdivant said he's had his share of hunting successes in his life, but the most special were the ones he shared with his late father.
"Well, I’ve had my share of big bucks I guess over the years," he said, "some of my fondest memories were with my dad.”
Saturday was another successful day for Sturdivant, who brought his kill to be processed at Beck's Meat Processing, run by Terry Beck and his sons.
Beck explained that his businesses is one of the few in the area that offer full processing of deer.
“We do full processing, we do beef, pork, lamb, bison, elk and a lot of deer..." he said. "That I’m aware of, as far as licensed processors, there’s only two other ones available [In Northeast Wisconsin].”
Since they are one of a very few options available for processing deer, Beck said his business stays very busy during the hunting season.
"Deer season is definitely the busiest time," he said, "We’ll do, approximately 1,200 to 1,500 deer."
The extra work is good for business, but makes it difficult for Beck to join the hunt himself.
“I haven’t [gone hunting] in the last few years cause we’re usually so busy I don’t go," he said.
The season closes Nov. 27, giving hunters like Beck just one week to enjoy the sport.