If there was one event I had to attend at the SHOT Show, it was SHE Safari’s press conference this morning.
After a gazillion years in the newspaper business, I shouldn’t get excited about a mere press conference. But SHE Safari is one of the very few companies out there making hunting clothing for women. Yes, stuff you can hunt in, not the camo lingerie I’ve passed by in several booths today.
Question No. 1 for Pam and Brian Zaitz (the SHE Safari president and vice president, respectively), was what do you have for duck hunters? How about some women's waders, built for our hips, not men's guts?
It’s a brutal question, because there are only about 131,000 women in the U.S. who hunt migratory waterfowl, according to U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service data. As Brian explained, a company has to be assured a substantial majority of the market to make the venture worthwhile.
But while it doesn't sound like SHE Safari will have waders anytime soon, Brian said the company will have some waterfowling gear in its 2009 collection, which will be designed by May and unveiled at the 2009 SHOT Show.
The Zaitzes already have plenty of nice women’s gear for big game and upland game hunting, and they've doubled the size of their clothing line this year, in part with today's introduction of a line of women’s technical shooting clothing named for Olympic shooter Kim Rhode.
Pam Zaitz models quite a bit of what they sell, and being fabulously gorgeous, it looks great on her. I hope to check out SHE Safari's brush pants - which look well built - to see if they'll fit my somewhat thicker proportions as nicely as they fit Pam. Even if I can't look like she does, it's nice to know I have the option of actually looking like a woman while wearing appropriate gear.
The other great news today was that the company is working on a new program, "She's Outdoors" television, so us huntresses will have one more program on hunting TV with role models instead of lingerie models. Three cheers for that!
The show will feature hunts all over the world, and the excerpts today featured Pam just hammering a variety of game. I didn't see any duck hunting in the preview, but the company does have a waterfowler on its Pro Team - Beth Ann Amico - so there's always hope.
And I know, I know, I need to get over the end of waterfowl season. I just need time.
The SHE Safari Pro Team is a pantheon of hunting goddesses. Left to right, they are Louise Shockey, Jodi Clark, Brenda Potts, Kandi Kisky, Pam Zaitz, Vicki Cianciarulo, Kim Rhode, Irlene Mandrell and Beth Ann Amico.
© Holly A. Heyser 2008