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KDWPT Partners with Kansas Chapter of Backcountry Hunters and Anglers to “Pack It Out”

PRATT – Kansans who care about their public lands can make a difference by volunteering on Saturday, Sept. 26 at 8 a.m. at Cheney and Hillsdale state parks. The events, dubbed Public Lands Packouts, are sponsored by the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism and the Kansas Chapter of Backcountry Hunters and Anglers.

Apart from contributing to the betterment of some of Kansas’ top state parks, participants will also have an opportunity to network with like-minded outdoor recreationalists, raise conservation funds, and possibly join one of nation’s fastest-growing conservation groups dedicated to protecting and promoting public lands.

Kurt Ratzlaff, chairman of Kansas BHA, said Waltons, Inc., of Wichita and SMH Consultants, of Manhattan, have both pledged $5 per bag of refuse gathered at the state park events until the total reaches $5,000 per sponsor. First Lite, a national sponsor, also pledged $5 per bag filled, photographed and disposed of properly by BHA members. As for participants, prizes will also be awarded.

KDWPT staff will assist at both events to answer questions and provide bags for proper disposal, while Kansas BHA board members will be picking up refuse and providing information about their growing organization.

Ratzlaff described BHA as “…the sportsman’s voice for public lands and water,” and said it includes hikers, hunters, backpackers, mountain bikers and anglers. BHA chapters often give organized opposition to matters that threaten public lands and waters. And when needed, they’ll organize events like the Public Lands Packouts.

“Our state parks got used heavily this year. That’s great but it also has brought some issues,” said Ratzlaff. “We’re wanting to get some people out to help clean them up, but also to teach them about public lands and give everybody a chance to meet other great people who also care deeply.”

There are currently BHA chapters in 48 states and several Canadian provinces. For more on this organization, visit the Kansas BHA Facebook page or Questions can be sent to

For more on Kansas state parks and other public lands, visit