Yes, there really are winners in those RMEF sweepstakes contests
When first notified, Al Barney and Jill Ekar could not believe it. And the husband-wife duo still could not believe it when they showed up at the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation’s headquarters and had the keys to a brand-new Ram truck placed in their hands (see photo at bottom of post).
“This is such an ultimate surprise. I never would’ve dreamed we’d do something like this. It’s fantastic,” said Barney.
“I was so blown away when we pulled up and there’s the truck and all these people,” added Ekar.
Yes, there really are winners in those RMEF sweepstakes contests. Al and Jill won the 2023 Ultimate Elk Hunter Sweepstakes after filling out their entry form and dropping it in the mail. They are not alone. More than 60 people won prizes ranging from a trip and hunting and optics packages to hunting gear, gift cards and other goodies.
Jill and Al learned about the organization at an outdoor sports show some 15 years ago. After talking to RMEF volunteers at a booth, they signed up to become members on the spot and volunteered to serve on their local committee one week later.
“We wanted to be part of something with a stature that I was educated about where RMEF was and what its goals were,” said Al. “That was very important to us to be involved with a group that was doing that kind of work – that great work!”
Strong and active supporters, they are life members, members of the Habitat Council and chose to include RMEF as a beneficiary in their estate planning.
“If you’re passionate about something, you want to help it. You want to get along and help it go forward,” said Jill. “And every time we saw what was going on, it was like, ‘Oh yes, we should do that. We should help. We should help them make more money.’ This is all cool stuff we’re doing.”
While Jill and Al are winners, the real winners are elk, mule deer, moose, pronghorn antelope, bears, mountain lions, scores of other wildlife species, hunting and conservation because the dollars generated in the annual sweepstakes support RMEF’s mission.
(Photo credit: Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation)