The Fernie Rod and Gun Club had their annual fundraiser on Apr. 30. The event saw 900 people in attendance, according to club President, Kevin Marasco.
Marasco, who has been president for eight years, believes that there will be a profit, although the club is still calculating the event totals. The biggest fundraisers were the bucket draws and auctions.
“There were bucket draws that people could choose prizes in which they wanted to try to win,” said Marasco. “[We also] had a couple of dozen silent auctions, 14 live auction packages which included prizes like a ladies ‘Vegas’ purse auction, African hunt, salmon fishing trip, Hawaiian hunt and our famous ‘mystery pack’.”
According to Marasco, the most sought after prize at the fundraiser was a side-by-side all-terrain vehicle, which was won by a Fernie resident.
“The Arctic CatWildcat side by side was the big prize this year – very sought after. The winner was Kory Stephenson from Fernie,” he said.
The money goes toward a number of projects; some are joint projects to help track wildlife, while others are to help wildlife habitats.
“We are currently involved with an Elk Collaring Project in the Elk Valley with the Sparwood Club, as well as working on the Hosmer Creek Culvert project to help fish habitat there. Currently we are looking at Lizard Creek and some rehabilitation this summer and future plans – starting this year is to look at what we can do with Hartley Lake and Hartley Creek,” he said.
Internally, the club would like to expand its youth fishing programs and offer some day courses on the river for youth.
“We don’t charge for any of our youth programs so we would like to build on them as much as possible to get the youth outside [doing activities like] fishing, hunting, hiking, taking pictures, archery, working on projects, understanding the environment and conservation,” he said.