Nevis Scholarship Fund tourney Sept. 11
Only three weeks until the 15th annual Nevis Scholarship Fund Jr. Fishing Tournament on Lake Belle Taine.
The event is a favorite for me, even though I've never had the chance to participate as a competitor.
The format is unique; in fact, there may not be another fishing tournament in the state that compares with this layout.
The teams are intermediate anglers looking to branch out from shore and pier sanctioned events. They fish from boats, with no adults on-board, hoping to land bass, northern and walleye.
The competition takes place Sunday, Sept. 11, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Lake Belle Taine public access.
Two person teams (one who must be twelve years old or more) will battle for a $200 first prize with a five place payout.
Entry fee is $35 for a two-member team with proceeds benefiting Nevis Dollars for Scholars.
Dollars for Scholars funds go into an account, the interest gathered over the year granted to graduating Nevis High School seniors proceeding to post-secondary education. Money is dispersed in the second semester of school and can only be utilized for books or tuition.
Yet most of the anglers forget about the charity and simply focus upon the fishing for the day.
Entry forms are situated on counters at bait shops, boats dealers and gas stations throughout the area.
Additional information can be gathered from Alex Magaard, tournament director, at 218-252-0240. Anyone interested in donating to the fundraiser should also call.
Even if contestants don't have the greatest day on the water, they each go home with much more than their entry fees; the door prizes following the awards ceremony are highly impressive.
Rods, reels, fishing lures and an array of high quality outdoor related items greet the anglers as they head to shore.
Contestants are asked to launch boats before the pre-tournament meeting at 8:45 a.m.
Team take-off numbers are drawn two at a time as the boats rest on the shoreline, the operators running toward their watercraft, pushing off and driving to their hotspot. Plenty of time is given between flights to ensure safety.
The Park Rapids Bass Club will patrol Lake Belle Taine to enforce the rules, primarily the requirement that all must wear a personal flotation device at all times.
However, club members are also available to assist with a malfunctioning motor and offer angling advice if needed. Club members also taxi fish from the angler boats to the weigh-in station at the Lake Belle Taine public access to allow participants to continue fishing.
A pontoon boat will idle among the anglers with a grill on board, cooking hotdogs and delivering them along with cold sodas to the anglers as they fish.
At the end of the day, one team will have their name adorned on the Conset Cup, a trophy named after a historic Lake Belle Taine island, alongside the previous fourteen champions.
Final weigh-in will be at 3 p.m. at the Lake Belle Taine access with the public invited to attend.