“Wild Women Armed for Fight against MS”
Karen Butler, National MS Society, Connecticut Chapter
August 27, 2010
COLEBROOK, Connecticut – Women Gone Wild is back by popular demand
and participants are armed and ready for the fight against MS, literally. On Sunday –
September 26, women will learn outdoor activities, such as riflery, archery and trap
The event, located at the Northwestern Connecticut Sportsmen’s Association
(NWCSA) in Colebrook, is to introduce women and daughters to our local wildlife
management and conservation efforts through a day filled with fun and informative
hands on activities. Some of the other 11 courses being held are: fly fishing, spin
casting, self defense, wet land ecology, excavation, as well as other activities – all
offered by certified instructors. MaryAnn Orzell, who participated in 2008 and 2009,
said she had not been to the range in 35 years, but that practicing riflery was her favorite
activity at the event. “It was awesome,” said Orzell, who has MS and attended Women
Gone Wild with her two daughters. “It was awesome. It was very educational and we had
In addition to the courses, participants will receive lunch, event t-shirt and a chance
to win prizes in a raffle following the lessons. Proceeds benefit the National Multiple
Sclerosis Society, Connecticut Chapter and the more than 6,000 Connecticut residents
who live with the potentially devastating effects of MS. Last year the event attracted
more than 100 women, who helped to raise almost $3,500.
Women Gone Wild is the highlight of my year,” Jennifer Zordan, the event’s
organizer said. “Many women say they didn’t expect to have so much fun. They really
learn a lot about themselves, which is amazing to me.” The registration fee is $75 and
there is a $140 mother and daughter special.
As an NRA-licensed pistol safety instructor, Zordan said the women who shoot
trap for the first time are very surprised at how exhilarating it is. Zordan, of Torrington,
was diagnosed with MS in 2000 — six weeks before her wedding. As someone
who has always loved the outdoors, Zordan began Women Gone Wild to share her
passion with others who are affected by MS, and to promote an appreciation of nature.
“She wanted to expose women to the sports she enjoys so much,” said Orzell, a resident
Multiple sclerosis can restrict movement. It is a chronic and often disabling disease
of the central nervous system. There currently is no cure. Symptoms can include, among
other things, numbness in the limbs, difficulties with vision and speech, stiffness and, in
some more severe cases, total paralysis. The progress, severity and specific symptoms
of MS in any one person cannot be predicted. Since it began tfour years ago, the event
has grown from outdoor activities to include courses such as self defense and first aid.
“It turned into a ‘girls can do anything’ theme,” she said.
This year Zordan hopes to add two new activities to the program: pest control and
excavation. Orzell said she wants to learn how to fire pistols this April and her daughters
want to continue to practice archery. The event is also an opportunity to showcase local
businesses. Last year several women who enjoyed the self defense course later enrolled at
the Karate school that hosted the activity.
“It’s good for everyone; it’s a win-win,” Zordan said.
Women Gone Wild, hosted by NWCSA, will take place on Sunday, September 26, in
Colebrook. The registration fee is $$75 and each participant will receive four 90-minute
classes of her choice and lunch. Proceeds will benefit the Connecticut Chapter.
For more information about the event please contact Jennifer Zordan at
860-309-9774, e-mail her at email@example.com or visit the website,
www.NortheastWildWomen.com. For information about MS visit www.ctfightsms.org.