Fishing Forever/Family Fishing Weekend June 17-18, 2017
Again this Fathers’ Day Weekend the Nelson District Rod & Gun Club hosted successful and rewarding twin events at the Regional District of Central Kootenay’s Cottonwood Lake Park. The weather was reasonably cooperative, with only a few raindrops on Saturday. The sun occasionally broke through to make the days comfortable.
Saturday for Fishing Forever a busload came from Nelson Jubilee Manor (thanks Rose and staff) and another from Mountain Lake Seniors Community (thanks Sandra and staff) to join a van load from Kootenay Society for Community Living in Castlegar (thanks Ursula and staff) with a number of family members as well as various local individuals. We did get 82 registered for the day with some of them getting out on the lake (including a lady 99 years old) and others simply enjoying the campfire, the beautiful setting, and lunch. Our ‘clients’ received commemorative T shirts. An osprey entertained while demonstrating its unique fishing technique. Fifteen terrific volunteers made it all possible; Holly came from Surrey for the occasion and spent two days working in the kitchen! Other helpers included Frances, Glen, Lorne, Brad, Darcy, Calvin, Teresa, Marvin, Alan, Ann, John, Wally, Derek, Gary, Heather, Bev, and Steve.
Sunday Family Fishing saw 217 registered, with only fair success with the fishing. However, the flow was steady and there were only a few delays in getting on the water. The occasion was augmented by an educational booth with Natasha Olsoff from Central Kootenay Invasive Species. Several additional volunteers helped out on this day. Approximately 160 people were treated to a boat ride and/or fishing during about 50 forays. Hard working boat captains! The kitchen was exceedingly busy providing lunch to all who registered. Kids who caught a fish were given a rod & reel set as in past years.
Heartfelt thanks to those who volunteered to assist and to those who brought boats for our use. Many hours were spent receiving registrations, taking out boatloads, rigging tackle, operating the kitchen, and setting up/cleaning up. Numerous folks made a point of offering their thanks for the club’s efforts in making this a highlight day in our community.
Donations are gratefully acknowledged from Family Fishing Society (cash and fishing gear), Andex (washing station), Conservation Officers Ben Beetlestone (bait) and Jason Hawkes (sundry handouts), Gerry Vliet (door prizes for youngsters), BC Wildlife Federation (T shirts), Penticton Signs (red volunteer T shirts), Glen McKen (firewood), Western Auto (spare batteries), as well as the province (which allows fishing without a licence on this weekend) and Freshwater Fisheries Society for stocking the lake as directed by senior biologist Jeff Burrows. In particular I wish to acknowledge and thank A & W Restaurants (Nelson) for providing the burgers and buns to feed over 300 people!
I hope to share my favourite event with you next Fathers’ Day Weekend at Cottonwood Lake! Mark your calendars now!