Veterans to visit Sunnyhill Restoration Area for Operation Outdoor Freedom deer hunt

Sunnyhill restoration area
Sunnyhill restoration area

The district’s Sunnyhill Restoration Area north tract will temporarily close to host a very special deer hunt.

PALATKA, Fla., Nov.1, 2019 — The St. Johns River Water Management District’s Sunnyhill Restoration Area will host wounded veterans in an Operation Outdoor Freedom guided deer hunt Nov. 5–7. A portion of the property, located in Marion County, will close for the event.

“We are proud to again host our veterans for this unique experience,” said St. Johns River Water Management District Executive Director Dr. Ann Shortelle. “We are grateful for their service and appreciate the opportunity to work with Operation Outdoor Freedom to help create extraordinary opportunities for recreation and rehabilitation for our disabled veterans.”

To accommodate the special event, the Sunnyhill Restoration Area north tract will close to all public recreational activities beginning Nov. 4 and will reopen Nov. 7 at noon. The 3,400-acre southern tract of the property will remain open to the public during this time.

A program of the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Affairs since 2009, Operation Outdoor Freedom has provided 4,100 wounded veterans with recreational and rehabilitative opportunities on state forests, agricultural lands and private lands throughout Florida at no cost. The district is hosting the Sunnyhill event in partnership with the Florida Forest Service and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

The 7,748-acre Sunnyhill Restoration Area stretches along nine miles of the Ocklawaha River in Marion County. More information about the Sunnyhill Restoration Area is available online at