Wildlife Expo Hits Target

Published 6:00 pm Sunday, September 19, 2010

Brookhaven’s Julius T. Smith marveled at the wall of mountedtrophy deer heads with his grandson Dorian Beard Saturday afternoonduring the Lincoln County Wildlife Expo. The trip to the expo wasanother way of sharing their love for hunting.

“He’s in love with it the same way I am,” Smith said. “We couldstay out there all day long.”

In addition to spending time with his grandson, Smith enjoyedvisiting the various sales booths and talking hunting with fellowenthusiasts. Smith even managed to pick up a tip on luring deerfrom one of the vendors.

“I’m going to take it to the woods with me,” Smith said.

Smith and his grandson were among hundreds who came out to theLincoln Civic Center Friday and Saturday for the third-annualevent. Organizers were hoping for more than 3,000 visitors, andcomments on the crowd size suggested that goal was achieved ordefinitely within reach by late Saturday.

“It’s been packed out, and it’s not just hunters,” said BertCarollo while talking about the variety of attendees and addingthat more than 800 came out Friday night.

Carollo was at the expo to unveil the CajunXtreme game lift. Thedevice allows hunters to lift their prize animals onto theirall-terrain vehicles for easy carrying.

“This is our breakout weekend. We’ve got it on the market now,”said Carollo. “We’ve had a really big response.”

Brookhaven-Lincoln County Chamber of Commerce Executive VicePresident Cliff Brumfield, who was at the expo to promote a drawingfor an all-terrain vehicle to benefit the Mississippi Scholarsprogram, also commented on the number of attendees.

“The crowd has been excellent,” he said. “It’s been a wonderfulevent for people of all ages.”

Brumfield said it was clear the event was well-planned andwell-organized.

Sandra Gerald, a member of the expo’s organizing committee, saidshe was very pleased with response to the event.

“It’s been fabulous,” she said Saturday afternoon as she went tocheck on the 3-D archery exhibition. “We’ve had a steady crowd eversince we opened the doors yesterday.”

Gerald said a rock-climbing wall had been popular with youngexpo-goers and she had seen a number of people leaving with fullbags after visiting with merchant vendors. She herself got a gooddeal on a pair of rhinestone-studded flip-flops, although shecautioned they will not be part of her hunting wardrobe.

“I won’t wear them to the woods,” she said.

Rachel Langley helped out at a booth for Road and TrackPowersports in Brookhaven. She said around 60 T-shirts were givenout to children in addition to promoting the business.

“I think it went well,” she said. “We had a lot of fun for thekids.”

There was a wide variety to merchants with offerings for peopleof all ages and outdoors interests. A camouflage bag distributorseemed to be among the popular booths.

Marty Posey, with Oakwood Outdoors, Inc. in northern Alabama,said the company makes camouflage bags for guns and bows, gun casesand other items. He said representatives attend shows in all stateseast of the Mississippi River, as well as Texas and Oklahoma -about 35 states overall.

While the Lincoln County show is relatively small in comparisonto others he visits, Posey indicated there are other factors thatgo into making a show a success.

“You’ve got the support of the town,” Posey said. “This is areally good show.”