ElkFest is an exciting time for celebrating nature, outdoor skills, hunting and ecological education and awareness. This annual event, which includes the High Noon Chili Cook-Off and the Mountain Man Rendezvous, supports the National Elk Refuge with a large portion of auction proceeds going back to habitat enhancement projects on the Refuge.
Every spring, thousands of elk wintering on the National Elk Refuge lose their antlers before they migrate to their summer range. The Boy Scouts assist the Refuge with harvesting the shed antlers and auction them to bidders from around the world who make furniture, wall decorations, jewelry and food products from them. Last year,13,698 pounds of antlers were sold at the auction, well above the 10-year average of 8,197 pounds. Bidders paid an average of $16.65 per pound.