Field Day Saturday May 2, 2020

Save the Date! MSDA’s Annual Field Day — a full day of FUN, bird dog training for all levels, and some very good food — will be Saturday, May 2nd at Rebel Ridge Farms in Elkton, MD. Much more information will be posted in the coming weeks and online registration will open by the end of February.

There will be training groups for flushing, pointing, and retrieving breeds; each of these will be divided further into at least beginning and advanced sections. There also will be opportunities for very experienced handlers to “work on your own”. Whether you are a total beginner or an experienced handler with titled bird dogs, there will be something for you.

And, we will have additional beginner and other educational activities. We want to give everyone the opportunity to stay busy throughout the day. Fees are $10 per handler plus $25 per dog. Guests/observers are free. We also ask that you/your group either bring a potluck dish to share (preferred) or contribute $10 per person toward lunch. MSDA will provide gunners. Birds are included for both introductory and advanced training groups.

Location:

Rebel Ridge Farms is a private property located in northeastern Maryland and has:

  • 250+ acres of specially-managed sporting dog training areas connected by a driveway that runs the length of the property
  • Eight major field areas, up to 1,000 feet long, with low to medium cover
  • Four large ponds
  • Air-conditioned clubhouse
  • Property edged by large trees and dense cover
  • Parking at the fields, ponds, and clubhouse

Many photos and an aerial tour of the property are available on the Rebel Ridge Farms website.

Training Groups:

There will be field and water training opportunities throughout the day.  MSDA will provide gunners. Birds are included for organized training groups.

Organized Training: Work at introductory through advanced levels with experienced trainers, handlers, and gunners. Groups for flushing, pointing and retrieving dogs. Group activities and individual attention for you and your dog(s) based on your training goals for the day. Field Day is set up to be attentive to each dog’s experience and training needs, rather than running all dogs through a standard set of drills. We will keep the groups small so that everyone has plenty of training time. Birds will be provided and are included in the per-dog fee for the day. Much more information will be provided in the coming weeks about specific training activities and goals for the flushing, pointing, and retrieving groups.

Work Entirely On Your Own: Experienced handlers only. All sporting dog breeds. There will be a designated field area and pond for those not needing training assistance or gunning. Peer-to-peer training opportunities within your group, using thrown or planted bumpers and birds. No live fire. Bring your own birds. Work-on-your-own attendees do not pay the per-dog fee.

Other Activities:

In 2019, we offered CGC testing, an introduction to using e-collars for field training, information about safe gunning at field events, and a raffle. We’re still sorting out the details for 2020; suggestions are welcome!

Questions & Comments:

We continue to finalize plans for this year’s Field Day. If you are interested in helping or would like to volunteer on the day of the event, please contact us. Trainers, gunners, and committee members receive free admission and birds for their own dogs’ field work, as well as access to the fields outside of general training hours. Handler fees may be waived for other volunteers.

If you have questions about whether your dog is ready for these activities, how to help, or any other issues, please contact the event coordinator, Pamela DeSmidt.

Much more information will be posted in the coming weeks and online registration will open by the end of February. Meanwhile, see photos, and more, at our pages for 2019 Field Day, 2018 Field Day,  July 2017 Field Day at Rebel Ridge (MD), and June 2017 Field Day at Wilder Wildlife Area (DE).

You do not have to be an MSDA member to participate in Field Day. But, if you are interested, learn more about us,  how to join the club, and sign up for our e-mail list.

View our full calendar  of upcoming and recent activities.

Join the conversation! MSDA has a (private) Facebook group.