Because you want to use cooking and tasting events to recruit people as eventual participants in hunting and fishing training programs, it is critical to measure their interest and have a list of intermediate “next steps” developed and available.
A simple screening questionnaire is recommended to determine participant interest in participating in other events. Potential questions to ask include their current participation in hunting and fishing, and their interest in attending a variety of other events. Its a good idea to include a list of both general and specific eventss strategy will yield a larger return rate, especially from those who are interested. A quick follow up email to those expressing interest, even if the event is several weeks or months away, will strengthen the relationship with the prospective recruit. Collecting business cards is recommended even if attendees pre-registered. Using the business cards to draw a few door prizes helps incentivize people to give their cards.
Having an agency representative present a brief talk about the species on the menu, how it is sustainably managed, and where it was locally harvested as part of the evening festivities is also recommended.
Not everyone will be ready to jump directly into a hunting or fishing class, after having attended one fish/game dinner. Having other, related activities such as a cooking class, a brief “Introduction to” class, or a foraging class is important to continue the relationship with the prospective hunter/angler until they are ready.
It is also important to remember that the people you are trying to recruit are likely going to be different from traditional hunting and fishing participants. Their motivations for acquiring wholesome/organic food in a sustainable manner are also likely different from traditional hunting and fishing participants. See “Understanding Food Motivated New Hunters” for additional information.