Once in a lifetime, twice in a row
By Daniel Arens
Before the official competition begins in “The Hunger Games,” contestants are wished good luck with the words: “May the odds be ever in your favor.” The odds have certainly been favorable for one Hazen resident.
Each year, Bill Wagner (along with hundreds of other North Dakota residents) signs up for the chance to get a license and hunt one of the three “exotics” of the state: elk, moose, and bighorn sheep. Only a handful of residents have the opportunity to get any of these limited licenses, which are selected by a lottery each year. Also, you only have one chance to be selected for each animal. For example, if you get an elk license, that is your only opportunity to go elk hunting in the state. Even if you don’t get your animal, you can’t reapply for that particular category again.
In 2016, Wagner was able to get the coveted elk hunting license, and successfully got his elk as well. One year later, he reapplied for the other two animals, and to his surprise, he was selected for the moose hunting license.