Jessica Parkins, of Greeneville, Tn., is the winner of the permit to participate in the inaugural Tennessee Young Sportsman Elk Hunt to be held Oct. 19-20.
A 14-year old rising ninth grader at South Greene High School, Jessica was selected in a random computer drawing from a pool of almost 300 applicants from ages 13-16. The announcement was made Saturday afternoon by Ed Carter, executive director of the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency, in conjunction with the Second Annual Wildlife & Land Expo being held at the Gaylord Opryland Hotel and Convention Center. All of the youngsters who entered to have an opportunity for the youth elk hunt tag received a letter to attend the announcement.
Jessica was in attendance with her parents, Robert and Cindy, and younger brothers Caleb, 11, and Corey, 9. She will be able to hunt on any five of the elk hunting zones designated at the North Cumberland Wildlife Management Area, located northwest of Knoxville.
In addition to receiving the permit, Jessica received several gifts from the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, including a new hunting rifle and an assortment of gifts from the Quality Deer Management Association. The presentation of the permit came at the QDMA’s Rack Pack display area. In addition, all those youngsters who entered the contest and were in attendance for the announcement received a gift bag.
Along with the TWRA’s Director Carter, comments were also made by TWRA Forestry and Wildlife Division Chief Daryl Ratajczak, Bill Carman of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, and Daniel Bartley of the QDMA.
The state’s fourth sanctioned elk hunt will precede the youth hunt and will be held Oct. 15-19 with five hunters participating. The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Commission approved the 2012 special elk hunting season and the addition of a permit for one state resident to participate in the first youth hunt at its February 2012 meeting.
Jessica is pictured with her family, parents Roberts and Cindy, brothers Corey and Caleb, along with Director Carter and Daryl Ratajcak, TWRA Forestry and Wildlife Division Chief. Jessica was presented with several gifts, including a rifle from Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation.