For Immediate Release
May 30, 2023
BISMARCK, NORTH DAKOTA — If you want to make a duck decoy, find a block of wood and cut away everything that doesn’t look like a duck. Ok, so it’s not quite that simple.
But making a decoy doesn’t have to be incredibly difficult, either. The easy solution to get started is to attend the 2023 Delta Waterfowl Duck Hunters Expo set for July 28 to 30 at the Statehouse Convention Center in Little Rock, Arkansas.
Delta Waterfowl has arranged a special booth at the Expo staffed by expert decoy carvers Pat Gregory and Rick Pierce, who will conduct interactive demonstrations, share tips and techniques, and answer questions all weekend long.
“I’ll have some white cedar bodies and white pine heads there with me, and I’ll be carving some Delta Marsh canvasbacks and a few other species,” Gregory said. “I’ll also be painting decoys, too, so people can see the technique that goes into actual gunning decoys. We’ll have chairs so people can get in close and watch and ask questions as we go—both about the techniques and about the history. What I do isn’t really that difficult or technical, so I hope at least a couple of folks will leave thinking ‘I could do this myself’ and will go give it a try.”
Gregory, of Bloomington, Illinois, has been making decoys since 1984, and produces more than 100 birds annually. He has carved almost every species of duck and goose found in North America, and fashions his birds from white pine, white cedar, and cork. He has twice been selected as a Master Carver by the Ward Foundation Museum of Collectible Decoys and was the featured carver at the 2018 North American Vintage Decoy & Sporting Collectibles Show.
Pierce, a northern Illinois native who lives in Alexander, Arkansas, started carving decoys in the 1990s. His carving style tends toward classic gunning decoys with clean body lines and varied head positions to convey movement and animation. His decoys are typically made from hollowed white cedar, with cedar or basswood heads and painted in oils.
Pierce demonstrated at the 2022 Expo, and he plans to bring his decoy carving bench back to the event for hands-on learning.
“Delta’s Expo is such a great mix of everything ducks and duck hunting, from traditional to modern,” Pierce said. “It’s an honor to be asked to demonstrate a uniquely American art form alongside another talented carver like Pat Gregory. And being able to do so in my home state of Arkansas is icing on the cake.”
The decoy carving booth is just one among hundreds of exhibits attendees will discover filling the 80,000-square-foot exhibit hall floor of The Duck Hunters Expo presented by Federal Premium Ammunition. The Expo’s many attractions include the Duck Dog Stage presented by Eukanuba and Lucky Duck, the Duck Hunters Stage presented by Benelli, and the Delta Waterfowl Stage presented by BOSS Shotshells and First Lite. In addition, the Expo features a Duck Dog Parade, Callmakers Championship, the World Championship Cutdown Duck Calling Contest, and the Duck Hunters Grand Banquet.
For more information and to purchase tickets, visit deltawaterfowlexpo.com.
Delta Waterfowl is The Duck Hunters Organization, a leading conservation group working to produce ducks and secure the future of waterfowl hunting in North America. Visit deltawaterfowl.org.
For more information, contact Brad Heidel at (651) 403-1772 or firstname.lastname@example.org.