Past GGW Events

40 Below, Upper Edge Delta County, and Keweenaw Young Professionals @ Straight Line Archery and The Marquette Commons on November 12, 2016

On November 12, Young Professionals group members from across the Upper Peninsula met in Marquette for a fun day of archery and delicious wild game. Free archery lessons were provided by Straight Line Archery in Ishpeming and were a huge hit. Participants then met at the Marquette Commons for wild game and fish dishes prepared by Chef Justin Fairbanks from Steinhaus in Marquette. Venison sauerbraten with spatzle, elk tartare, and butter poached walleye were served alongside local Michigan wines and Ore Dock Brewing Company beer.


Huron Pines AmeriCorps @ United Way of Otsego County on August 19, 2016

On August 19, Huron Pines AmeriCorps members took a break from their training day to enjoy wild game and fly casting courtesy of the Gourmet Gone Wild program. Program Manager, Taylor Renton, discussed the program along with life after AmeriCorps while members enjoyed venison rib meat sliders, curried pheasant croissants, and Mediterranean squirrel rice. Fly casting was taught by the Mason-Griffith Founders Chapter of Trout Unlimited.


MSU CANR Graduate Student Organizations @ the Demmer Center on April 13, 2016

On April 13, the Michigan State University College of Natural Resources Graduate Student Organization gathered at the Demmer Center for an evening of archery and great food. Chef Dan Nelson demonstrated his recipe for steelhead chowder, one of the dishes served that evening. Curried squirrel rice and venison rib meat sliders completed the meal.


40 Below and Upper Edge Delta County Young Professionals @ DNR Pocket Park Escanaba and Upper Hand Brewery on November 7, 2015

On November 7, 40 Below Young Professionals and Upper Edge Delta County Young Professionals came together for an all-day Gourmet Gone Wild event. The day began with pellet gun shooting, fly-casting, and archery instruction at the Department of Natural Resources “Pocket Park” in Escanaba. Afterwards the groups gathered at Upper Hand Brewery, which was not even open to the public yet. Chef Justin Fairbanks from Steinhaus Market in Marquette served smoked trout deviled eggs, venison sausage, venison backstrap terrine with brandied cherries, venison meatballs “German style”, in addition to fresh pretzels and house-made mustard.


Detroit Young Professionals @ Milliken State Park August 19, 2015

On August 19, Detroit Young Professionals gathered at the William G. Milliken State Park and Harbor for some great wild game dishes, including, grilled venison loin, Great Lakes fish cakes, and curried pheasant wontons, as well as peach cobbler for dessert. Our dishes were paired with delicious wines from Chateau Grand Traverse. Guests also enjoyed fishing lessons, provided by Metro-West Steelheaders.


Huron Pines AmeriCorps @ Huron Pines August 14, 2015

On August 14, Huron Pines AmeriCorps members gathered at the Huron Pines office in Gaylord, MI, for lunch and fly casting lesson. The delicious lunch of wild game dishes included walleye po’ boy sandwiches, venison taco salad, and curried pheasant wontons, as well as white chocolate cranberry cookies for desert. Fly casting lessons were provided by Trout Unlimited members from Grayling, MI.


Glassen Scholars @ Demmer Center August 12, 2015

On August 12, the Glassen Scholars enjoyed various activities and wild game dishes at the Demmer Center in East Lansing, MI, hosted and provided by Gourmet Gone Wild. The students were given instruction with firearms, archery, and fly casting, while having the opportunity to their hand at each. The wild game dishes included were walleye po’ boy sandwiches, venison taco salad, and curried pheasant wontons, as well as white chocolate cranberry cookies for desert.


Covenant House Michigan @ Firebird Tavern June 25, 2015

On June 25, young professionals from the Metro‐Detroit area joined Gourmet Gone Wild and Covenant House Michigan for an underground dining experience at the Firebird Tavern in Detroit. Gourmet Gone Wild provided Great Lakes fish cakes, honeycrisp wild turkey and goat cheese canapé, venison pasties, bourbon venison kabobs, as well as sumac panna cotta for dessert. In addition, soup and salad was provided by Mudgie’s Deli. For the beverage pairings, Fieldstone Winery provided the recommended wine pairings for the wild game dishes and dessert, and Brew Detroit provided the beer pairings for the wild game dishes. Guests also enjoyed a demonstration from Chef Dan, Detroit area art, live music, and an introduction to Covenant House Michigan’s work with homeless youth.


Women’s Night with Pistol Shooting Basics @ Kent County Conservation League April 23, 2015

On April 23, a group of 28 women joined Gourmet Gone Wild at the Kent County Conservation League to enjoy honey apple and goat cheese canapé, Great Lakes chowder, venison pasties, and as well as cherry and white chocolate cookies. Participants also had the opportunity to learn how to shoot various handguns on the range.


MSU College of Agriculture and Natural Resources Graduate Students @ Natural Resources Building April 8, 2015

On April 8, MSU CANR’s grad student organization gathered in the Polar Bear Room of MSU’s Natural Resources Building. They enjoyed venison rib sandwiches, wild turkey salad with wild ramps and fiddleheads, coleslaw, russet potato chips, fruit salad, and MSU-themed sugar cookies. Chef Dan provided a demonstration on harvesting wild ramps and fiddleheads.


MSU College of Agriculture and Natural Resources and College of Arts and Letters @ HopCat Detroit March 22, 2015

On March 22, MSU CANR and CAL alumni gathered at the newly opened HopCat Detroit. Guests enjoyed bourbon elk kabobs, curried pheasant wontons, great lakes cakes, a wild game sausage and cheese tray, and mint brownies for dessert. All of which were paired with different local Michigan beers. It was a great event to network and learn a bit about eating local, along with a great demonstration by Chef Dan on how to process a pheasant.


MUCC On-the-Ground @ Gratiot-Saginaw State Game Area March 7, 2015

On March 7, MUCC On-the-Ground (OTG) volunteers spent the morning creating rabbit habitat for the Gratiot-Saginaw State Game Area.  After constructing several new rabbit shelters, volunteers enjoyed rabbit sliders, coleslaw, and Michigan-made potato chips.  The volunteers, many of whom are members of Midland High School’s Conservation Club, learned the importance of hunting to the conservation of different species.


Natural Resource Commission and Michigan Travel Commission @ the Michigan Historic Center January 14, 2015

On January 14, the Natural Resource and Michigan Travel Commissions took a step back in time to enjoy a wild game reception at the Michigan Historical Museum.  The setting was perfect for a GGW event as guests socialized amidst paleolithic artifacts and displays of Michigan flora and fauna.  Attendees sampled bourbon venison kabobs, cherry smoked goose and brie, and roasted duck wings paired with some of Michigan’s finest beers and wines. A special thanks to the museum and staff who made the event a success.


AGC of Michigan @ The Outdoor Adventure Center on October 21, 2014

With the help of DNR Adventure Center Staff, event participants had the opportunity to try their hand at archery before sampling Michigan beers and wines paired with Bear Stuffed Mushrooms, Lemon Walleye, and Bourbon Duck Satay appetizers.  Many of the participants were hunting and fishing mentors, which gave them the opportunity to learn techniques for introducing others to hunting and fishing.


Muskegon Green Drinks @ Muskegon Yacht Club on October 13, 2014

On October 13, event participants enjoyed gourmet wild fish and game dishes paired with some of Michigan’s best beer and wine selections. Afterwards, guests were invited to learn how to fly fish.


Marquette Harvest Festival October 11, 2014

GGW sponsored a booth at the Marquette Harvest Festival on Oct. 11. The GGW team spoke to well over 300 people about the GGW Program and the benefits associated with hunting, fishing and conservation. 


40 Below Marquette County YP @ The Marquette Commons October 10, 2014

On October 10th, the Marquette County Young Professionals gathered at the Marquette Commons to sample wild game recipes and watch a cooking demonstration by Chef Dan. Local Michigan beers and wines were paired with Curried Squirrel in Root Vegetable Soup, Roasted Venison Heart with Wild Mustard Cream Sauce, and Bear Stuffed Mushrooms. The following day, attendees learned to cast a fly rod at the Marquette Harvest Festival and more wild game cuisine was sampled.


Port Huron Blue Water Young Professionals Gourmet Gone Wild/Wild-­‐er

The weather couldn’t have been better for our Blue Water Young Professionals event on September 23, 2014. Under a recently constructed pavilion at the North River Road Park, Chef Daniel Nelson served Elk Stuffed Mushrooms, Great Lakes Chowder, Squirrel Quesadillas and Caramel Apple Cheesecake, and showed participants how to prepare and cook the ingredients for the Great Lakes Chowder. During dinner, the crowd learned about the foundation of Gourmet Gone Wild, the benefits of local, healthy, and sustainable wild protein sources, and the roles that hunting and fishing play in conservation. After dinner, guests learned how to cast fly rods. The lessons were a hit -­‐ many people felt comfortable casting into the Black River after their instructions! 


Otsego Tomorrow Young Professionals Gourmet Gone Wild/Wild-er

Over 50 people came to Otsego Lake State Park on August 14, 2014 despite the cold and blustery weather conditions. Chef Dan Nelson demonstrated proper cutting techniques for venison loin, and event attendees gobbled up Korean BBQ Venison Kabobs, Blood Orange Rabbit Wontons, MI Cherry Wild Turkey Lettuce Cups and Paw Paw Panna Cotta with fresh Michigan blueberries for dessert. During dinner, Michigan DNR Wildlife Biologist Mark Monroe discussed elk habitat in the Gaylord area. Event goers learned that hunting is the primary method used to control elk numbers and they gained a better understanding of Michigan’s elk management plan. After dinner, Mark and Donna Copeland from Jay’s Sporting Goods taught participants how to shoot archery – everyone had a blast sending arrows through a variety of 3D targets! On the water’s edge, 46th Circuit Court Judge George Mertz of Gaylord and John Walters of Vanderbilt were representing the Headwaters Chapter of Trout Unlimited, and instructed children and adults alike on techniques as they cast on the banks of scenic Otsego Lake.


Ann Arbor League of Conservation Voters Gourmet Gone Wild/Wild-er

Not only did people of all ages came out for our League of Conservation Voters event at Gallup Park in Ann Arbor on May 21, 2014, but they also showed up in a variety of ways – via car, bicycle, and even a canoe! Event participants sampled Hickory Cider Wild Turkey, Elk a la Forest, and Smoked Coho Salmon Cakes, all paired with local Michigan beer and wine.  Chef Dan revealed how to successfully grill salmon collars. Afterwards, participants were invited to fish along the beautiful Huron River.


Milford Gourmet Gone Wild

We hosted a dinner event for the Associate General Contractors Young Professionals on October 16, 2013. The event was held at Kensington Metropark in Milford and was very well attended. Participants sampled Coho salmon cakes, bear-loganaise, and grilled venison loin. Many were very surprised to find they enjoyed bear, a meat that most don’t think to try. Although several of the members were already avid hunters, others reported newfound interest in conservation and one even pledged to buy a hunting license for the coming season.


Ann Arbor Gourmet Gone Wild-er

The Ann Arbor chapter of Trout Unlimited aided us in hosting a fly fishing workshop in Gallup Park, Ann Arbor on October 9, 2013. Mike Mouradian, president of AATU and 25-year fly fisherman, taught participants the basics of choosing flies, casting, and reeling in fish. Several participants caught bluegill with their newfound skills.


Saginaw Gourmet Gone Wild-er

Attendees of the Saginaw Gourmet Gone Wild event were invited to take part in a beginner’s pheasant hunt on a preserve in Bentley, Michigan on October 5, 2013. This event was hosted with support from the Saginaw Pheasants Forever chapter, who delivered an important conservation message to participants. The hunters learned the basics of hunting behind a dog in the fields and how to clean their birds. Eleven pheasants were harvested in total. The attendees also enjoyed a lunch prepared by Chef Dan, pheasant salad sandwiches.


Port Huron Gourmet Gone Wild

We hosted a Gourmet Gone Wild dinner event for the Blue Water Young Professionals at Kate’s Downtown in Port Huron on October 4, 2013. The event was a hit; the small café was packed to capacity with young professionals. Terry McFadden, a local MDNR Wildlife Biologist, also attended the event and spoke on the importance of supporting hunting, fishing, and conservation in Michigan.

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