By Hookemharry

Posted: July 2, 2001

Captain Catchin shows the E.B. Craney Award, which was presented to the Montana Outdoor Radio Show by the Montana Broadcasters Association as the 2001 Radio Program of the Year.

(The Montana Outdoor Radio Show was named the “2001 Montana Radio Program of the Year” by the Montana Broadcasters Association at its state convention on June 21. Here’s an excerpt from Mark Ward’s column from the June 28 issue of the Missoulian. Take it to heart. It was written just for you.)

LET’S HEAR A CHEER for the hunters and fishermen of Montana. They’re really what this is all about.

Last Thursday, at the annual Montana Broadcasters Association annual convention, the Montana Outdoor Radio Show was named “2001 Montana Radio Program of the Year.”

The recognition of the program by broadcasting peers is a credit to the sportsmen and women across the state that listen to the two-hour statewide radio show that broadcasts out of Missoula every Saturday morning.

Personally, as the host of the show under the nickname of Captain Catchin, I was humbled and pleasantly surprised. But most of all, I was happy that the other folks who put this show together who got the recognition they deserved and that hunters and fishermen were finally recognized for the interest they show in the media of this state.

Three years ago, my wife Dawn thought there was a need for a show like this one. With over 250,000 resident conservation licenses sold annually in Montana, she felt we could fill a niche that was being addressed well in the print media by newspapers around the state with their outdoor pages — but not by the broadcast media, especially radio.

But before we could launch the show, we needed to put together a crew to pull it off. In Missoula, we tapped the considerable radio talents of Gary Pearson, Elza Ostrom, Wayne Knudson, Vince Pernicano, Tom Breza and Denny Bedard.

From Hamilton to Havre and Circle to Whitefish, we lined up a network of correspondents to provide fishing reports in the summer and hunting reports in the fall. To make sure we had eastern Montana well covered, we sought the help of Mark Henckel, the outdoor editor of the Billings Gazette, to join the crew and call in each week.

From the start, the show was met with enthusiasm from our 14 radio stations across the state, our show sponsors, Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks and, of course, the Montana sportsmen and women who listen to the show — the people in this who are most important of all. –Captain Catchin

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