Highland Wildlife Expo set for Thursday

Published 12:05 am Sunday, September 6, 2015

VIDALIA — This Thursday the Vidalia Conference and Convention Center will welcome the 9th annual Highland Wildlife Expo, an event put on by Highland Baptist Church showcasing some of the most popular outdoor things around.

Entrance into the event is free, and food and drinks will be provided.

“We’ve got a group cooking jambalaya and we’ll have tea and coke so people can eat and walk around and check out all the booths,” event organizer Bruce McCall said.

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The booths, which McCall expects more than 30, will be the highlight of the night.

“The first half of the night there will be a combination of crafts like leatherworks, handmade knives and arrows, taxidermist, antique guns and other sporting paraphernalia,” McCall said.

All the while, door prizes will be given out, and McCall said last year more than $20,000 in door prizes were handed to participants.

Moving into the second half of the night, McCall said speakers will take the show.

“We will have the game wardens from both Mississippi and Louisiana departments tell the crowd about any rule changes for the upcoming season and also have a question and answer period,” McCall said. “Then we will have Mitchell Miles, who has a special skill, shooting a bow with one arm, show his ability. Then we will have Gary Miller of Outdoor Truths speak, who is a hunter on TV, an author and outdoor enthusiast share some of his stories.”

McCall said they will finish the night by giving away grand prizes including a Polaris four wheeler, a boat, an AR-15, a hunting and fishing trip, a chain saw and other large items.

The fun isn’t limited to adults, though. McCall said the expo will also feature a children’s area full of fun things for them to do.

“Smokey the Bear will be live in there and we will also have animals like snakes and lizards, There will also be face painting and lots of gifts.” McCall said. “The idea is families can come and the kids would have their own special thing to do.”

McCall said there were more than 1,300 people at the event last year, and he only expects those numbers to grow.

Doors for the expo open at 6 p.m.