Northeast Ohio's only 24/7 game check station will go dark after December 5, the last day of the state's seven-day firearms deer-hunting season.
Giles Marathon, located on Rt. 306 in Willoughby, will transition itself into a Speedway, the work starting Dec. 6.
Thus, says officials with the Ohio Division of Wildlife, the station will no longer serve hunters as a game check station.
A Wildlife Division official said also she does not believe a replacement game check station for Lake County is in the works.
Lake County's current two other game check stations are Gander Mountain's Mentor store on Diamond Centre Drive, and Great Lakes Outdoors Supply on Route 20, Madison Township.
Of the state's 484 or so game check stations listed in the Wildlife Division's 2010/2011 hunting-trapping regulation digest, only around 13 are open 24/7. Make that "12" with the impending loss of Giles Marathon.
However, all of this old-style way of registering a deer or turkey kill will end next year. It will begin with Ohio's spring wild turkey-hunting season and go through the deer-hunting season.
The Wildlife Division is now trying to work out the bugs on an Internet/telephone-based license-issuing and game check program. This new system will allow hunters to record for themselves their deer or turkey kills by using a computer or a telephone.
- Jeffrey L. Frischkorn