FFA to host annual varmint hunt fundraiser

Samantha Estrada, Staff Writer

Teague FFA will be hosting its annual varmint hunt fundraiser on the weekend of Jan. 31. This event allows participants to gain points for hunting local varmints such as hogs, raccoons, and opossums. The first place team will receive four belt buckles and a $1,000 cash prize. The prize for second place is $500. Registration to enter will take place in the ag building.

The entry fee is $200 for a team of 1-4 participants. All proceeds made from the event go towards the FFA organization.

“The money that we raise goes directly to our members,” said senior FFA president Cody Fowler. “Being a student-led organization, we have to raise money to pay for our annual FFA banquet, entries into contests, and the expenses to attend the FFA State Convention.”

This marks the seventh year that FFA hosts the event, which has now become a tradition. The annual event all started with one student, who graduated in 2015.

“Seven years ago a student, Ty McAdams, came to me and had an idea for a fundraiser for FFA,” said ag teacher Amanda Smith. “He hunted in varmint hunts all over the state, and felt like we would have enough community interest to start one.”

The hunt is a community event that welcomes participants from all Texas counties.

“The varmint hunt is one of the biggest fundraisers of the year,” said sophomore FFA member Lanea Bayless. “It is a way to bring the community together to interact with one another and have a good time.”

The event requires all state hunting laws and guidelines to be adhered. This ensures the safety of all the people involved. Local game wardens are invited to weigh-ins. A polygraph is also administered to the winning teams.

“Hunting is a Texas tradition and a part of our heritage,” Smith said. “We are proud that we can encourage responsible hunting for future generations.”