Jump to content
  • GUESTS

    If You  want access  to member only forums on FM, You will need to Sign-in or  Sign-Up now .

    This box will disappear once you are signed in as a member.

Congrats 8point!!!!!!!


PierBridge

Recommended Posts

FMs very own 8point "Kevin" is in the outdoor section of the Star Tribune News paper today "weds". Kevin is an accomplished turkey call maker and has turned his talent into a small business.

Kevin "8point" is entered in the FM Team Turkey contest as a Youth Hunter participant and is member of Team #5.

Congrats Kevin!

On line version!

Star Tribune Article

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Congrats indeed Kevin!! What a great article. Get ready for all the new orders-you're going to be busy!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Nice article indeed. Can't wait to see your picture and story with the bird you called in with your own hand made call teammate.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Passion for the hunt make turkey calling clear

by Doug Smith, Star Tribune

Kevin Croteau is carving a name for himself.

Croteau has a passion for wild turkey hunting. "It's my favorite kind of hunting,'' he said the other day. He became so enamored of the sport that two years ago, he began making friction turkey calls out of exotic woods and other materials -- fancy, polished calls that fellow hunters have noticed and started buying. One he donated to the National Wild Turkey Federation sold recently for $150 at auction. Another was auctioned for $100.

Not bad for a 16-year-old high school kid from Ramsey who only began turkey hunting a few years ago.

"I'm probably one of the youngest call makers in the nation,'' said Croteau, a modest yet self-confident and articulate 11th-grader who is active in 4H and high school track.

And loves hunting and fishing.

He started his small business, Last Strut Custom Calls ("because if they come in, it will be their last strut") in his parents' garage workshop, where he added a lathe, drill press and band saw. He has repaid his parents for the equipment with his earnings.

He makes friction calls -- also called a slate call or pot call because they are essentially a small bowl with a piece of slate, glass, aluminum or other material on top. A hunter scratches the surface with a striker to mimic the sound of a wild turkey. Kevin sells his field-grade wooden calls for $35 to $40. He also makes calls out of Corian, the rock-hard countertop material, which he sells for about $50.

"I like the Corian calls, because they look cool and make a nice sound,'' he said. "But it's really hard to work with, it's so dense. I have to constantly resharpen my tools because it dulls them so quickly.''

He makes the wooden calls the same way, on the lathe, using a variety of wood, including red oak, walnut, osage orange, cherrywood and Brazilian cherry. He also makes the strikers, too, on his lathe.

An outdoors kid

Kevin bow hunts for deer and hunts pheasants and ducks. "And I love fishing,'' he said.

Said his dad, Mike: "He's had a passion for the outdoors ever since I took him fishing to Canada when he was 8.''

He and his dad and relatives went turkey hunting for the first time when Kevin was in seventh grade. "We went to South Dakota,'' Kevin said. He didn't get a bird that year, or the next.

"A couple years later, I got my first one, and I was addicted,'' Kevin said. "It's my favorite kind of hunting, hands down. Hearing that gobbler getting closer and closer as you're calling, and then you see them come out of woods in the clearing, and he's strutting and gobbling his head off. And he comes into your decoys. It's just a thrill.''

He worked on his calling, competed in some contests (finishing second in one) and then decided to try making his own. He met a call maker from Oklahoma on a turkey call website who has given him advice, encouragement -- and more.

"He sent Kevin a huge box of wood and slate and said 'have at it,' '' Mike Croteau said. "He's just a super-nice guy.''

Kevin's first attempts were rough.

"It was trial and error,'' Kevin said. "But it was fun, so I kept trying. I experimented for about a year.''

Now he believes he has perfected his call. He figures he has made about 40, donating some for fundraisers, giving others to family and friends, and selling some.

"He makes a dang nice call,'' his dad said. "I had to wait awhile before I finally got one. I don't really know how he got the seed planted for turkey-call making, but he knows his woods and has a good ear for the sound of a turkey call.''

The calls are relatively simple. There's the 4-inch diameter bowl turned on the lathe and a sound board to help amplify the sound sandwiched between the slate, glass or other surface glued on top.

There are other types -- mouth calls, box calls, push-button calls and wing-bone calls, among them -- but many like the friction calls for a key reason: "They're easy to use,'' Kevin said.

Word is filtering out, and he's been making some sales. The hunter who bid $150 for one of his calls at the Turkey Federation banquet ordered three more calls from him.

"I'm such a perfectionist, if it doesn't sound like a wild turkey, I won't sell it. It's got to be perfect,'' he said.

"I don't do it for the money, I just do it because I love to turkey hunt.''

doug0415main.jpg

10doug0415.jpg

2doug0415.jpg

**************************

Way to go Kevin. Be sure to check out the video at Star Tribune.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Official Fishing Report Team - MN

Nice article Congrats Kevin and best of luck to you in your future call makeing!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Congrats on the story Kevin. Its not easy to break into a market dominated by big companies. That tells me your calls are high quality. Keep up the good work!@!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 'we have more fun' FishingMN Creators

Way to go Kevin! Do good work like that and people notice.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.



  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • smurfy
      Heard that too. Also heard 38 was closed for a but north of rapids due to flooding.    I know the water really came up when I was up last week compared to when I was there in April. 
    • Kettle
      Someone said 4 inches in the past week, more expected this weekend. A few roads, including county roads that are asphalt ended up with sink holes. Lakes are the highest I've ever seen in the 30+ years coming to the area and now living here. Several people lost trees Tues night
    • smurfy
      Dang Kettle  that bites. Great to hear fishing was good though.   How much rain you get up that way?
    • Dash 1
      50 in 6 hours is great. Boat issues really put a damper on a great day though. Hope you get it fixed quickly.  
    • Kettle
      Well boat finally got "fixed" and I picked it up Saturday. Last week worked 96 hrs so Sunday wanted the day to fish alone. Boat ran great out to the spot, 4 miles or so. Fishing was great boated over 50 walleye in about 6 hrs. Caught them lindy rigging, jigging and bobber fishing watching them on the live scope. Kept 6 between 18-20 inches. After using the trolling motor for the entire time fishing, go to fire up the tiller and it bogs down and dies. Another 4 hours running the trolling motor back to the launch. Fortunate it's under warranty. Bummer of a day but fishing was great landed one about 7 lbs too  
    • Dash 1
      Terrible news for that area especially this being such a prime time for tourism. We can only hope for dryer days ahead so they can get back to normal.
    • SkunkedAgain
      For those not in the area, the Lake Vermilion area got anywhere from 5-10" of rain the other day (depending on your source). The lake is rising rapidly affecting docks, shorelines, and cabins. The Littlefork River that runs through Cook overran its banks and flooded the town. It's not expected to crest until at least Saturday, which means things will get worse. Places such as the Comet, the Muni, the library, and many other businesses are flooded. Many roads in the area have been destroyed by flooding as well. There's lots of damage. Below are two quick links.   https://www.northernnewsnow.com/2024/06/20/floodwaters-inundate-city-cook-evacuation-location-open/   https://www.mprnews.org/story/2024/06/20/cleanup-continues-flooding-in-northeast-minnesota-southern-minnesota-rivers-rising
    • delcecchi
      Apparently just the motorized portage.   If you paddle you are good to go.
    • CigarGuy
      The only way I could do it is running parallel to the shoreline on the "L", but with the wake from the boats and my rocky shoreline, the waves just bounce it around too much, even with bumpers tied off. My neighbors dock is recessed off the main channel, I'm going to sweet talk him into letting me dock it there.
    • partyonpine
      They closed the Trout Lake Portage down washed out.
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.