This honor goes to Buckmasters, who is in season 33 with Montgomery, Alabama, born Jackie Bushman as the main presenter.
Bushman told Buckmasters Expo 2019 Friday through Sunday this week at the Montgomery Convention Center. "Just to see how it has changed from the cameras, the hunters and the new hosts, it's amazing where it has come from in 33 years, I'm very, very proud to be a part of it."  Bushman said his inspiration for Buckmasters was Ray Scott, who made bass fishing elite through Bassmasters, the Scott-based organization.
Ray Scott was a good friend and I saw what he did to Bassmasters But bass fishing and stag hunting are two different types of sport, there are a few things you can do while perching that you can not do in deer hunting, and I remember that getting in was the hardest part when it came That's probably why nobody did a whitetail show, and all I wanted to do was pull the hair out of the old cameras ̵
"It's amazing how far the technology has progressed from the beginning," Bushman said Photosensitivity allows us to hunt under conditions we never dreamed before. "
Bushman said he really could not set a time when he knew Buckmasters would be a success and he could stop playing tennis
"I did the consumer shows, tried to sell Buckmasters, and still teach tennis," he said, "when we came to TNN (The Nashville Network), we're from 10,000 or 12,000 Subscribers changed to 80,000, and then it just kept going, it was the biggest catalyst to take us to the next level, and for five years we were the only hunting show in one of the big ones Networks. "
When TNN was sold and the new shoppers did not want any hunting or fishing programs, Buckmasters, a few years after finding a new home network, sought settling in the Outdoor Channel, home of the past 16 years.
The content of the TV program has changed over the years from the hunt for white-tailed whitetails to hunting for a variety of big-game species.
"If it was just white details that put a lot of pressure on us, because you only have X weeks to search for original footage," Bushman said. "We started mixing moose, caribou and bear hunts. But there are still 80-85% whitewash, because that is what most people want to see. If you are on site for 4½ days, try to get 17 minutes and 40 seconds of editorial content to complete a TV show. I always say to everyone that we had a bad week when talking a lot on the show. That's just the nature of the animal. "
Over the years, Bushman has introduced new features to the show, including Officer Rusty, a real wildlife and freshwater conservation officer in Alabama, Rusty Morrow. A puppet character called Shotgun Red has also been added.
"I always wanted to have something for the children," Bushman said. "For 33 years, it's always about the kids and getting the new generation going, I was with Nashville Now with Ralph Emery, we talked about the new season of Buckmasters, and Steve Hall, who was Shotgun Red,
"Steve Hall said to me, 'What you said about hunting and conservation is the coolest thing I've heard about national television.' I told Ralph that without the hunters and fishermen we would not be the rich Wildlife would have that we have today. "
Bushman said anyone who loves to see and experience the wildlife and natural resources of Americans should consider buying a hunting license and / or fishing license, regardless Whether they hunt or fish.
"I tell people I promise to use money for conservation projects," he said.
Shotgun Red quickly became part of the Buckmasters TV show and was an instant hit An action promised one Shotgun Red doll for teenagers who wrote on the show. Demand quickly outstripped supply.
"Children loved Shotgun Red," Bushman said. "I had no idea how big it would get, I had grown-up men who came up to me and said," I never got my Shotgun Red doll. "It's funny how many people touched it."
Soon another celebrity joined the show. The Buckmasters Classic was a major event at Southern Sportsman's Lodge outside of Montgomery, which combined hunting deer with a multitude of celebrities who participated in all kinds of games. Jim Varney, the rubberized comedian of Ernest, came to Buckmasters Classic for a year and asked how he could help to promote outdoor lifestyle.
"We could not use Ernest, so we had to come up with another character. Said the Bushman. "We went to an outdoor shop and Jim tried on hats. He looked like Elmer Fudd in a hat, but then we found an orange hat with earflaps. He put one flap up and one down and looked in the mirror and said, "Bush, that's it." From that day on, he was Bubba. When we put Shotgun Red and Bubba in the middle of it, it was a huge hit. Now I have lost both of my co-hosts. Jim Varney died when he was 50, and Steve Hall died that year.
Bushman said Varney helped him with his presence in front of the camera.
"One day he told me," Bush, you look crazy. "The Bushman said," I said, 'Jim, I'm not I'm scared. "He taught me so much about the camera. He said, "The camera is your best friend. It is not your enemy. If you talk to the camera, it has to be your buddy. "I'm still not great, but I've learned to relax a bit and be more myself."
Bushman is still wondering about the reach of Buckmaster's TV show.
"I'm just a country boy from Montgomery, Alabama doing a hunting show," he said. "You go through an airport, or you go to a beach, or you are in a restaurant, and people come and tell me that they love the show, I never thought so many people would see the show Believe me, the show was not about me, it was about preparing people for the game season, I promise, there are much better stag hunters than I. There are a lot of deer running around laughing about this part Doing a three-year series on just missed deer. "
Bushman said his goal for the show was to project their love of hunting and highlight the positive aspects of nature experience.
" You know, "bird watching is the fastest "Growing sports in the nation," he said, "What people do not know is who finances the conservation efforts so that we have abundant wildlife of all kinds. The hunters finance it. But we want you to hunt and become part of our brotherhood. Part of this is access to hunting land, but nowadays many children live in single-parent homes. If everyone in a hunting club hunted a kid or an adult newbie, that's a pretty simple equation. We have 11 million hunters. If everyone had taken a child who did not have access to it, we would have doubled our number. If we do not, our numbers will continue to decline. "
This weekend, Bushman will hang out at the Buckmasters stand in the convention center with a variety of activities around him. More than 300 exhibitors will have the latest hunting equipment. The Brewster Dollar, the new world record in whitewash, is on display. Hunting stars will be available for autographs as well as the usual indoor archery championship. New this year is the Buckmasters College Fishing Competition.
For more information, visit www.buckmasters.com/resources/expo. The entry fee is a tin can, donated to the Montgomery Area Food Bank.
David Rainer is an award-winning writer who has been reporting on nature in Alabama for 25 years. The former Mobile Press Register editor writes for Outdoor Alabama, the site of the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources in Alabama.