Hunting Heroes postpone barbecue fundraiser because COVID-19 concerns
RIPLEY — After consulting with the local health department and emergency medical services, Jackson County Hunting Heroes has decided to postpone its first-ever barbeque showdown until spring.
Frank Miller, President of Hunting Heroes had been praying about whether to keep or cancel the event with the uptick in COVID cases in the county.
"That was a hard decision, but we feel it was the right decision," Miller said.
The group has veterans who served in Afghanistan, World War II and even Vietnam. Some of these veterans may fall under the at-risk category for COVID, Miller said.
As of Sept. 29, Jackson County is still in the red with COVID cases with a 16.19% positivity rate and a 106.98 infection rate.
This isn't the first event in the county that's been affected by COVID this fall. Ravenswood's Harvest in the Wood festival was canceled earlier this month. Events across the state, like Bridge Day, have also been canceled.
More than 20 people were signed up to participate in the cookoff — 12 national competitors and 11 locals. Proceeds from the event will go toward Hunting Heroes. The nonprofit uses funds to help provide food, shelter and sometimes medical equipment to veterans in need.
Miller is hoping to reschedule the event for late April or early May 2022.
The group is still planning on having its annual hunt this year from Dec. 9 to 11.
— Katelyn Waltemyer (she/her) is the General Assignment and Enterprise Reporter for Jackson Newspapers in Jackson County, West Virginia. Have a news tip on local government or education? Or a good feature? You can reach Katelyn at email@example.com. Follow her on Twitter @Kate_Waltemyer.