Etcetera - 01/19/11

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That the Pheasants Forever organization isn't just about a bunch of hunters was a pleasant discovery for member Jim Sonne, although he does enjoy hunting.

The Walla Walla man discovered when he joined Blue Mountain Pheasants Forever Chapter 258 that its mission is habitat preservation and projects for local young people, both which hit high on his appeal-o-meter.

He's so enthusiastic about PF, he's now current chapter president and quite involved in organizing its 19th annual fundraising banquet, which will be Feb. 26 this year in the Walla Walla Fairgrounds Community Center.

Graze Catering will offer a variety of salads to complement its prime rib and salmon dinners.

PF will be aided at the shindig by volunteers from Walla Walla Sweets Roller Derby Girls. The social hour will begin at 4 p.m. followed by dinner at 6.

Area businesses and individuals have helped the non-profit organization preserve land in the area and hold special kids' events by making significant donations to the banquet raffles and silent and live auctions, Jim said in the newsletter.

To make donations or for ticket details, contact Jim at 525-3550 or jimsonne@aol.com, or Allen Aplass, treasurer, 529-3829 or aplass@sitestar.net.

In the hopper for spring, members expect to plant more than 1,000 trees and shrubs, a project that gets active involvement from landowners, including farmers.

PF's youth hunt in mid-September was a big success, Jim said, so another such event may be in the works this time. They are mulling starting a shooting sports club with Walla Walla 4-H that's like one in Dayton for participants under 18.

"More than half of our members joined because of our youth and habitat projects. We just approved a $1,000 donation to the Walla Walla 4-H and Dayton 4-H. Besides being busy with our February banquet, I am also working with Friends of NRA, Ducks Unlimited, Rocky Mountain Elks and Tri-City Steelheaders to put on a program next summer, dedicated to the youths of this area," Jim said.

More details about the group and its activities are also available at www.bmpf258.org.

Etcetera appears in daily and Sunday editions. Annie Charnley Eveland can be reached at annieeveland@wwub.com or afternoons at 526-8313.

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