When an unknown number shows up on the caller ID, Weatherford Downtown Café owner Britton Schweitzer just lets it go to voicemail.
“It’s usually people trying to sell me stuff, not Texas Parks and Wildlife calling because I won an amazing hunt,” Schweitzer said.
Schweitzer and 13 other lucky sportsmen are clearing their calendars for some of the best hunting packages in the Lone Star State won through Texas Parks and Wildlife’s Big Time Texas Hunts program.
The program’s raffle offers hunting packages ranging from a guided white-tailed deer hunting experience in the South Texas brush country to the Grand Slam package which treats one Texan and a non-hunting friend to food, lodging, taxidermy and a personal guide service for four separate hunts for desert bighorn sheep, white-tailed deer, pronghorn and desert mule deer. Schweitzer won the Grand Slam.
“When I get my license online I throw $100 toward the different hunts but never expect to win,” Schweitzer said. “I am an avid fisherman and hunter and I see it as basically donating $100 every year to public lands,” he said.
The small town café owner said he usually donates to local causes and was flabbergasted to have won the program’s Grand Slam. He said he moved to Weatherford a few years ago with his wife to raise a family. He hopes to bring her along on his hunts.
“I think it’s an awesome opportunity and I am excited I got picked,” he said. “ I never win anything and it was a pretty big shocker.”
Big Time Texas Hunts are offered through an annual raffle. This season saw 62,610 entries generating almost $600,000. Ticket sales support wildlife research, habitat management and public hunting in the state of Texas. Ticket purchasers must be at least 17. For more information on this hunting program, visit www.tpwd.state.tx.us/buybtth.
Following are the winners of this year’s Big Time Texas Hunts.
- Grand Slam — Michael Schweitzer, Weatherford
- Premium Buck Hunt — Joseph Yuras, Garden Ridge
- Exotic Safari — Jimmy Webb, Tyler and Martha Vogelsang, Hearne
- Whitetail Bonanza — Tommy Dulin, Colorado City; Ivan Berry, Pasadena; Francis Sharp, Pasadena; Michael Broderick, Conroe; Joe Mills, Gonzales; Ramona Bourgeois, Concord, CA; Humbert Trevino, Laredo; Randall Coombs, Spearman
- Waterfowl Adventure — Alexander Hamilton, San Antonio
- Gator Hunt — Darren Lasorte, Fairfax, VA