...and this Rock Chuck's health is apparently in jeopardy due to my weight being well over the average for rock chucks.

Yes, Bliss is a real town about 40 miles from here, named for the founder Frank Bliss. It used to be a tiny truck stop town before the freeway bypassed it. Now it's a minuscule town with lots of ugly abandoned buildings. I've posted the rules at the end of the article. Very simple and common sense. For those of you who don't know what a rock chuck is, it's a yellow bellied marmot, a smaller cousin of the eastern wood chuck. They're more than abundant here and can be a major pest on farms. See my avatar for a low quality photo.

BLISS — A good time in Bliss is planned this weekend — for everyone but the rock chucks.
The Hannah Bates Rock Chuck Derby kicks off its fourth year on Thursday night at the Outlaws and Angels Saloon, and continues through Sunday.
Sportsmen of all ages are invited to participate in the “chuck” hunt, raffles, motorcycle poker run and a walk/run event. The Miss Rock Chuck contest for the ladies will include a Friday and Saturday shoot-off, Saturday coronation and Sunday fundraising auction.
The goal of the derby is for hunters to track down and shoot the world’s biggest rock chuck, and bring it in to be weighed by judges. The winner will be announced on Sunday and will receive a gun as a prize.
Event committee member Bret Silver said the three-day event attracted close to 400 people last year and raised about $50,000. Of that, more than $36,000 was donated to area school athletic teams and nonprofits.
Over the past three years, the Rock Chuck Derby has raised more than $100,000 to donate to schools and families in honor of Hannah Bates, who died in 2008 after a battle with cancer.
“It’s a pretty fun event,” Silver said. “A lot of people bring their motor homes and trailers and spend the weekend.”
Amy Huddleston may be reached at ahuddlestonmagicvalley.com or 735-3204.

The Rules:
• All Idaho hunting regulations apply, and hunters must have a valid hunting license or hunter education number
• Register before you hunt
• Each hunter must be present to weigh in his or her own rock chuck
• Weighted, wet or frozen rock chucks won’t be accepted this could be difficult because of our lousy weather this spring
• Each hunter may weigh one rock chuck per day, with the heaviest overall catch counted in the standings
• Each hunter must dispose of his or her own rock chuck recipes available online
• No animal weights will be announced; ties determined by coin flip
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TODAY IS THE OLDEST YOU'VE EVER BEEN, YET THE YOUNGEST YOU'LL EVER BE, SO ENJOY THIS DAY WHILE IT LASTS.