Business grows from friends' love for hunting

CorrespondentNovember 20, 2013 

Who hasn’t sat with friends and family around a campfire laughing, talking, dreaming and scheming? Jason Alford did, and he ended up in business.

The 25-year-old Franklin County resident and his partners can be found at festivals and outdoors shows selling locally printed clothing and locally made duck calls and lanyards.

It started about a year ago when Alford and friends and family decided to form a private hunting club. They combined family land and share expenses for seed, food plots and other needs. And they decided they needed a name.

“And we just brainstormed on names, and we came up with Quacks and Racks,” said Alford, a 2011 Wake Tech graphic design graduate and production manager for SpeedPro Imaging in Raleigh. “We were just a hunting club, and we have a bunch of friends who loved the name and thought it was catchy. One friend mentioned making T-shirts. That idea grew.”

Alford partners with friend Brad Butler, 29, who works at Lake Royale near Bunn, and his father, Jan Alford, who owns ProTronics in Knightdale. Co-founder Gary Lovy is a big part of the club, as is Alford cousin Cole Williams, Jason Alford said. All live around Pilot near the Franklin-Wake county line.

“It’s been really good,” Jason Alford said. “At our first show at the Wendell Harvest Festival, it just went a lot better than I expected to. … Our Facebook page has really done well – almost to 800 likes, and it’s only been up for a little over a month.”

Logo-bearing items sold at www.quacksandracks.com ranges from a $5 drink koozie to a $59 Realtree camo hooded jacket. A pink shirt for women is popular. The site also offers hand-turned wooden duck calls made by Kenny Gwinn of Pilot and, for holding the calls, paracord lanyards created by Chad Barnett of Garner.

Alford and partners are planning to greet customers at the Dec. 21-22 Capital City Gun Show at the State Fairgrounds.

“Friends who love to hunt and hunt together – that’s the people we want to make our products for,” Alford said.

Spotted sea trout comment sought: The N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries is weighing whether to reduce recreational and commercial limits for spotted sea trout. To help with the decision, the division is accepting public comment until Jan. 18 on a draft supplement to the Spotted Sea trout Fishery Management Plan.

View the draft supplement at http://portal.ncdenr.org/web/mf/fmps-under-development, and send written comment to Chip Collier, 127 Cardinal Drive, Wilmington NC 28405 or Chip.Collier@ncdenr.gov. For more information, go to portal.ncdenr.org/web/mf, or call (252) 726-7021.

Show returns: Shoppers can buy, sell or trade modern and collectible firearms, knives and hunting and fishing equipment at the Dixie Gun and Knife Show at the State Fairgrounds in Raleigh. Admission is $8 for ages 12 and up. The show runs 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday and 10-5 Sunday. Learn more at www.dixiegunandknifeshow.com.

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