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"Unquestionably, in 1981, the first Dixie Deer Classic exposed the tip of an unstoppable rising phenomenon. It provided an event for hunters to meet each other, to see firsthand the vast array of hunting equipment, taxidermy services, archery supplies and other whitetail related products; to meet the biggest names in the whitetail world; in general, spend the entire day engrossed in whitetail deer hunting conversation. It was the first event of its kind in history."
Dick Idol, September 1983 | North American Whitetail
The Wake County Wildlife Club's Dixie Deer Classic has been recognized nationally as the Premier Trophy Whitetail Deer show in the country. It was the first successful show of it's kind, and lit the spark that has brush fired into similar shows all across the nation. All available exhibit space is used to maximum advantage while keeping large aisle spacing for crowd movement. The show is held annually the 9th weekend of the year, usually the first weekend of March.
The Dixie Deer Classic is held at the spacious North Carolina State Fairgrounds in the Jim Graham Building, J.S. Dorton Arena, The Exposition Center, and Kerr Scott Building. Located in the center of the thriving Research Triangle Area of Central North Carolina, the Fairgrounds are within easy driving distance for more than a million people. There is a restaurant within the Jim Graham Building, and snack bars in Dorton Arena and the Expositon Center. In addition, snacks are sold at various locations throughout the show. No pets are permitted into the show, and no smoking is allowed in the buildings. Weapons are not permitted, and the consumption of alcoholic beverages is forbidden on the premises.
The Dixie Deer Classic is a FAMILY-oriented event, and we try to offer something for everyone. Ticket prices for Friday-Sunday are $15. All young under 13 have always been admitted free of charge and for the youth aged 13-18, the military, women, and seniors, we offer a ticket price of $10 for Friday only . There will be special programs all weekend for the young or beginning hunter, and fun stuff too, like face painting, BB gun Turkey Shoot, Archery Alley, Retriever Demos, and the NC State Turkey Calling Contest. By the way, those half-price tickets are available on Friday for all females, service members, and senior citizens (get your hand-stampled and come back all weekend).
BUILDING ONE is the Jim Graham Building, and is referred to as "The Main Hall" by most folks. This 95,000 square foot building is primarily all exhibitors We did find room for the Kids BB Gun Turkey Shoot, and there are two classrooms in the front of the building that host various seminars. The southeast corner of the building is referred to as TURKEY CORNER, the the NC Chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation which will be found there along with the Call Maker's Competition and the Kids Turkey Calling School. There is a restaurant just off the lobby of this building.
BUILDING TWO is J.S. Dorton Arena; the arena floor is approximately 25,000 square feet and houses our GUN SALES VENUE where local gun dealers display their wares. Also at the west end is an area we call OUTDOOR LORE. There you will find educational displays and some mini-seminars. In addition, on the north side of the area is our Main Stage, where our celebrities make their presentations.
Map of NC State Fairgrounds
BUILDING THREE is the Exposition Center. This 50,000 square foot building is where you find the DEER HEAD SCORING and BRAGGING BOARDS. Also, you find the celebrities exhibit space along with other exhibitors.
BUILDING FOUR is the Kerr Scott Building. This 20,000 square foot building will be an integral part of the show, but admission is not controlled. On Friday it will host the Conservation Through Education Program for school children. You can find our more information about this program under that heading. This building will also host the NC Bowhunters Annual Convention Banquet on Saturday evening. During the day, the 3D Archery Shoot will be conducted there. Don't worry about the distance between buildings, there will be a TRAM operating to take you anywhere on the NC State Fairgrounds.
BUILDING FIVE is not a building at all. It is what we call the outside areas within our compound. Here you will find numerous exhibitors, mostly with products too large to easily display indoors. But in the yard beside Dorton Arena you will find a tented venue where the RETREIVER DEMONSTRATIONS are held.
Since the beginning, the Dixie Deer Classic has brought in nationally known speakers and/or entertainters for the enjoyment and education of our attending clientele. We have enjoyed the hunting tales of Fred Bear, Chuck Adams, John Wooters, Dick Idol, Myles Keller, Roger Raglan, Brenda Valentine, Ted Nugent, Mark Drury, Harold Knight, David Hale and Phil Robertson. We have been amaded by John Munden and Byron Ferguson, Frank Addington, and Maggie McGee. We've also admired all the great whitetail trophies that have visited the show; The Jordan buck, Desi Buck, Hole-In-Horn-Buck, Hanson Buck, Beatty Buck, Zaft Buck, and many others in the traveling collections that have visited the show throughout the years. Please contact us to get specifics aobut our upcoming stage presentation.
Deer head trophies are scored for the North Carolina Record book that is maintained by the Wake County Wildlife Club. Scoring of one trophy is free with admission and plaues are given to the best trophy entered in ten different categories. (No monetary awards are given.) Trophies must be entered prior to 6 PM on Saturday to be eligible for the contest, but scoring will continue until 2 PM on Sunday. Official Boone & Crockett and Pople & Young scorers will be on hand to assist anyone with qualifying trophies in the process of getting their trophy registered for the national record books. Trophies MUST BE PRESENT to win any awards.
Admission is $15.00 per person for the entire weekend. Just get your hand stamped on the way out and come back the next day. (Don't forget about tickets available on Friday for youth 13-18, military, women and seniors).