For us newbies. How about a little bio on the forums. I ran across them about the first of this year 05 off the GON main page.
Since then every morning as I try to awake I scan the forums. Java and GON forums.
Although Woody remembers much better than me...or most of us......
Many of us were members of a GON forum back in the infancy of forums. That forum went by the wayside and a fine upstanding fella by the name of Woody Coffee (who also happens top be one of the finest taxidermist on the planet) said "How can we keep outdoors folks together in one place and do a little advertising for my business at the same time?"
That was in early 2001...and the forums called Woody's Campfire opened it's doors in April 01.
We have been through some absolutely wonderful times and a few not so wonderful times in the last 3.5 years.
The fire has helped more people than most of us can ever imagine. Anything from just picking up a new place to hunt, buying a new bandsaw, raising money for a young cancer survivor, gatherings a couple of times a year or best of all picking up new and lasting friendships that will not go away. Many of our members have entire hunting, fishing, shooting, or archery clubs who belong to the campfire and use this format as a way of keeping up with each other.
Some of the bad times was problems with our growth and our old host. A few times over the years we crashed and lost everything we had in archives and all members lost all posts!
The toughest of times came back in late summer of 04 when we find out that our old webhost has decided to not do business any longer which was going to increase our monthly costs by many many times. So Woody, Jeff Young and myself started talking about closing the doors although it would be a tough decision and none of us wanted to do it.
Then Steve Burch and GON came to the rescue. They had decided to re-launch a free forum from their website and heard about our troubles. They offered to help us keep what we have by footing the bill for the host. We all sat down and worked out a few basic details and away we went! The timing could not have been better.
And here we are today.
Without the insight and graciousness of Woody Coffee we would not be here...period. Without GON coming to our rescue late last year we would not be here today...period.
Woody mounted my first good 8-pt., a muzzleloader kill from Blue Ridge wma. He also did a nice wooden plaque mount on a 4 by 4 mulie from Buffalo Wyoming. He was a real friendly guy who made a young me feel good about myself. There were many bigger bucks in his shop when I dropped off my 8-pt. but he made me feel as if killing mine with a patched round ball vs. modern rifle was a big deal. He mounted several elk for friends of mine and did a great job.