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BOW Workshop Information

The Becoming an Outdoors Woman (BOW) program is currently offered in 35 states and six Canadian provinces. It is a two-and-a-half-day workshop offered to women to promote interest and ease in the great outdoors. To use BOW’s branding, workshops must follow this two-and-a-half-day format with programming split into roughly equal thirds among fishing, hunting and other outdoor activities. BOW workshops have been around since 1991 - conceived during a conference in 1990 at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point on “Breaking Down Barriers to Participation of Women in Angling and Hunting,”

Illinois BOW

In Illinois, we have 2 main BOW weekends – one in Northern Illinois in June and a Southern Illinois workshop in October. Recently, we have added some “Beyond BOW” opportunities to try more specialized skill development in hunting and trapping. Our workshops typically fill up very quickly, so make sure you check the website often to know when registration will open. Depending on the lodging accommodations, we typically have 70 - 80 participants. Program fee is currently $270. A small number of classes within the weekend require an extra $10-25 fee due to extra off-site fees by vendors.

BOW is designed to cover all costs through registration fees. It is a not-for-profit endeavor, and any proceeds from registration goes toward the scholarship fund. (Women can apply for a scholarship at the time of registration). 

Examples of classes offered at BOW events:

Advanced Wingshooting
Archery I & II
Basic Shotgun
Bee Keeping
Camp Craft
Camping (basic)
Canoeing I & II (river trip)
Cooking (outdoor)
Dutch Oven Cooking
Equestrian Care & Riding
Firearms Cleaning
Firearms Safety
Fishing (basic)
Fly Fishing
Fly Tying
Horseback Riding
Mammal Trapping


Medicinal Plants
Native American Pottery
Native Plants & Landscaping
Nature Crafts
Nature Journaling
Nature Photography
On Pond Fishing
Orienteering I & II
Outdoor Survival
Power Tools
Reading the Woods
Self Defense
Squirrel Hunting
Turkey or Deer Hunting
Upland Bird Hunting
Water Skiing
Wild Edibles
Woodswoman 101
Zip Lining

**The shotgun, handgun, rifle, and muzzleloading classes require participants to have a hunter safety card or take the firearms safety class offered at each BOW event.