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Hundreds turn out to raise money for Buckner in Longview

By Ellen Goodacre
July 12, 2015 at 4 a.m.

Gene Howard of Longview takes aim while participating in the 16th Annual Texas Bank and Trust Sporting Clays Tournament Saturday, July 11, 2015, at Prairie Creek Sporting Clays. (Les Hassell/News-Journal Photo)

More than 300 East Texans participated in the 16th Annual Texas Bank and Trust Sporting Clays shootout benefiting Buckner Children and Family Services on Saturday.

"I love this job," Event Coordinator Ginia Northcutt said. "I love the chaos — it's three days long. We've had over 500 shooters in three days. And it's fun."

The shootout is a three-day event, which consisted of a junior clay shooting tournament Thursday; a Twilight Shootout and silent auction Friday; and the Early Riser Shootout, auctions and raffle Saturday.

The tournament provides 60 percent of Buckner's operating budget, Northcutt said.

Buckner's Children and Family Services provides foster care and adoption programs for children and offers services to help low-income families. Buckner also operates Westminster Place, a senior living community in Longview.

Eighty-one teams of four people each participated in Saturday's tournament. Participants shoot 100 targets and are scored on how many targets they shoot.

"I had a buddy invite me. He had a team, so I joined him," said first-time participant Tali Wilkinson of Longview.

"I thought it was great. It's a well-run event, and it's all for a good cause," she said.

Iris Newkirk of Longview attended the tournament with her husband this year, her third time, and was keeping a close eye on her silent bid for a watch donated by Murray Jewelry.

"I always want to support Buckner because of the amazing things they do for those in need, especially children," Newkirk said.

"I have a heart for children and orphans and single moms. And they do all of that, and anything I can do (to support) I'm going to do it."

Newkirk and her husband attended their first shootout after being invited by Marcia McDaniel and her husband, Steven McDaniel, owner of U.S. Title Company.

"I've been coming out since the first year when it started, and my husband and his company have supported the shoot since the first year," said Marcia McDaniel of Longview.

"It's just been very much a love of ours for all those years, even before the shoot. (Steven McDaniel's) father stayed at Westminster at Buckner, and my stepmother stayed there. So that has been such a benefit for Longview and for our elderly, and it keeps them active."

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