Operation Outdoor Freedom
View the schedule and apply to participate
Outdoor Freedom is an endeavor of the Florida Forest Service that provides recreational opportunities to wounded veterans. Participants must be Florida residents (as defined in s. 379.101(30)(b)) who are honorably discharged military veterans with either a service-connected disability rating of 30% or greater from the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs or be a Purple Heart recipient.
Events can be accessed from the list, calendar, or map below. Click on the name for basic information. You may apply once for each event.
There are two types of Events:
- Guided Events – These events provide complete guide services, housing and all meals. All scouting, equipment, blinds, game processing and any handicapped needs are provided. Mobility assessments are provided for each event.
- Unguided Events – These events only provide the area to be used, primitive campsites and portable restroom facilities. The veteran is responsible for all hunting equipment, tents and food. Some events may provide a meal. All scouting and hunting is the responsibility of the veteran. Each veteran is allowed to bring one non-hunting assistant with them. Assistant may go on the hunt and help but is not allowed to use the weapon.
There are two different processes for applying:
- Participants are selected for many events, both guided and unguided, by a random selection process within the application software. These events will have a link marked “Apply” for online registration. If you are not a registered user, you will be prompted to register with a user name and login before you can apply for the event. After applying for an event, the right hand column of the list below will change from “apply” to “cancel”. Select cancel to remove your name from the event. You may cancel your registration at any time.
- For some guided events, the participant selection is made by a participating veteran’s organization and is distinguished by a “Contact Us” link. Selecting this option will produce a window with contact information. Clicking on the email address within this window will allow you to fill out your information and send it to the contact for that event. To withdraw your application, please contact the respective veteran’s organization contact person.
Participants will be selected to participate in only one event unless there are unfilled slots available at other events for which you have applied. Selected participants will be notified 30 days prior to the event. Event coordinators will provide event details, contact information and answer any questions. You will be asked to provide proof of 30% disability rating or Purple Heart credentials by email within five days of selection notification.
|Event||Location||Begins at||Ends at|
|Blackwater Archery 1 2020||
Blackwater River State Forest
|11/03/20 3:00 PM||11/06/20 12:00 PM||POINT (-86.8021134465333 30.773227717967924)|
|Plank Road State Forest Hunt||Lake Talquin State Forest||11/13/20 2:00 PM||11/15/20 12:00 PM||Apply||POINT (-84.270467342498648 30.242042061011428)|
|Blackwater Archery 2 2020||
Blackwater River State Forest
|11/17/20 3:00 PM||11/20/20 12:00 PM||POINT (-86.801898869812035 30.773316998553693)|
|Withlacoochee Training Center Deer Hunt||Withlacoochee State Forest||11/21/20 10:30 AM||11/21/20 8:00 PM||Apply||POINT (-82.336241694444439 28.655313444444442)|
|Two Mile General Gun Hog Hunt||
Withlacoochee State Forest
Registration not yet open
|02/13/21 10:00 AM||02/13/21 8:00 PM||POINT (-82.389441 28.976411888888887)|