A Hometown Point of View: Fishing Tournaments by Kelly Gee

Archived in the category: Fishing Reports, General Info
Posted by Joyce Rhyne on 14 Aug 14 - 0 Comments

Fishing Tournaments are big in Port O Connor. They happen all year long. Some are large, with cash awards and side pots; some are smaller with prizes and photo awards, but all bring visitors and their business to our community. Anglers and their crew need fuel and supplies; families, guests and spectators need food, refreshment and fun. Some tournaments are organized by special interest groups or professional clubs and associations and a few are for charity. Men, women, teens and children fish in tournaments at professional, amateur and beginner levels.

It seems like the month of July is a tournament marathon with the big Poco Bueno, the Lonestar Shootout, Readin’, ‘Ritin’ and ‘Reelin’ Tournament the return of the Sharp Tooth Shootout and others all occurring right together. Even with the weather cancellation of the offshore portion of Poco Bueno, there have been lots of fishing fanatics and fans in our area this month. They are a boost to our economy and an addition to our fishing lore and legend.

What you may not know is what some local volunteers bring to tournament month. Many tournament caught fish would go to waste without these hometown helpers. From the start of fishing hours to well after the tournament weigh in closes down, local guys and gals are on call to pick up fish donated by anglers to provide food for needy and disadvantaged.

They may be called out to meet a fisherman at 2 AM or even hours after the tournament closes. They go to the marina, dock or boat slip and pick up the donated fish, ice it, clean and prepare it, then freeze it for freshness. Fisherman’s Chapel members and partners cleaned, prepped and distributed more than 6000 servings of fresh fish from tournament donated fish last year. Many of those portions were shared with the food pantry program at Christian Temple Church in Southeast Houston while the rest was allocated for POC and area families and individuals in need. This year the catch was greatly diminished by the offshore cancellation, but cleaners and gleaners still cleaned, prepped and stored more than 650 portions that will be used to meet needs locally. Many thanks to all who helped and special appreciation to Erny McDonough, Zach Schneider, Julian Garcia, David Walker, Dennis, John, Pat, Mike, James, Shawna, Derrick for their hard work.

POC’s pantry program is community wide, supported by local churches, businesses and individuals; and is available to any person in need of food for sustenance and health. There is no qualification or exclusion for assistance. If needs are real, help is available. The community food pantry is housed at Fisherman’s Chapel. If you would like to support the ongoing outreach of the food pantry, donations of non-perishable foodstuffs can be left at the POC Hardware Store or Fisherman’s Chapel. This same group collects for and distributes holiday food boxes in November and December. Many in our community and surrounding area have suffered in the changing economy and difficult job market, and their needs for assistance are very real. The pantry makes a difference in tough times, and the fish shared by tournament anglers is a much appreciated part of that help.

David Walker with anglers at the Sharp Tooth Shootout

Zach Schneider hauls away a fish to be cleaned for the pantry.

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