By Kate Kirby
A Hawkins tradition, the ninth Annual Vic Russell Tomahawk and Knife-Throwing Contest attracted a crowd of enthusiasts from as far away as Colorado. The event was held February 13th at Hawkins City Park with the contest, pioneer tents, crafts and an authentic teepee set up to help celebrate the historical art.
Many attendees dressed in period attire as men and women competed head-to-head in the art of Tomahawk and Knife-throwing. The targets were large chunks of trees that resemble dart boards set on primitive easels at ‘throwing’ height.
Contestants competed in a number of different throwing games such as ‘Tic-Tac-Toe’, where playing cards were set in a pattern of three across and three down. Throwers had five chances to compete for points by hitting the cards three in a row. Some could try for 5 points by hitting a combination of ‘Tic-Tac-Toe’ moves.
“We started this event in honor of my father, Victor Russell, who loved throwing so much and now we are just one big family,” said event organizer Vicky Russell-Prestridge.
The event has become sort of a family reunion to many of the attendees who do not see each other except at this annual event.