436 New Yorkers Entered Drawing After Receiving First COVID-19 Vaccine Dose in December 2021

Grand Prizes Include Lifetime Freshwater Fishing and Hunting Licenses and Deluxe Equipment Packages

All Entrants Receive Tree Seedling, Gift Card, and One-Year Subscription to ‘Conservationist’ Magazine  

Governor Kathy Hochul today announced the winners of the ‘Take Your Shot for an Outdoor Adventure’ sweepstakes. Launched late last year, the COVID-19 vaccine incentive sweepstakes helped bolster vaccination rates among New Yorkers who enjoy the great outdoors with prize packages tailored to anglers, hunters, and other outdoor enthusiasts. A total of 436 New Yorkers participated in the sweepstakes.  

“New Yorkers who have gotten vaccinated to protect themselves and others during the COVID-19 pandemic should be very proud of our progress,” Governor Hochul said. “Adding hundreds of people to our already impressive percentage of vaccinated individuals is a win for the entire state and these fantastic prizes to the lucky winners is an added bonus. The vaccine is our best weapon to fight this pandemic, and the more New Yorkers who get vaccinated, the faster we can continue our path to recovery.”

State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos said, “Governor Kathy Hochul is laser-focused on addressing the COVID-19 pandemic and protecting the health of our communities. DEC was proud to do our part to encourage people to get vaccinated with our ‘Take Your Shot for an Outdoor Adventure’ sweepstakes, designed specifically to appeal to everyone who loves the outdoors. With more vaccinated adventurers, we look forward to seeing more visitors returning to New York’s natural resources year after year.”

Grand prize winners of the deluxe packages chose from packages valued at approximately $2,000. Grand prize winners are:

  • Laura M. of Genesee County selected the Freshwater Fishing Prize Package, which includes a lifetime freshwater fishing license, fishing kayak, vest, rod and reel;  
  • Robert T. of Chemung County chose the Bowhunter Prize Package, including a lifetime hunting and bowhunting license, high-quality crossbow package or compound bow package with ½ dozen bolts or arrows, ladder tree stand, safety harness/fall arrest system, and 10×42 binoculars;
  • Ryan W. of Onondaga County selected the Turkey Hunter Prize Package, which includes a lifetime sportsman license, high-quality ground blind, turkey hunting vest, hen decoy pair, shotgun optical sight, slate call, and 10×42 binoculars; and
  • Graydon B. of Ontario County, and Paul T. of Dutchess County, both selected the Rifle Hunter Prize Package. Each will receive a lifetime sportsman license, high-quality riflescope, ladder tree stand, safety harness/fall arrest system, and 10×42 binoculars.

Twenty-five entrants will receive their choice of Second Tier prizes valued at approximately $1,000, including:

  • Fishing: Annual freshwater fishing license, fishing kayak, vest, rod and reel;
  • Bowhunter: Annual hunter and bowhunting license, high-quality crossbow OR compound bow package with ½ dozen bolts or arrows, a ladder tree stand, a safety harness/fall arrest system, and 8×42 binoculars;
  • Riflehunter: Annual hunting license, high-quality riflescope, a ladder tree stand, a safety harness/fall arrest system, and 8×42 binoculars;
  • Turkey hunter: Annual hunting license and turkey permit, high quality ground blind, turkey hunting vest, hen decoy, slate call, and 8×42 binoculars; and
  • Birder: 8×42 binoculars, birdfeeder, bird seed and I Bird NY materials.

All entrants will receive a tree seedling from DEC’s Colonel William F. Fox Memorial Tree Nursery in Saratoga and their choice of either a $25 gift card for a free night of camping at a DEC campground or a $25 gift card to a major sporting goods retailer. In addition, entrants will receive a one-year subscription to DEC’s Conservationist magazine, which is currently celebrating its 75th year in publication. 

Prior to fulfillment of a hunting license and any associated privilege (e.g., bowhunting privilege), the recipient must complete a hunter education course and bowhunter education course (in the case of the bowhunter prize package) and present the certificate(s) of completion. All eligible, vaccinated entrants must adhere to applicable requirements to receive a hunting or freshwater fishing license in New York State, including completion of required hunter education courses and other rules. For more information about hunting and freshwater fishing licenses, visit https://www.dec.ny.gov/permits/6094.html and https://www.dec.ny.gov/permits/6091.html.

Vaccine Availability

All individuals five years of age and older who reside in the United States are eligible to receive the vaccine. New Yorkers should continue to wear a mask where appropriate and follow all other health guidelines. FDA fact sheets for recipients and caregivers on each vaccine are available: Pfizer-BioNTech/CominartyModernaJohnson & Johnson.

COVID vaccines are widely available at pharmacies, local health departments, clinics, Federally Qualified Health Centers and other locations across the state. Visit Vaccines.gov to find appointments near you or contact your local pharmacy or provider.

To schedule an appointment directly at a New York State-run site, go to New York State’s vaccine scheduler and follow the instructions. Walk-in appointments are also accepted at New York State mass vaccination sites for all eligible individuals.