Beards for Benefits holds annual hunts, raises thousands for vets and disabled kids

Published 10:30 am Thursday, April 11, 2024

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Veterans and disabled children were paired up over the weekend for this year’s Beards for Benefits (B4B) turkey hunt. This year saw 13 vets and 13 kids paired up on hunts across the region. The non-profit event and organization was created several years ago by Klay “Pudoo” Armstrong, following his survival of an industrial accident that left him severely injured and burned. Armstrong described this year’s participation as “about average.”

In the years since its creation, Beards for Benefits has expanded, now with a separate chapter, the Wiregrass Chapter, operating in Cowarts, Alabama, with 10 kids and 10 vets this year.

“We kind of wanted to expand, if I had it my way I’d like to have it in every state,” Armstrong said.

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Beards for Benefits splits its events into two weekends: first, a banquet night for the kids, veterans and community to attend, complete with raffles and auctions for fundraising, followed by the actual weekend for hunts. According to Armstrong, this has been one of the best years yet for B4B, with this year’s banquet hosting 530 people, and the funds raised coming just short of $200,000. He also thanked the event’s sponsors, as well as the landowners who lent their properties to hunters this year.

“It was very humbling,” he said.

When asked if B4B plans on making any changes in coming years, Armstrong said no: “Why mess with what works?”