Hogs creating safety concern at Sugar Land church

SUGAR LAND, Texas - A Sugar Land church says wild hogs are literally taking a bite out of the church's profits.

The Holy Cross Episcopal Church sits on a few acres of property making it the perfect location for Fort Bend County's largest pumpkin patch. But church officials are worried wild hogs will ruin their biggest fundraiser of the year.

"We don't want them coming up at night destroying pumpkins destroying everything else," Jimmie Wilson, co-chairman of the pumpkin patch committee, said.

Thousands of pumpkins are shipped in from New Mexico each year to be used in the pumpkin patch. This year the pumpkin patch will be open the last three weekends of October. Those pumpkins are expected to arrive at the church property in about a week, which could potentially be a tasty buffet for wild hogs nearby.

"We need to have it taken care of before then, like next week," he said.

Wilson said the fundraiser typically raises anywhere from $35,000-$45,000 each year, which funds many programs.

"Several ministries we run will be affected if this doesn't go off like it has done every year," he explained.  "It is a safety risk and we feel the city should do something about it."

Wilson said the property where the church sits was annexed into the Sugar Land city limits last year. He asked city officials if church members could use crossbows to help combat the hog problem. Sugar Land city spokesperson Doug Adolph said there's an ordinance that prohibits using a crossbow in the city limits.

Adolph said the city has placed traps near the church's property and they are catching hogs, but not at the rate church officials would like. He suggests the church add flood lights and a fence to help keep hogs off the property.

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