This year marks the 75th Anniversary of the National Ducks Unlimited organization. The upcoming 2012 fundraising banquet for the Palo Alto Sportsman's Chapter of Ducks Unlimited will once again be a large part of the ongoing efforts to preserve and restore wetlands and wildlife conservation. The annual banquet is set for Friday night, Nov. 9, at the VFW in Emmetsburg.
Doors will open at 5 p.m., with a social hour starting at 6 p.m., with the banquet to begin at 7 p.m. and auction to follow. Jim Reding of Emmetsburg will handle this year's auctioneering duties.
Each year, the banquet and auction features several exceptional pieces of artwork, and this year is no exception, as the auction will include the DU 75th Anniversary redhead decoy, as well as the National DU Print of the year, "Night Flight", on canvas by Terry Redlin. Also on the auction block will be the DU Gun-of-the-year, a Browning MAXXUS 12ga. semi auto with 3"chamber, featuring the gold inlaid DU logo and "Ducks Unlimited" inscription.
DUCKS UNLIMITED OFFERINGS – The upcoming Palo Alto Sportsman’s Ducks Unlimited banquet on Nov. 9 will feature these items and many other great offerings as part of the 75th Anniversary of the National Ducks Unlimited organization. Pictured from left to right are committee members Patrick Baily, Andrew Stolley, Colton Christensen, Kevin Christensen, Kyle Christensen, Grant Duhn and Ron Riha, with Brian Garrelts kneeling with the National DU Print of the Year. Tickets are available from any committee member. – Dan Voigt photo.
Also on the auction block this year will be more quality firearms from Remington, Mossberg, Henry, Beretta, and TriStar Sporting Arms. Artworks will include the Iowa State DU Print, "Duck Tails" by McDonald, as well as artworks from noted wildlife artists Zach, Kemp, Crowe, and Hautman.
Other auction items will include incredibly life-like decoys and many more various unique and non-traditional items, such as a DU cutlery set, camouflage gear, knives and even a special DU "plumber's helper" for the "Little Sportsman's Room."
Area businesses have donated many items for raffles and the silent auction and many of the DU merchandise offered during the auction, has been underwritten by donations from local area businesses.
Part of the annual DU Membership banquet is the opportunity to participate in games and raffle opportunities. A special raffle being offered this year as part of the banquet and auction is for a 42" High Definition TV and several guns. A limited number of tickets are being sold for this raffle and tickets are currently available from any DU committee member. The winner need not be present to win for the television raffle.
Individual tickets will cover the annual DU membership and a scrumptious meal being catered by the Rack Shack. Couple's tickets and Greenwing tickets, for youth 17 years and under are also available for the event at special prices.
With the proceeds from fundraising events such as the annual membership banquet and auction, in 2011, DU and its conservation partners invested $3,916,777 for the protection, enhancement and restoration of some 3,216 acres of habitat in Iowa. Since 1986, DU and its partners have conserved 70,679 acres across Iowa with a total cash investment of over $18.1 million.
As a preview to the annual event, the Palo Alto Sportsmen's Ducks Unlimited organization will host an Open House over the noon hour on Friday, November 9 at the VFW to allow the public to preview items. A lunch will be available during the open house and the public is encouraged to stop and view the various items that will be offered at the event later that evening.
Tickets are still available for the membership banquet and auction and may be obtained from any DU committee member. Those members include: Ron Riha 852-3818, Clint Young 260-7933, Brian Garrels 298-0882, Andy Stolley 480-5000, Grant Duhn 298-1185, Patrick Bailey 563-451-8505, and Eric Schmitz at 319-743-5451.
Other committee members include Colton Christensen, Kevin Christensen, Kyle Christensen and Brandon Jueneman.