Alliance between Tips Outdoors Foundation and School of Outdoor Sports promotes outdoor education

Woodbury, MN– Two nonprofits dedicated to getting newcomers into fishing, hunting, and shooting have teamed up to create a coordinated, national program combining hands-on events with ongoing, online education.

Tips Outdoors Foundation has joined forces with the School of Outdoor Sports to develop this landmark integrated effort.

“We give beginners a chance to experience the outdoor traditions,” said Mark Tipler, Executive Director and Founder of Tips, which conducts fun, hands-on instructional events. “We had been planning to develop ongoing education to strengthen what we do, because beginners need continuing help after an event is over. But the School of Outdoor Sports is already delivering ongoing outdoor education, which makes us perfect partners.”

The School of Outdoor Sports offers high-quality lessons in the basics of fishing, hunting, and shooting, in its online classrooms  ( In addition, the school “encourages people to try whatever sounds fun,” said Mark Strand, President and Founder. “We don’t know ahead of time what any given newcomer is going to like best,” he said. “We teach basic lessons in all of it, and let people choose their own favorites.”

Tips and SOS stay with newcomers “all the way to the finish line,” said Tipler, “meaning the point where they think of themselves as anglers, hunters, shooters, or all three.”

Hands-on, in-the-field experiences are necessary in this process, said Strand.

“We teach beginners how to be successful, in whatever they want to try,” Strand said, “but that’s not enough by itself. We need to get people out there, so they can build their own skills, gain their own experiences, and become attached to the outdoors.”

The two organizations were brought together by Mike Kurre, Hunting and Angling Mentoring Program Coordinator with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. “We can all do more together than we can separately,” said Kurre, “and this partnership is a good day for the future of mentoring, not just in Minnesota, but across the country.”

Coordinated planning between Tips and the School of Outdoor Sports has already begun, after the two organizations signed an agreement, on March 23, to integrate efforts.

“We’re doing more than simply cooperating with each other,” said Strand. “This is set up to make a difference, nationally, in the number of people who become actual, active participants.”

About Tips Outdoors Foundation

Tips Outdoors Foundation conducts fun, hands-on, outdoor educational experiences. In addition, it provides support for, and partners with, other organizations with the same goals and purposes. Tips’ mission is to introduce kids and families to outdoor related activities, helping to build family values. The Foundation also partners with corporate sponsors to produce outdoor sports related special events. The purpose of each special event is to raise funds and awareness by using all types of media, focusing on the cause and mission of each nonprofit organization.

Organizations interested in partnering with Tips Outdoors Foundation may contact Mark Tipler at<>.

About School of Outdoor Sports

Developed to mesh with existing efforts to increase participation in the traditional outdoor sports of fishing, hunting, and shooting, nonprofit School of Outdoor Sports is dedicated to helping beginners of all ages become lifelong participants. SOS carries out its mission by first inviting beginners of all ages to discover these great outdoor traditions. Then, beginners are taught ‘most of what they’ll ever need to know’ in their chosen activities. All student questions are answered individually. Students requesting help finding adult mentors are matched up with mentoring organizations in their area. The result is a steady flow of new, lifelong anglers, hunters, and shooters, eventually reversing the trend of declining participation. For more, go to


Organizations interested in partnering with SOS may contact Mark Strand at


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