MAC prepares to host 2022 Elk Hunt Draw

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Published: May. 12, 2022 at 6:37 PM EDT
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PRESTONSBURG, Ky. (WYMT) - Officials with the Mountain Arts Center and Prestonsburg Tourism are excited to host the 2022 Elk Hunt Draw.

In 2017, the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources approached the MAC with plans to host an official elk hunting tag drawing at the venue. Five years later, the event has taken on its own identity.

“Instead of posting the names online, we wanted to make it a reveal,” said MAC Executive Director Joe Campbell. “A nice reveal with an event, vendors, music, getting everybody together and have a good time.”

With only 594 tags to be claimed and nearly 80,000 hunters signed up for a chance to win in 2021, the chance to win an elk tag is slim, but folks across the country and across the world have still entered to win.

“They’re drawn from all over the country,” said Campbell, “and I think one time we had one from another country.”

Officials said, even if you are not winning an elk tag, the event is still fun for everyone.

“If you win a tag, it’s amazing, there’s nothing better than having people here to win,” said Prestonsburg Tourism Executive Director Samantha Johnson, “but then also, even if they don’t win, everybody just talks about what a great time they have, so it’s the perfect outdoor, hunter’s, spot to be.”

On Friday, May 13, the MAC will be hosting a Kickoff Concert. On Saturday, May 14, doors for the Elk Hunt Draw will open at 10 a.m. with drawings beginning at 11:30 a.m. Later that night, the Kentucky Opry Jr. Pros will take the stage for their rock show at 7 p.m. to close out the weekend of events.

Officials said these events will bring folks into the community to enjoy Eastern Kentucky while also boosting the economy.

“It’s bringing people to the community and there are some hotels bought, a lot of food bought,” said Campbell, “and just bringing people to see the awesome Star City of Prestonsburg and the Mountain Arts Center.”

Johnson also said Eastern Kentucky has the second-largest elk population, just behind Colorado, and these hunts are essential for healthy population control.

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