S.C. kids encouraged to participate in coon hunts

Courtesy of SCDNR

COLUMBIA, S.C. (WOLO) – The S.C. Department of Natural Resources has announced a statewide series of youth coon hunts, sponsored by the S.C. Coon Hunters Association.

The hunts will culminate with the State Championship Youth Coon Hunt on March 3 at the Webb Wildlife Center in Hampton County.

The hunts are meant to teach participants ethics and sportsmanship. DNR said two, $500 scholarships will be awarded at the championship for the first place finished in each age group. Two additional $500 scholarships will be given out based on participation in the qualifying youth hunts.

DNR officials said that competitors can hunt in as many hunts as they choose – all the events are free. Official rules state that no raccoons are actually killed and guns are not allowed. Each hunter needs a coon dog, and must be able to acknowledge when his or her dog strikes and trees. Officials said winners are determined based on their dog’s ability to strike a trail and tree a raccoon.

If you’re an interested youth hunter, parents should contact the sponsoring clubs for more information.

Here are the dates, locations and contact information for the regional youth coon hunts (bench shows are at 4 p.m. and hunts begin at 6 p.m. for all events):

  • Oct. 21 – Darlington, sponsored by Black Creek Coon Hunters Association. Contact: Harvey Drawdy; (843) 610-4096
  • November 4 Edgefield, sponsored by the Red Hill Houndsmen Coon Club. Contact: Wayne Agner Jr.; (803) 215-9911
  • November 11 Saluda, Sponsored by the Saluda County CHA. Contact: Will Deloach; (864) 992-8804 or wdeloach@saludaschools.org. (PKC sanctioned hunt)
  • December 2Georgetown, sponsored by the Hell Hole Swamp Coon Hunters Club. Contact: Floyd Lambert; 843-264-8093 (UKC State Youth Championship)
  • December 16Lancaster, sponsored by the Lancaster County Coon Hunters Club. Contact: Joel Henson; (803) 283-7815 (PKC sanctioned hunt)
  • January 13 – Bowman, sponsored by the Orangeburg Coon Hunters Association. Contact: Doug Shuler; (803) 682-0418.
  • January 27 – Norway, sponsored by the Norway CHA. Contact: Mark Whetstone; (803) 682-3011 (ACHA State Youth Championship)
  • February 3Newberry, sponsored by the Whitmire CHA. Contact: Roger Enlow; (864) 923-5431 (AKC sanctioned event)
  • February 10 – Ridgeville, sponsored by the Summerville CHA. Contact: Ed Kimmons, (843) 619-5265
  • March 3 – Garnett, South Carolina State Youth Coon Championship, sponsored by the SCDNR. Contact: (803) 734-3609
Categories: State