Kent Cullum, 61, of Monette went duck hunting for the first time on the St. Francis River with his father when he was six or seven-years-old. The lasting memory set him on a trajectory to the duck calling world championships.
“The sun was shining and there were probably 150 ducks working, half came in and the other half were still working. There’s nothing more beautiful,” Cullum said. “I was hooked for life.”
He added his dad wasn’t the best caller in the world, but his best friend, a farmer named Mr. Crump, was really great. “The first time we went hunting with Mr. Crump I noticed he was the only one calling, and I asked my dad why. He said when you’re better than Mr. Crump he’ll ask you to call; until then he will do the calling.”
He said in that moment he decided he wanted “to be able to work a duck better than a duck.” He wanted Mr. Crump to ask him to call. He bought every duck-calling record he could get his hands on.
“You know ducks are kind of like people. There are altos, sopranos, and bass. There are course hens, fine hens, and lazy hens. There is also live duck calling, meat calling, and competition calling. Each are different. ”
As great as the records were, Cullum said it still wasn’t quite perfect, so he found the perfect teacher. He talked his dad into buying baby ducks. So, Cullum fed the ducks, loved the ducks and ran all over with the ducks learning how to speak their language.
He said around 2009 one of his friends talked him into entering a duck calling contest at Stuttgart. The rest is history. He took home nine world titles and many other various titles in different competitions over the years. He also started his own line of duck calls called HOBO duck calls, which stands for Helping Other Brothers Out.
Cullum will teach a course called Master Duck Calling from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Thursdays, beginning October 12 running through November 9, on the BRTC Paragould campus. The five-week course will include Cullum teaching four quacks, three hail calls, three feed calls, all cadences, turning calls, reading ducks, and contest calling.
To enroll in the class or learn more about Community Education at BRTC, contact Patti Blaxton or Samantha Mitchell at (870) 248-4180 or firstname.lastname@example.org.