Beards for Benefits holds annual banquet before hunts

Published 4:39 pm Tuesday, March 19, 2024

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With the first day of spring having finally arrived, hunters are preparing for turkey season to begin again. Which means it is also time for this year’s Beards for Benefits (B4B) banquet and hunt. Attendees gathered at Klay “Pudoo” Armstrong’s property Saturday afternoon to attend the banquet, enjoying a seafood meal along with both a live and silent auction.

Armstrong took to the stage that night, recognizing the staff that helped organize the event, as well as this year’s veteran participants. The B4B program pairs veterans and disabled kids on hunting trips around southwest Georgia, as well as parts of Alabama and Florida. Armstrong retold the story of how he came up with the idea of the program; after being injured in an industrial accident in 2006, Armstrong found himself upset and bitter. It was during a hunt with a disabled child that he experienced a change of heart, and the idea for Beards for Benefits was born.

The event not only arranges these hunts, but also uses its raised funds to support the kids. This year, Joel Granaldos received a new track chair, while Guthrie Milton had his first turkey, killed last year with B4B, taxidermied.

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B4B’s Chason Newberry described this year’s banquet as “the best one yet,” estimating it had the highest turnout at roughly 550.

The banquet and actual hunts have since been split, with the hunts scheduled for the first weekend in April.