February 1, 2024
In the heart of the untamed wilderness, where the rivers run clear and the mountains kiss the sky, there lies a tradition as old as the trails themselves—the National Rendezvous. It’s a time when frontiersmen from all corners of the land gather to celebrate the spirit of adventure, trade their wares, and share tales of the wild. As the first light of dawn creeps over the horizon, Jedediah, a seasoned frontiersman, rises from his humble abode. Today is no ordinary day; it’s the day he prepares for the grandest event that only happens every four years—the National Rendezvous.
With a spring in his step and a twinkle in his eye, he sets about gathering his prized hides and meticulously crafted gear. His trusty rifle, “Ol’ Betsy,” rests against the wooden table, gleaming in the morning sun. Jedediah can hardly contain his excitement as he packs his wagon. He’s looking forward to catching up with old friends, those rugged souls he’s shared many a campfire with. He’s eager to meet new friends, too, folks who’ve heard of his legendary exploits and wish to swap stories.
National Rendezvous is a melting pot of camaraderie. It’s a place where bonds are forged, and friendships are kindled. It’s not all socializing and storytelling; the National Rendezvous is also home to some fierce competition. Jedediah has been honing his skills, ready to take on any challenger in his favorite events. Be it sharpshooting, tomahawk throwing, or a good ol’ fashioned foot race, he’s determined to show he’s still got what it takes to be called a champion.
Those are the only events he wants to earn a championship ribbon for. Jedediah has spent most of the harsh winter preparing his entries for the Craftsmen Fair. With his Bible falling apart from years of wear and tear, he took special care to tan the perfect deer tan, cut the pattern, and create a cover that would protect his Bible for many years to come. He also completed a quillwork band for his hat. He knows these entries earn him additional bragging rights.
Let’s not forget the vittles. The air is rich with the aroma of sizzling meats, hearty stews, and strong coffee. Jedediah’s mouth waters at the thought of the feast to come. He’s been perfecting his own recipe for venison jerky, and he can’t wait to share it with his fellow frontiersmen. National Rendezvous is a celebration of the senses, where the food is as robust and spirited as the people.
As Jedediah sets off towards National Rendezvous, his heart swells with anticipation. The journey ahead is fraught with challenges, but it’s the promise of adventure that fuels his spirit. National Rendezvous isn’t just an event; it’s a testament to the enduring allure of the frontier—a place where legends are born, and the wild heart of freedom beats strong. Here’s to Jedediah and all the brave souls who keep the frontier spirit alive. May your trails be clear, your aim true, and your stories never-ending.
Are you coming to National Rendezvous in July 2024? What are you doing to prepare? Are you excited? Are you sharing the excitement with others? Are you planning to bring Young Bucks to National Rendezvous so they can have a similar experience?
by John Hembree and Sandra Blanchard