Rifle deer hunting season changes for the first time in over half a century

Local News

Rifle season is set to start sooner for deer hunters this year.

After half a century of beginning the harvest the Monday after Thanksgiving, a vote this morning moves the start of the hunt to the Saturday after Thanksgiving instead.

The traditional Monday after Thanksgiving opener started back in 1963. The PA Game Commission votes 5-3 today to slide the date forward by a couple of days.

The reason for advancing the start day is to accommodate shifting hunting demographics and to create more opportunities for hunters to participate in the harvest.

Senator Dan Laughlin says, “We got it moved back to Saturday. It’s going to provide a lot more opportunities for families that have to work and also for college students.”

No word on whether school districts in Pennsylvania will still offer that Monday after Thanksgiving off.

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