MIDLOTHIAN – Members of the Ellis County Friends of the National Rifle Association (NRA) held its eighth annual fundraiser banquet and auction Thursday evening. More than 300 quests attended the fundraiser held at the Midlothian Conference Center.

“The funds we raise here tonight go to training youth in safe shooting sports and gun handling responsibility,” Ellis County NRA Chairman John Capps said.

Through live auctions and several raffles, Capps said he hopes to raise between $30,000 and $40,000.  “Our own Ellis County Shooting Sports 4-H club has been a recipient of grants awarded to youth groups throughout the United States,” Capps said.   

Ben Terry of the Ellis County Shooting Sports 4’H Group described the growth of the group. “Four years ago we started with just a few members. We have grown to more than 70 kids. We want to thank the Ellis County Friends of the NRA for helping us grow,” Terry said.

In the four years since the organization of the local 4-H group, they have received more than $30,000 in grant monies from the NRA Group.

“We support groups like the Ellis County 4-H group through a grant application process. Each group applies for grants to the National association. The grants are awarded to help continue the programs promotion.  

Representing the NRA. North Texas Friends of NRA representative Chris Griffin attended Thursday evening’s banquet. “All the money we make here goes directly back into the foundation. Last year, nationally we funded $32 million in youth education,” Griffin said.

The finale of the evening was the live auction where custom hunting knives, artworks, and several collector firearms were auctioned.