Our Mission:
To create an event providing hunting opportunity and youth education in the great Kansas Outdoors.  To provide opportunity to hunt for those who may not otherwise get the chance...passing on the hunting heritage while showcasing the resources Kansas and Butler County has to offer.

Brief History - How to Participate

In 1987, former Governor Mike Hayden, and former Executive Vice President of the            El Dorado Chamber of Commerce, Marv McCown, along with other key community members, founded this event with the concept of inviting key people from different professions as celebrities to hunt the wild turkey.  By inviting these people to the El Dorado, Kansas area, they become aware of the business opportunities available to them and realize the great outdoor resources Kansas has to offer. All of this while keeping the wild turkey, passing on the hunting heritage to the youth and conservation to the forefront.  This event has brought hunters from all over the world, including many who have close ties to Kansas.  Several years ago, the Hunt added the KANSAS Youth Program to select six youth from the State of Kansas to hunt in the Kansas Governor's One Shot Turkey Hunt.  This program has grown and has become one of the main areas of focus for the hunt.  Teaching and mentoring youth, passing on the hunting heritage for the future of conservation.  Keeping to the mission of the hunt, providing opportunities for youth across the nation and working closely with the National Wild Turkey Federation on the National JAKE Essay Contest.

Participation as a celebrity is by invitation only.  Past shooters may attend, on a first come first served basis, only if they become a member of the Past Shooters & Guides Association.  Invitations are sent out from the Kansas Governor's One Shot Turkey Hunt office and decisions on who is invited is done by a process of the staff.

Events are scheduled around 2 days of great turkey hunting!

How Does It Work?

This is an "invitation only" event for approximately 12-15 new shooters each year.  These invitations are made up of CEO's, Presidents, entertainment, sports, wildlife enthusiasts,  youth as well as artists. There are approximately 50-60 prospects which to select from.  Many come from recommendations by the current Governor, by shooters and by volunteers. These recommendations must come in the form of biographical information submitted to the Turkey Hunt office.  Not everyone recommended gets an invitation.  Those who are invited to hunt must have a hunter's safety number if born after July 1957.

For information on hunting regulations visit the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks through the link to the right.

Programs of the Kansas Governor's One Shot Turkey Hunt

Kansas Celebrity Youth Program

The 2015 Application deadline is January 8, 2015. 

As the Kansas Governor's One Shot Turkey Hunt grows each year, our focus remains focus to pass on the hunting heritage to the youth of Kansas.  The KANSAS Youth Program accepts applications from youth, ages 12-18 across the State of Kansas who meet the criteria posed on the application.  Six youth are selected to participate in the hunt, meeting and hunting in the same circles as the Governor of that State of Kansas, entertainers, business people and more from across the nation.

It is the intent of the Turkey Hunt Board of Directors to provide opportunities for those youth who are not always in the position to hunt, to provide mentorship in hunting and the great resources Kansas has to offer.

In 2014, 23 youth applied for the chance to be a youth hunter.

2014 Youth Hunters
Riley Brown, El Dorado, Kansas
Allison DIx, Stockton, Kansas
Joseph Heimann, Hays, Kansas
Avery Lewellen, Wellington,Kansas
Ethan Shaw, Logan, Kansas
Jenna Smithson, Osage City, Kansas

Hunting Heroes Program:
In 2012, The Kansas Governor's One Shot Turkey Hunt launched Hunting Heroes.
The program is designed to promote morale by providing a life enriching opportunity for military, law enforcement, fire fighting and paramedic/rescue individuals with service-related injuries to participate in the Annual Kansas Governor’s Turkey Hunt.

Hunting Heroes is funded by sponsorships and donations. Selected participants will be provided a once in a lifetime opportunity at no cost. Registration fees, guided hunt, accommodations, meals, license/tag, and travel are all included. 

The Board of Directors for the Kansas Governor’s Turkey Hunt shall annually seek applications and/or nominations for three participants in the program.  Applications and/or nominations may be submitted by any legal U.S. resident or entity.  All applications and/or nominations will be reviewed by a selection committee of the Hunt; participants will be selected based upon the selection criteria and eligibility requirements.

JAKES Program: 
Juniors Acquiring Knowledge, Ethics and Sportsmanship
In cooperation and collaboration with the National Wild Turkey Federation in Edgefield, SC, a national essay contest is held each year. To enter, members of the JAKES program of NWTF submit a 500 word essay on a topic determined annually by the NWTF.  The winner of this national contest is given the opportunity to travel to Kansas and be a celebrity in the hunt.  An invitation to the Kansas Governor's One Shot Turkey Hunt is personally given to the JAKE at the NWTF Convention in February.

The JAKES ESSAY winner 2014: Ian Shofner of Weyauwega, Wisconsin

Kansas Governor's One Shot Turkey Hunt
Kansas Governor's One Shot Turkey is now a 501 (c) (3), non profit organization.

Sponsorship for programs are
available as well as corporate sponsorships

Contact the hunt
office for more information
316 321 3835
Programs of the KS Governor's One Shot Turkey Hunt

  • Youth Program
  • JAKES National Essay Contest
  • Hunting Heroes
  • Past Shooters & Guides
  • Guests/Spouse Program
  • Hunters Extravaganza

2011 Essay winner Addy York, 2012 Essay winner Daniel Raikes, 2013 Essay winner Amber Grigsby
Special thanks to these sponsors for the  2014 Youth Program:
Harvey Watt, Jr.
       Koch Industries
Mat Raymond, Jr
David & Sandy Adams
CDH, Inc. - Jeff Harris
       Blackburn Construction
       Adrien and Lois Hansen
       The Trading Station- Mike Schwemmer

Thanks goes to:
for sponsoring the National JAKES Essay Winner
     guide-Brandon Barnes,             Sgt. Jon Blank,                  guide Andy Hall
Cpl. Kenny Kalish
guide-Gary Sherman
   Sgt. Jon Blank
   Sgt. Jon Blank