Outdoor Corner: Anything Outdoors Fall Fundraiser Coming Up

Lyle Johnson
One of the many hunts that Anything Outdoors provides for kids with health issues that Ascension Outdoors was privileged to participate in.

Jacob and Renee Heath would like to send a personal invitation to attend the 3rd Annual Fall Festival fundraiser for Anything Outdoors Helping Kids. The Fall Festival will take place at the Knights of Columbus Hall at 43472 Black Bayou Road on September 14.

The doors will open at 9 a.m. to the public but the days' work will start off around 5 a.m. when the cook-offs begin. Teams of jambalaya cooks along with teams of cooks putting ribs on the rack will get an early start so their recipes can be cooked, judged, and served to the entrants of the festival.

The whole story for Anything Outdoors had its beginning when Renee and Jacob's son Preston was diagnosed with a very rare, life threatening blood disorder called Severe Aplastic Anemia. Severe Aplastic Anemia is a disease in which the bone marrow does not make enough red or white blood cells or platelets for the body.

Preston had six months of treatment done at Our Lady of the Lake Children's Hospital but on May 13, 2010 the family learned that the treatment did not work as anticipated. Preston's doctors told his parents that his only hope would be a bone marrow transplant at St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital in Memphis, Tenn.

Preston received his life saving bone marrow transplant on September 29, 2009, the day after his third birthday. Preston had a lot of struggles after the transplant with many viruses, graft vs. host, fevers, and all-too-many hospital stays to count, but after seven months Preston was able to return to Louisiana cured of Severe Aplastic Anemia. He still has annual visits to St. Jude and some side effects, but Preston is now a happy, healthy boy again!

This inspired the Heath's to give back to other kids and families that could use a little help in the financial area and to take as many kids that might not get the opportunity to experience the outdoors on the trip of a lifetime. Goosie and I along with the Ascension Outdoors TV crew took part in a squirrel hunt last season that included a few of those special kids.

Hence it's worth the labor of love put forth by Renee, Jacob, their pro-staff, board of directors and the many volunteers it takes for Anything Outdoors to give as much as they can to those that need it most.

For a $5 dollar entry fee there will be plenty of food, including the jambalaya and ribs cooked in the contests. There will be plenty of food for the kids and a great silent auction where you can get some really cool stuff. A blood drive has also been arranged to help out more folks.

Live music will take place all day long into the night starting at 11 a.m. with Dustin Guedry followed by Ryan Foret, Sugar Shaker, Xpress, Lil' Bayou Band and Jordan Babin. The two wrap up bands will be a pair of local favorites, Kenny Cornett at 6 p.m. and Trent Bourgeois & Fly by Nite at 8 p.m.

The more money raised, the more kids and families get blessed. If you can't make the Fall Fest you can donate online at www.AnythingOutdoorsHelpingKids.com. Until the next time, remember to keep the slack out and set the hook hard. Be safe in the outdoors, and may God truly bless you!

Lyle Johnson is a free-lance writer, co-host of Ascension Outdoors TV and Curator of the Louisiana State Fish Records. He can be contacted at reelman@eatel.net.

Outdoor Calendar

EASL Monthly Meeting: 3rd Monday every month, East Ascension Sportsman's League meeting held at Gonzales Fire Dept. on Orice Roth Rd. starting at 7 p.m. A meal served and special speaker will be in attendance.

Wednesday Evening Bass Tourney: Every Wednesday at Canal Bank from 5 p.m. until dark. Fee $40/boat, one time registration fee of $40 going toward the Classic Tournament. Weekly event through spring, summer. Call Canal Bank for information. 225-695-9074

CCA Louisiana S.T.A.R. Fishing Rodeo: May 25 thru Sept 2 summer-long CCA Louisiana saltwater fishing event. Tagged Redfish, Offshore, Inshore, Ladies & Children's divisions. Registration required. Must be CCA member. Website: ccastar.com.

Need an event publicized? Contact Lyle at reelman@eatel.net.