Over 280 men and women and kids, all outdoor enthusiasts, filled a ballroom at the Billings Hotel and Convention Center for the Mule Deer Foundation's annual banquet and fundraiser.  With a live and silent auction, drawings and prizes, this was the event to bring your $100 bills and support this cause.

The auctions featured a dove hunt in Argentina, a hunt in Africa, wildlife prints, knifes, conceal carry purses with one containing a mystery handgun, crafted wooden items, firearms training, the chance to win a rifle, and many more.  The emcee of the function touted that there was a gun to win for every 10 people in attendance.

(I was really tempted by a wheelbarrow full of liquor, but wondered how to get the wheelbarrow into my car.  The alcohol would not have been a problem.)

The audience ate well on beef brisket in barbeque sauce and ribs.  After dinner came a variety of desserts.  Beer was served in red Solo cups with a drawing connected to the cups.

Credit: Canva
Credit: Canva

Inserted within the activities, the emcee and the organizer of the banquet stressed the Foundation's mission to uphold and advocate for the habitat for mule deer.  Paraphasing, "We need to make our voices heard to the policy makers.  Whenever we needed to state our case, only two or three people show up.  The politicians need to hear from all of us in the hundreds."

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Now I admit to being ignorant of the Mule Deer Foundation, the Elk Foundation, Ducks Unlimited and the like.  So in this case I looked them up.  All the information you need is in on their website, Conservation of Mule and Black-tailed Deer (muledeer.org)

The Mule Deer Foundation has chapters throughout Montana and the nation.  Their one-phrase mission is the conservation of mule deer, black-tailed deer and their habitat.  This preservation includes wildlife management and the education of young people in responsible hunting and shooting sports practices.  They even support fencing techniques to ensure unhindered deer movement across open countryside.

So please check out the MDF and the other outdoor groups before you give.  When you support the habitat for one, you will support the habitat for many.

Benton Lake National Wildlife Refuge, Montana

Benton Lake National Wildlife Refuge

Gallery Credit: Tammie Toren

Please Don't Befriend The Wildlife

While it may be tempting, trying to make a wild animal into a pet never really turns out well. They are wild for a reason. What looks furry and lovable may have a set of teeth that will leave a mark, for life!

Gallery Credit: JD Knite




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