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Posted on Fri, Nov 18, 2011 : 4:47 p.m.

Dexter's buck pole total: Local hunters display 38 deer this season

By Lisa Allmendinger

buck pole with deer 004.JPG

Some of the deer hung on the buck pole at Mill Creek Sport Center on the opening day of deer season Tuesday.

Lisa Allmendinger |

A total of 38 bucks were hung from the Mill Creek Sport Center buck pole throughout the traditional event during the first three days of firearm deer season.

“It was about the normal number and there were some beauties,” said Maureen Heikkinen, general manager of the sport center.

In fact, since the weather cooled down after opening day on Tuesday, there were still about a dozen bucks on display until Friday night's raffle drawing.

The deer meat will be processed, then eaten by the hunters, their family and friends.

Heikkinen said some people took their deer down and others have left them there since the weather turned colder, which won't ruin the quality of the meat.

“The first day (of firearm season), we were right on line with previous years, (for the number of deer on the pole)” she said.

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The buck pole was part of a local tour for visiting dignitaries from Japan last year.

Lisa Allmendinger | AnnArbor,com

Since opening day took place on a Tuesday, there tend to be less hunters out in the woods than if the firearm season started later in the week.

Heikkinen said most of the deer came from local hunting spots in the Dexter and Chelsea areas. They belonged to hunters who live not just in those areas, but also from Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti as well as Pleasant Lake.

There were deer on the pole from hunters as young as 10 years old to those in their 60’s and perhaps even older, Heikkinen said, adding that although they check driver’s licenses to claim the deer, they don’t check the birthdates on them.

Mill Creek has been in business just outside downtown Dexter in Scio Township since 1948, and Heikkinen said previously that 2,000-3,000 people stop by to see the bucks during the three days that the pole is up.

In fact, during a visit of Japanese dignitaries to the area last year, one of the stops on the tour was to the buck pole. The deer firearm season runs through Nov. 30. In 2012, opening day will take place on a Thursday, she said, so they expect an even larger number of deer on the buck pole for the three days.

Lisa Allmendinger is a regional reporter for She can be reached at For more Dexter stories, visit our Dexter page.



Tue, Nov 22, 2011 : 9:40 p.m.

Terry Star21......... I am with P.E.T.A. (People Eating Tasty Animals) my bloodbrother is T. Nugent and has something for you!!!! What do you eat? Exactly..........enough said!!!!


Sat, Nov 19, 2011 : 2:13 p.m.

How many articles are needed on this subject?


Sat, Nov 19, 2011 : 12:52 p.m.

You're getting a lot of laughs out of this aren't you Lisa and Keep posting articles on this business. They need the free advertising.


Tue, Nov 22, 2011 : 2:01 p.m.

Apparently interesting enough to bring you here to read it every time.


Sat, Nov 19, 2011 : 2 a.m.

Right in the middle of downtown where they're supposed to be! Actually now that I see the perspective I think that in this day and age the buck pole should probably be moved to someplace a little less visible. Why do you need to have it right in the center of town what is the significance of doing that?


Tue, Nov 22, 2011 : 2 p.m.

@justcurious: Actually, I doubt your sentiments ever factored into the decision - you seem to have an inflated opinion of the "intended targets" and their (mythical) importance. It has been a gathering point for hunters for decades. The sporting goods store (ahem) sponsors it and it has been good for business for some time. It used to be the hunters were of vital importance to the local economy, so perhaps you can see its prominence having real value to people and hunting supporters. The idea that it is some kind of message to people who don't like hunting seems awfully egocentric.


Sat, Nov 19, 2011 : 8:18 p.m.

to prove how bass-akwards Dexter is? I keed...I keed.


Sat, Nov 19, 2011 : 2:08 p.m.

To thumb their nose at people who don't want to see dead animals hung as "trophies" of course.

Elaine F. Owsley

Sat, Nov 19, 2011 : 1:23 p.m.

You must be new to the area. This has been a tradition of decades standing.


Fri, Nov 18, 2011 : 11:51 p.m.

Nothing like letting people know where their food comes from! I love the "Going Green" aspect of hunting.

Terry Star21

Fri, Nov 18, 2011 : 11:40 p.m.

Only seems fair that these defenseless, innocent animals could defend themselves, kill for sport and for their own food. But should they be allowed to hand up these spineless, gutless hunters on a pole - think not.


Sun, Nov 18, 2012 : 3:35 p.m.

Moderator I did not make this comment!


Sat, Nov 17, 2012 : 9:20 p.m.

hey bud im a hunter and if you dont like it thats fine but dont come on here and put up a bunch of crap


Tue, Nov 22, 2011 : 1:55 p.m.

I suppose you live an "animal's died for this" free life? Not if you love football. (sports medicine advanced on the backs of test animals, as did the sport) I doubt animals care if its a bullet or a stun gun to the head that kills them, but I bet they DO care about running free vs never being outside other than to load up a trailer. I find the whole argument somewhat disingenuous.


Sat, Nov 19, 2011 : 1:46 a.m.

Well grass and leaves have no choice when they are devoured by these giant herbivores!! I guess Karma comes to them at the receiving end of a slug or arrow!!

Michigan Man

Fri, Nov 18, 2011 : 10:59 p.m.

Looks like Dexter area has some veteran hunters. Nice photo! Perhaps your editors should have waited until the week of the Michigan v. OSU game and titled the article "Lets Bag some Bucks" - Rich Leach, I think, used this phrase quite often.

Terry Star21

Fri, Nov 18, 2011 : 11:42 p.m.

Big deference though - the osu bucks could defend themselves. These innocent, defenseless bucks can not.