Yampa Valley Friends of NRA bite more than the bullet together | CraigDailyPress.com

Yampa Valley Friends of NRA bite more than the bullet together

Janelle O'Dea

Larona and Dwight McPherson, seated, buy roses and tickets from Yampa Valley Friends of NRA members Hannah Beckett, left and Miranda Blomquist to enter a drawing for the camouflage rifle Blomquist is holding.

Saturday night contained as much fun as the Yampa Valley Friends of the National Rifle Association could have without shooting guns.

The group's 20th annual banquet was held beginning 5:30 p.m. Saturday at the Boys & Girls Club of Craig.

NRA members from all over Colorado came to eat, auction and socialize with other gun owners. Attendants participated in a live auction, silent auction and several other drawings.

The Chairman of the group, Andy Bullen, said 30 guns would have new owners by the end of the night.

"Of course, they'll have to go to the gun store on Monday and get all of the paperwork done," Bullen said. "They're not going home with anyone tonight."

The proceeds from drawings for guns, handbags, DVD players and more support the $4,000 in scholarships Yampa Valley Friends of NRA provides to area kids who participate in shooting sports.

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Other proceeds will go to the 4-H Club shooting teams and the Bears Ears Sportsman Club.

Bullen said proceeds were previously used to build a classroom since used by area police and other community groups.

"We'd like to add other stuff to make it a better and safer range," Bullen said.

Hayden residents Kevin and Jill Murphy celebrated their wedding anniversary by attending the NRA banquet.

"It's just a fun night to support the NRA, and we're avid hunters," Jill Murphy said. "It's fun to get out and see everyone."

Brad Dreier, an NRA field representative out of Littleton, said the night had one main goal.

"Fundraising," he said. "The whole mission of friends of NRA is to fundraise. We're raising money for shooting sports."

Some lucky Craig residents got free tickets to the banquet. Larona and Dwight McPherson got tickets from one of Dwight's co-workers. Dwight shoots for sport and entered the "guns ‘n roses" drawing with hopes to win a new Colt.

Miranda Blomquist and Hannah Beckett, both friends of members of the NRA, sold Dwight a rose and drawing ticket for the chance to win a camouflage rifle.

"I'm here to support my gun rights," Dwight said.

Contact Janelle O’Dea at 970-875-1795 or jodea@CraigDailyPress.com or follow her on Twitter @jayohday.