President — Gary Helms, 1092 Vanderbilt Rd.,
Texarkana, AR 71854; phone: 870-772-3834;
Vice President — Aaron Hitchcock, 9331 Sister Ln.,
Mulberry, AR 72947; phone: 479-997-8401
Secretary/Treasurer — Karen Davis, 1350 Hwy 70 E, DeQueen, AR 71832; phone: 870-642-3674
NTA Director — Mike Fischer, 13823 Masoner Rd.,
Lonsdale, AR 72087; phone: 501-939-2325
Editor — Bill Fields, 543 Riverbend Rd.,
Mammoth Spring, AR 72554;
phone: 870-625-7457; e-mail: email@example.com
• Individual membership including subscription to The Trapper & Predator Caller — $20
• Family membership with subscription — $25
Complete membership application on first page of
association section and send dues to:
1350 Hwy 70 E, DeQueen, AR 71832
I was pleasantly surprised at this year’s turnout at our annual convention at Petit Jean State Park. Hurricane Ike hit the Texas coast at 2:00 am on Saturday, then headed straight for Arkansas. I figured that fact, along with the price gouging at the gas stations, would keep anyone from showing up. But, never underestimate a trapper! Despite the less than perfect conditions, about 150 people showed up. The rain held off till after lunch, allowing us to get all of the demos and activities taken care of. Most of the people stayed after lunch for the General Membership Meeting and auction that followed.
Our officers are elected for two-year terms, and elections were held at this year’s convention. Yours truly was elected to serve another term as President, as was Aaron Hitchcock as Vice-President. Bill Fields was also chosen to serve another term as Editor. Cindy Bass chose not to run for Secretary/Treasurer this time. She decided six years was enough, and I don’t blame her. It’s a thankless job most of the time, and not everyone is cut out for it. I want to thank Cindy for her hard work and dedication to the job! With that said, I also want to welcome Karen Davis aboard as our new Secretary/Treasurer. Please allow these ladies a bit of time to get all of the paperwork and accounts transferred. If you’ve recently joined the Association and feel as though your Trapper & Predator caller subscription hasn’t kicked in yet, please check with Karen to make sure it didn’t get lost in the shuffle.
For those of you that may not know Karen, she’s married to Randy Davis, one of our Directors. Randy and Karen were the recipients of the Mr. & Mrs. Trapper award at this year’s convention. Jill Easton was awarded Trapper Of The Year. Jill is only the second woman to win the award. Congratulations to this year’s award winners!
Terry Funderburk is our newest Director-At-Large, replacing Bobby Dean Huskey. Don Wilcox and Dub Shankle held on to their positions as Directors. The next Director’s meeting will be at the Fur Sale in January. Speaking of the Fur Sale, I was notified that all activities at the National Guard Armory in Russellville have been canceled through April, 2009. I understand we have many troops returning home from Iraq in the coming months, and many more gearing up and heading to Afghanistan. For that reason, we’re moving our Fur Sale to the
Fairgrounds in Russellville on January 31, 2009. I’ll have more Fur Sale info here for you as we get closer to the date.
They won’t give me enough room here to recognize everyone who made this year’s convention a success, but there are a few I have to personally thank. I want to thank Tim Rainey for negotiating a deal for the Association with his butcher on the hams we had for lunch on Saturday, and to his dear, sweet wife Rhonda, for cooking all of them. They were delicious! If you were able to join us on Friday evening, we cooked burgers and hot dogs for everyone. I’d like to thank Robert Stone for generously donating all of the hamburger meat for our cookout. Thank you to the demonstrators for sharing your knowledge and secrets with us, the vendors that showed up with supplies for our upcoming season, and a big Thank You to everyone who stayed and helped us clean up the building after the auction. That’s the fastest we’ve ever gotten it cleaned! (I hope that same spirit carries over to the Fur Sale)! I also hope everyone was able to dodge the storms and made it home safely.
For all the latest Association news, check out our Web site at the address above. Mark Alexander is doing a great job of keeping it updated. If you can’t find what you need there, I’m always just a phone call away. Until next time! — Gary Helms
Today is September 18 and once again the temperature is down in the mid forties. That has been the case for the last three nights and it certainly feels great. For a few short weeks in the fall, and also in the spring, we have near perfect weather. I really enjoy my early morning coffee while sitting out in the yard in a lawn chair, planning my day. I feel that this is what retirement is all about and I plan on enjoying it as much as possible.
We had our annual Fall Convention this past weekend and I am sure that it was a fun time for all those who attended. There were not as many there as some of the Conventions in the past but with fuel prices such as they are, more were there than I expected. Getting to shake hands and to greet and talk to old friends makes us all the happier and with the economy and gas prices in such sad shape, we need all the happiness that we can get.
On Friday night we had a cookout with burgers and hot dogs with all the trimmings. Afterwards, we had our Directors meeting while the rest of the crowd enjoyed some music provided by a few members who brought instruments. Robert Stone provided 25 pounds of hamburger meat from home grown beef and the association provided the rest for the night’s cookout. It sprinkled on us just a little, but not enough to dampen spirits.
You could sure tell that the past season was on the upswing by the amount of vendors that showed up at our Convention. The amount more than doubled over the previous year. A lot of transactions were taking place. Anything needed for trapping could be found there. It certainly looked like the fur industry was booming. Of course, after living through the last fur boom, we learned that change can come about almost over night. Lets hope that it doesn’t for a few years anyway.
The winners of the donation raffle that was sponsored by The White River Toe Pinchers were as follows: Grand prize of 1 doz.-MB 750—Jon D Clark
2nd-Place-1Doz. 280 Dukes—Wimp Crouch. 3rd Place –1Doz. 1.65 Bridger—Benny Clark. 4th—Place-6. 1oz Bottles Carmen Lure—Robert Stone. 5th Place—4. 1oz Bottles of Carmen Lure—Mike Fischer. 6th — Place—3. 1oz Bottles Carmen Lure—Tom Nupp. All proceeds from the sale of tickets went to the association.
TRAPPER OF THE YEAR AWARD–This award went to Jill Easton and I think that it is well deserved. Jill gets out there and brings in them critters, specializing on Grey Fox. She is always ready to do her share at all of our functions. Congratulations to you Jill.
MR. AND MRS. TRAPPER OF THE YEAR AWARD—This award went to Randy and Karen Davis. Another well deserved award; this couple is always doing more than their share, and are really a great asset to our Association. They help without being asked. Congratulations to you Randy and Karen.
Cindy Bass has stepped down from being our Secretary/Treasurer. I for one really hate to see her go because she has done an outstanding job. This position is indeed a headache and mostly a thankless job and I am sure that Cindy feels that she has had enough. It takes up a lot of time and bookkeeping skills are needed to keep track of things. Cindy, I am sure I can speak for everyone; “thank you” so very much.
Karen Davis was nominated by the Association to fill the slot of Sec/Treasurer that Cindy has vacated. Let’s all give Karen our support and help all that we can in this transaction.
At this time it looks like the fur sale will be held at the Fair Grounds in Russellville. With the troop withdrawal from Iraq and buildup in Afghanistan, The National Guard Armory remains off limits to us from Nov. 1 through Feb. If there is a change, they are supposed to let us know. All for now. — Bill Fields
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