I’ll have more on these two quacker backer events next week, but for now, don’t forget that two of the biggest local Ducks Unlimited fundraising dinners are quickly approaching.

First up is the 44th annual Texoma DU event, which will make a move to new banquet facilities for its dinner on Tuesday, Oct. 15. Incidentally, the doors open up at 6 p.m.

The dinner remains within Denison’s city limits, but this year it will be at the Hilton Garden Inn banquet facilities at 5015 S. U.S. 75, a well known spot that is directly across the highway from Texoma Medical Center.

If you buy advanced tickets, prices are $60 for adults and $30 for youth 17 years of age and under (Greenwings). At the door on the night of the 2019 banquet, ticket prices go up an additional $10. And don’t forget the event’s three sponsorship levels ($300, $750 and $1,500), each one bringing various amounts of tickets and an entry into the Texoma DU sponsor-only drawing.

For information on the 44th annual Texoma DU dinner, please contact current chairman Kris Spiegel at 903-820-8882 or past chairman Eric Kloppers at 903-815-2229.

A few days after the Texoma DU event is held south of the Red River, it will be time for the Bryan County DU Chapter to hold their annual fundraiser on the north side of the border stream.

Like their fundraising brethren to the south, the Durant DU chapter is also making a location switch this year, heading to the Top Notch Turf Farms in Colbert. The dinner begins at 6 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 24.

For information on the Bryan County DU dinner, call Chris Dorman at 405-517-7187.

Additional information on both local events can be found at DU’s website, www.ducks.org.

Denison Knife Maker Honored with “Best Ever” Nod: It’s no secret that Charles Allen and his Denison based Knives of Alaska and DiamondBlade Knives cutlery companies are at the top of the game.

I’ve written as much a number of times down through the years, watching as Allen — who along with his wife Jody owns and runs the local companies in addition to the Alaska Expedition Company on the Tsiu River — has worked tirelessly to turn out one award winning knife after another.

Designed and tested at his hunting and fishing lodge near Cordova, Alaska, Allen’s commitment to excellence and attention to detail has helped spur on a 25-year history at KOA, which turns out some of the best hunting and fishing knives ever made.

But in the early 2000s, Allen upped the ante and made knife making history when he got together with metallurgists from Brigham Young University, taking friction forging in the oil industry’s quest for better drill bits and applying it to the making of even better knives, all of that thanks to molecular level science.

The result was the formation of the DiamondBlade Knives company, a group headquartered at North Texas Regional Airport as they turn out high-end hunting knives. But these aren’t like cheaper products you might buy, instead being heirloom quality items that are wickedly sharp and strong, maintain their keen edge for crazy lengths of time, and accomplish all of this while being hand-crafted works of art.

Winning numerous awards down through the years and being featured in a How It’s Made television program earlier this year, Allen and his employees have recently stacked up another honor for their work. That came just a couple of weeks ago when longtime Field & Stream writer Dave Petzal wrote a story entitled “The Five Best Hunting Knives Ever Made.”

Included on his prestigious list was the DiamondBlade Summit, a rugged and beautiful hunting knife that comes with various handle options. And made just down the road in Denison, no less.

To learn more about DiamondBlade Knives extensive line of cutlery products, call 903-786-7366, visit the company headquarters at 3100 Airport Drive in Denison, or go to the website at www.diamondbladeknives.com. To learn more about KOA products, visit www.knivesofalaska.com.

CWD Deer Reminders: With whitetail archery seasons beginning in both Texas and Oklahoma over the past week, it’s time for a reminder about the changes that chronic wasting disease (CWD) has brought to the local hunting landscape.

First, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department reminds hunters that they should review the agency’s CWD regulations at www.tpwd.texas.gov/huntwild/wild/diseases/cwd. The website link contains a comprehensive amount of information about the disease, as well as CWD testing requirements and carcass movement restrictions in place for the 2019-20 season.

Next, keep in mind that due to the slowly increasing presence of CWD within certain parts of Texas, there are now mandatory checks involved in the Trans-Pecos, South-Central, and Panhandle portions of the Lone Star State. If you take a mule deer, white-tailed deer, elk, exotic red deer, or one of other CWD susceptible species in those zones, you are required to bring the animal to a TPWD check station within 48 hours of harvest.

What’s more, to help monitor for the disease and to try and manage its spread, TPWD urges Lone Star State hunters to voluntarily submit their harvest for CWD surveillance testing, even if that harvest occurs outside of known CWD zones.

Finally, the agency reminds Texas hunters who travel out-of-state and harvest deer, elk, moose, or other susceptible species in other CWD-positive states, that they must also comply with carcass movement restrictions when bringing those harvested animals back into Texas.

See the TPWD website for more details or call toll-free at 1-800-792-1112.