Monday, August 30, 2010
Hmong Americans celebrate the birth of a club that's the first of it's kind in the nation. The Hmong Sportsmen Club in Sheboygan aims to promote understanding among hunters and fishermen of all races.
In the opening event of the new club, hunters geared up for the upcoming season Sunday. "All the people here today, they're all passionate about the sport," explains Cher Pao Van, Founder of the Hmong Sportsmen Club. "They're not too much about meat anymore. We're into the sport."
The club aims to help fix misconceptions and to promote understanding and awareness. "We had kind of a misunderstanding between our cultures. We're used to doing things now and the Hmong have their culture," says Lil Pipping, club member.
"Its like, oh there's a law against this? Because where I come from, there isn't. And just having that understanding between the two cultures. There is a rule we have to understand it, and that's what this club is here for," says Addison Lee, club member.
"Most of the communities around here are a traditional white sportsman's clubs so it took a little bit of cultural understanding to get comfortable with that," says Mark Pearce, Department of Natural Resources Warden for Sheboygan County.
After working together for six years, supporters agree there's still a lot left to accomplish, but things are looking up. "I think its great step, a great interaction with the community, a warm reaction by the people that have shown up," adds Pearce.
"This is basically a lifelong dream for the most part. it's a much needed club," says Lee. "It's been long overdue."