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Finders Keepers

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  1. Check out the initial run here: https://www.facebook.com/545253593/videos/pcb.10160558045033594/379349940391995 I will upload the entire adventure to my YouTube channel when I get some time to upload it all.
  2. Most of the time, although I did get tired a couple times and had to take a brief break (when I captured video and pics). I also had the capt. take over in the beginning to show me how much pressure to put on the rod/line as I have never used such heavy fishing gear before. It was such an adrenaline rush, especially the first time it came across the back of the boat so we could see it - amazing!!
  3. It was interesting to talk with the locals there, as well as the guy who processes the fish (one of the guys from the show). The price per lb is actually figured out when the fish is sold in the market, not at the time it is taken (like on the show). Prices can be higher for smaller higher quality fish, but they tend to be exaggerated on the show. This one will likely price out around $8/lb according to the current market and what the capt. expected to receive.
  4. It was a free trip for me to go out with them, so it went to the capt. However, I was able to keep the cut they used to grade it and the tail section that we were able to slice around 10 more cuts off of and I will be able to make a tail mount with it. It was a trip of a lifetime and and PB that will be hard to beat! More importantly though I have made some amazing friends in that fishery to share more experiences with both here and up there in the future!
  5. Had the amazing opportunity this past weekend to travel to Maine to target shark and bluefin tuna. I was invited by one of my educational charter clients to join him for a day, but then got upgraded to a larger boat with one of his friends who had an extra seat for an overnight trip. In the middle of the night while trying to jig up some squid, we hooked up on the main rod rigged with a live Pogie. For the first 10 minutes it stayed deep without doing much, and we thought we had hooked into a large shark. Then it streaked to the surface and made a massive run! We knew we had a large tuna on at that point and began what would be an almost 2-hr battle until we tail-roped it. Once in the boat it measured 101" and weighed an estimated 650-700 lbs! Back at the dock it became the talk of the town with people coming from all over to see it as we all waited for the market truck to arrive to process the fish and get an official dressed weight - 519 lbs! One of the largest caught this season in that area, a fish of a lifetime! An unbelievable experience!!
  6. The 2021 NYS Summer Classic Fishing Tournament concluded earlier this week with some very close races for the top spots, including the Top Lake Ontario Boat pulling into the lead by only a 1/2" on the last day as they competed for the $1,000 cash bonus award put up by Batavia Downs! Here are the final results of all three events: Small/Inshore Species Event: Largemouth Bass: 1) Andy Cozzolino Jr. - 22.00" 2) Jose Vuittonet - 21.25" 3) David Muir - 21.00" 4) Charles Hodencamp - 21.00" Smallmouth Bass: 1) Kathleen Muir - 21.00" 2) David Muir - 20.50" 3) Michael Hunt - 19.50" 4) Steven Trumpowsky - 19.50" Crappie: 1) Zach Waterman - 16.75" 2) Jason Stevens - 14.50" 3) David Muir - 13.25" 4) Andy Cozzolino Jr. - 12.50" Rock Bass: 1) Jose Vuittonet - 11.50" 2) Jared Raimo - 11.50" 3) Dan White - 11.25" 4) Andy Cozzolino Jr. Panfish: 1) Jared Raimo - 11.00" 2) Jason Stevens - 9.75" 3) Jason Cecce - 9.50" 4) Dan White - 9.50" Yellow Perch: 1) David Muir - 14.00" 2) Kathleen Muir - 13.75" 3) Dan White - 13.25" 4) Ryan Shellman - 13.00" Catfish: 1) Eric Scordo - 32.75" 2) Erik Williams - 32.25" 3) Leah Cavallario - 32.00" 4) Cody Moffitt - 31.00" Large/Offshore Species Event: Salmon: 1) Wayne Culverwell - 40.75" 2) Chris Petrucci - 39.00" 3) Frank Kohlbach - 38.25" 4) Jonathan Perry - 38.00" Lake Trout: 1) Cameron Hasner - 35.00" 2) Sarah Miller - 34.25" 3) Frank Kohlbach - 34.00" 4) Guy Rosenbarker - 32.50" Brown Trout: 1) Frank Kohlbach - 26.75" 2) Brandy Stone - 22.00" 3) TJ Palkovic - 14.25" 4) Andy Cozzolino Jr. - 12.50" Steelhead/Rainbow Trout: 1) Jackson Kruszynski - 31.00" 2) Liam Devries - 27.25" 3) James Kane - 26.50" 4) Brandy Stone - 26.00" Pike/Tiger Musky: 1) Frank Kohlbach - 37.00" 2) Bobby Bulger - 32.50" 3) David Muir - 32.00" 4) Robert White - 28.00" Land Locked Salmon: 1) Brandy Stone - 16.50" 2) None 3) None 4) None Walleye: 1) Bob Rustowicz - 31.25" 2) Cameron Hasner - 31.00" 3) Frank Kohlbach - 31.00" 4) Sarah Miller - 29.00" All 1st Place winners will receive a cash award, trophy, prize package, and free overnight accommodations at Batavia Downs, 2nd and 3rd Place winners will receive a trophy and prize package, and 4th Place winners will receive a $25 FishUSA gift card. Lake Ontario Boat/Team Event: Top-5 Combined Salmon & Trout: 1) Nate Stephenson - 194.50" 2) David Urban - 194.00" 3) Lucas Falkner - 73.25" 4) Liam Devries - 34.00" The 1st Place Boat/Team will receive the $1,000 Cash Bonus Award from Batavia Downs, cash award from the event, crystal trophy, prize package, and overnight accommodations for up to 3 rooms at Batavia Downs. The 2nd Place Team will receive a trophy and prize package, and the 3rd & 4th Place Teams will receive prize packages. The awards ceremony will occur at Batavia Downs Casino on September 18th at 6:30 following the NYS Fall Sportsman Show (10am-3pm) and BBQ dinner banquet (5pm-6:30pm). Anyone can attend the show, banquet (registration required), and awards ceremony including youth/minors where we will have giveaways, raffles, and drawings including the youth gear giveaway where we will be loading up the youth anglers in attendance with new gear to use in the upcoming seasons! This is always the highlight of the evening!! After the awards ceremony is the After Party in the casino for some fun on the slots machines and often live entertainment. If you missed this year's event, the show and awards can give you an idea of where these events are building towards, and the next generation of tournament events. Aspects of next year's events (2022 NYS Winter Classic, 2022 Oneida Lake Walleye Classic Opener, 2022 NYS Hudson River Classic, 2022 NYS Summer Classic, 2022 Great Lakes Salmon Showdown, and the 2022 Finders Keepers Corporate Challenge Series) will be discussed at the 11am seminar at the show, and improvements to the events will be presented/discussed at the awards ceremony. Unlike other events, the Classic events are driven and improved by angler input to produce fun and exciting tournaments on a fair playing field for all and with 100% transparency. With an 80-85% payout (unlike the 20-25% payout of other similar competitions), the payouts will continue to build towards monumental amounts as more anglers realize the benefits of these events. If you haven't tried the new Classic events utilizing the Fish Donkey platform and C&R option, I highly recommend trying one of the 2022 events next year! There is a reason they have virtually no negative feedback, continued growth, and near 100% angler satisfaction - join the next generation of fishing tournaments and have FUN in 2022!! NYS Winter Classic NYS Hudson River Classic NYS Summer Classic Great Lakes Salmon Showdown Any questions or media inquiries regarding the event, show, and upcoming awards ceremony can be directed to me at (585) 330-0494. Tight lines and best of luck to those still competing in the 2021 GLSS this month!!
  7. More additions to the show: -NYRA Awards (sponsor of the 2021 NYS Summer Classic Trophy Awards) -WNY Partnership for Regional Invasive Species Management -Reel Cool Lures -Kids activity area with games, coloring, and other fun activities. I am also hoping to have some of the new products from Frabill and Plano for the upcoming ice season to check out before you can but them - there are quite a few new items coming out this year that look fantastic! Also, if you have any used or old gear you would like to sell/trade, we are looking to fill the flea market area and are now offering FREE tables - simply register via PM to me to reserve your space! Those who have confirmed already will be refunded their fee. Show timeline: 6am-10am: Set-up 10am-3pm: The Show 3pm-5pm: Tear Down 5-6:30: Classic BBQ Dinner Banquet w/ Giveaways (open to anyone, registration required - opening soon) 6:30-8:30: NYS Summer Classic Awards Ceremony & Raffles (open to anyone) 8:30-??: After Party in the Casino Giveaways at the show and dinner banquet, along with the raffles, will feature limited edition Koyote Ugly products.
  8. This year's educational trips went amazingly well with most trips scoring some bonus fish. Some of the topics we covered and practiced included: -Running 2 divers on a side -Running a multitude of planer lines using large boards and inline boards -Setting up and deploying downriggers -Using waypoints to track fish movement and alter presentations -Advanced downrigging techniques like sliders and cheaters -Importance of probes -Various lines and their applications, including fluoro leaders -Proper hardware -How to set-up and tune meat rigs -How to set-up various spreads using a multitude of various lines -Go to rigs for various species -How to tie your own fly rigs -Proper storage of various tackle And so much more!! Each class is tailored to what you would like to learn/practice. If you would like to shorten that learning curve, I do have some very limited availability this fall, or you can get a jump on next year's dates by stopping into our booth on Sept. 18th at the NYS Fall Classic Sportsman Show at the Batavia Downs Casino. Listening to someone describe how to do something is completely different than doing it yourself on the water! Join me on the water (or I can join you) and class will be in session! Drop me a PM or give me a call at (585) 330-0494 to schedule your class!
  9. Preceding the 2021 NYS Summer Classic Tournament Awards Ceremony, the NYS Fall Classic Sportsman Show is scheduled for Sept. 18th from 10am-3pm at the Batavia Downs Casino Resort. The event this year will feature vendors, seminars, and a new angler flea market for anyone looking to offload or trade some gear. Booth spaces are $25/space and on a first-reserve basis. There are currently 25 spaces available. If interested, drop me a PM or give me a call at (585) 330-0494 to reserve your booth. The show will be followed by the Summer Classic Awards Banquet (all you can eat BBQ buffet, $25-$30/person), formal awards ceremony with raffles and giveaways, and the after party in the casino. I will have displays for Frabill, Plano, Automatic Fisherman, Okuma, Finders Keepers Fishing & Educational Charters, and Aqua-Vu set-up, where you will be able to see some of the latest gear being offered by these companies, including the new Ultra-lite nets from Frabill, array of Edge Flex boxes from Plano, and many of the Aqua-Vu camera systems. Seminars and full list of vendors TBA in August.
  10. **Tourney Update & Announcement** We're halfway through the 2021 NYS Summer Classic Fishing Tournament, here are the current leaders: Small Species Event: Crappie: David Muir - 13.25" SMB: Kathleen Muir - 20.00" LMB: David Muir - 21.00" Rock Bass: Jose Vuittonet - 10.75" Panfish: Jared Raimo - 10.50" Perch: David Muir - 14.00" Catfish: Eric Scordo - 32.75" Large Species Event: Salmon: Frank Kohlbach - 38.25" Brown Trout: Frank Kohlbach - 26.75" Lake Trout: Guy Rosenbarker - 32.50" Walleye: Bob Rustowicz - 31.25" Land-Locked Salmon: Brandy Stone - 16.50" Steelhead/Rainbow Trout: Brandy Stone - 26.00" Pike/Tiger Musky: Frank Kohlbach - 37.00" Lake Ontario Boat Event: David Urban - 181.00" With 4 weeks left, there's lots of time left to get in the game and join the fun!! For those who register through the end of the event, make sure you sign-up the day before you wish to start entering fish: NYSsummerclassic.com Tonight we would like to announce another sponsor award: NYRA Awards in Rochester has sponsored the event with crystal and acrylic awards for the Boat Event (Crystal award for 1st place, acrylic awards for 2nd and 3rd). NYRA will also be attending the Fall Classic Sportsman Show on Sept. 18th at Batavia Downs. Thank you to NYRA for this great addition!
  11. The 2021 NYS Summer Classic is underway! Announced today, all Top-3 anglers in all 14 species divisions will receive premium trophies thanks to a very generous sponsorship from Clingerman's Taxidermy! With an uncapped payout at 80%+ watch the amounts grow as more anglers join in the fun (the 2021 Winter Classic paid out over $10,500 in cash and gave away over $15,000 in prizes)! Youth at any age are encouraged to participate, especially in the Small Species Event where you don't need a boat to target the 7 included species: LMB, SMB, Rock Bass, Crappie, Perch, Panfish, and Catfish. The Classic events have continued to work hard to produce events that not only engage youth anglers, but also promote and work to sustain our fishery. Check out the latest improvements: *Catch and release now available for ALL FISH. *100% of proceeds from apparel sales go towards LIFETIME YOUTH LICENSES. *A portion of the event proceeds at higher participation levels go back into the fishery (stocking programs, pen rearing projects, youth fishing organizations, etc.). *Sportsman Shows that precede the awards ceremony, all held at the Batavia Downs Casino. Thank you to all those who support these efforts. We will strive to continue to develop the next generation of tournament events that are pro-angler, pro-fishery, pro-community, pro-youth-engagement, unbiased and 100% transparent.
  12. Anglers who have taken advantage of this opportunity are coming away with a wealth of knowledge and a much shorter learning curve. Drop me a line today and we can set-up your on-water class tailored to your requests!
  13. The statewide 2021 NYS Summer Classic Tournament kicks off on July 1st and features 3 events this year (enter one or all three): 1) Small Species Event (LMB, SMB, Rock Bass, Perch, Panfish, Crappie, Catfish) - $25/angler entry 2) Large Species Event (Salmon, Lake Trout, Brown Trout, Steelhead/Rainbow Trout, Walleye, Pike/Tiger Musky, Land-Locked Salmon) - $25/angler entry 3) Lake Ontario Boat Event (Best 5 Salmon & Trout) - $125/boat entry (any fish caught on the boat is eligible for entry no matter who catches it) Each event features a guaranteed cash payout (Top-3 for each species) based on the number of entrees (at least 80% with no cap, increases with increasing anglers), and Batavia Downs Casino has put together an awesome sponsorship package including free overnight accommodations for all 14 first place anglers the night of the awards ceremony plus up to 3 rooms for the 1st place boat in the LO Event and a $1,000 cash bonus award for the first place boat in the LO Boat event! Anglers can enter at any time, but must register the day before they wish to start entering fish. All fish are entered in real-time using the Fish Donkey App via length pictures and/or videos. Bump boards are preferred for fish entry, however there is a second alternate protocol to enter fish if you do not have a bump board (see rules and regs for specifics). The awards ceremony will be on Sept. 18th at Batavia Downs after the 2021 NYS Fall Classic Sportsman Show. While youth anglers register and compete alongside the adults, we also reserve a large portion of the sponsored prizes to outfit the participating youth at the awards ceremony - often the highlight of the event!! Bringing the FUN back into tournament fishing, the Classic Events are both easy, secure, and 100% transparent - join today and see why they have a near 100% satisfaction rating among participating anglers and why so many events are switching over to this platform across the country! The next generation of tournament events has begun - are you in yet? Website: NYSSummerClassic.com
  14. If you have any questions let me know! Biggest thing is make sure you take the required photos (4) with a bump board or photos and video with a metal tape measure.
  15. Interested in learning how to fish for trout and salmon or want to learn new tricks of the trade? This Summer (June-Aug) I will be running the first series of Finders Keepers Educational Charters out of Sodus Bay on My Way (34' Amberjack) (or I can come onto your boat to work with your gear). These charters are specifically designed and tailored to educate anglers on the skills they desire to learn. These can include: *Running downriggers *Advanced downrigging techniques (sliders, fixed sliders, stackers, etc.) *Running planer boards (large boards or in-lines) *Running multiple wires on a side *Creating a spread of lines for different scenarios *Reading electronics *Using waypoints to be more productive *Running meat rigs & tuning them correctly *Running flasher/flies and tying up new rigs *Running slide divers vs. standard divers vs. mag divers *How to properly sharpen your hooks *How to enter fish in the tournaments run on the Fish Donkey platform (Great Lakes Salmon Showdown & NYS Summer Classic) And anything else you may want to learn! While the emphasis will be on the educational aspect, we'll also try to put some fish on the deck too! Charters will be available weekday evenings from 5-8pm and weekends from 3-7 or 3-8pm in June, and every day after 3pm through July and August pending availability). If interested, drop me a PM for availability, pricing, and to secure a date. More information can be found at: FKsportfishing.com Let's go fishing!!
  16. The 2021 Event kicks off this weekend! Compete against teams from all across the Great Lakes in this fun 5-month long tournament event! Anglers can register at any time through the event, but must register the day before they wish to start entering fish. Every fish caught aboard a registered boat is eligible for entry making this a fantastic format for charter boats - all of your clients are already in the event with you! Join in the fun this year!
  17. Davenport's is still there too. Better selection of Moonshine, Northern King, and Stinger spoons, and only shop with Koyote Ugly flashers and spoons.
  18. Agreed, there are some events that make arrangements for the catch to be taken by groups, however most are not. Smaller species like bass, perch, walleye, etc. can be kept alive in livewells and therefore can be brought to weigh-in, entered in, then released. Trout and salmon however can not be. Any kept for a tourney will perish. In any tourney event there will be positives and negatives, for those run on the Fish Donkey platform there are little to no negatives - the reason why I (and many others) have switched all of the events we run onto this platform. These are the next generation of tourney events...
  19. It's no different than weight, just a different method of measurement. And if there happens to be a tie in total length of the Top-5 fish, then yes the first one to that total length wins, same as any similar tourney done by weight. Best thing about these events, however, is that all the fish can be released unlike all the weight-placing kill events. The platform these events are running on is far superior IMO, it just takes a little getting used to the new format. I have yet to have anyone not like the format once they have fished an event on it - speaks volumes when there are 100's of anglers fishing the other Classic events I run...
  20. until
    The statewide 2021 NYS Summer Classic will feature 3 events in one: 1) Small Species Event: (Largemouth Bass, Smallmouth Bass, Rock Bass, Crappie, Yellow Perch, Panfish, and Catfish) Entry Fee: $25/angler Fish Entry: Top-3 of each species place via length using the fish Donkey App Waterways: All NYS waterways 2) Large Species Event: (Salmon, Lake Trout, Brown Trout, Steelhead/Rainbow Trout, Walleye, Pike/Tiger Musky, and Landlocked Salmon) Entry Fee: $25/angler Fish Entry: Top-3 of each species place via length using the Fish Donkey App Waterways: All NYS waterways 3) Lake Ontario Boat Event: (Salmon & Trout) Entry Fee: $125/boat Fish Entry: Top-5 Fish Stringer via length using the Fish Donkey App Waterway: Open waters of Lake Ontario Visit the following websites for full tourney info: FishDonkey.com NYSsummerclassic.com
  21. until
    For the GLSS events anglers register by boat. Any fish caught on a registered boat can be entered regardless of who caught the fish; the captain, the mates, clients, friends, family, and anyone else fishing aboard the vessel! The events are open to both the US and Canada. There are two levels of competition: Pro Division and Am Division. The only differences between the two levels are the entry fee (Pro Division = $250/boat, Am Division = $125/boat) and stipulations that require a boat to be in the Pro Division: operated by a capt. or guide, and/or if the boat is sponsored by one or more fishing related companies. All fish entrees are made using the Fish Donkey App on the captain's (or other designated) cell phone at the time of the catch. Measurements are made to the nearest 1/4" rounded down. When a fish is caught simply take the following 4 required pictures that are automatically uploaded to the App: 1) picture of the fish on the bump board showing both the nose of the fish against the front, zero end of the bump board and the tip of the tail indicating the measurement, 2) a close-up of the fish's head (for ID purposes), 3) a close-up of the tail showing the measurement (also for ID purposes), and 4) a picture of the fish and angler who caught it (can be a selfie if fishing alone) that also includes an identifiable part of the registered boat. Online leaderboards are updated in real time so anglers can see who is leading at any moment during the event. Anglers can also submit as many fish as they want too upsize their catch - the App will automatically take their Top-5 for placement. For those in other events, there is an "Other Tourney Protocol" to follow (see Rules and Regs on Fish Donkey) to allow for entering fish in both events. After the events conclude on September 30th, checks will be mailed out to the winners. Winners of sponsored physical items will need to make arrangements for pick-up or shipping if not included in the prize. For more information visit the event website at: GLSSevents.com
  22. After running a full year testing out the Fish Donkey online tournament platform with the NYS Classic events with great success and receiving 100% positive remarks from the anglers who participated, the 2021 Great Lakes Salmon Showdown will be opening up all of the Great Lakes to compete in one monumental event that runs from May 1st through Sept. 30th. Registration is by boat ($250/boat for the Pro Division, $125/boat for the Am Division) - once registered, any salmon caught on the boat (regardless of who caught it) is eligible for entry via the Fish Donkey App. This includes charter clients for a registered charter boat. Fish are entered at the time of the catch and place via length. Pictures and/or videos verify the catch and measurement with the date/time/GPS Coords all encoded into the pics/video. The leaderboards are updated in real time and all participants are notified when a new leader is entered. Full rules and regs and other tourney information can be found within the event at FishDonkey.com (Pro) or FishDonkey.com (Am). There are many benefits to this style of tournament: 1) All fish can be released after entry (angler's choice). 2) Anglers can fish solo. 3) No extra travel necessary to bring fish to a weigh-in station. 4) No set hours - anglers can fish 24/7 and take advantage of the evening bite. 5) Event is open to both US and Canadian anglers for larger prize pools. 6) The event is 100% transparent - the number of anglers, the resulting payouts, percentages paid, sponsored prizes, etc. are all laid out for all to see. 7) The protocols along with the checks in the App offer very little opportunity for foul play. 8 ) All anglers are treated equal with no favoritism. Denied fish are publicly seen in the app (as all fish are) along with the reason why, disputes are sent to the tourney committee (5 members) for review and a final decision made. 9) The fish entry process is very quick and easy (less than a minute), especially with two people for larger fish. 10) Leaderboards update automatically in real time. We will be working to secure sponsors for the event over the next couple months as new contracts are finalized and Covid restrictions are modified. Current sponsors include: Plano, Frabill, Okuma, Koyote Ugly Spoons, FishUSA, Reel Cool Lures, and Omnia Fishing. Tourney Details: When: May 1st - September 30th Registration: Pro Division - $250/boat Am Division - $125/boat Location: Any open waters on the Great Lakes, both US and Canadian. Fish Entry: Length via Fish Donkey App Fish Placement: Stringer Total of Best-5 Salmon (boats can upsize all season long) Cash Awards: 80-85% Payback + Sponsor Prizes (checks mailed at end of event, prizes shipped)(number of places & amounts paid determined by number of boats entered, in US funds) Website: GLSSEvents.com Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Great-Lakes-Salmon-Showdown-Tournaments-111757507172599 Boats can be registered at any time, even after the event starts, but cannot start entering fish until the day after registration. If you have any questions, please drop me a PM. Best of luck to all the teams this year and tight lines!!
  23. Update for cash payouts in all 7 species divisions: 1st Place = $600 2nd Place = $330 3rd Place = $220 4th Place = $25 FishUSA GC + $25 Batavia Downs FPC PLUS $46/week for leading fish in all 7 divisions all 8 weeks. *NEW AWARD FOR FEBRUARY* Place in the Top-10 of any species any time in February and include a release video with the fish entry to be entered into a drawing for a Bow Fishing Excursion with Fish Hounds Outdoors and Capt. James Vladyka for up to 3 shooters!! Still over 4 weeks of tourney action to be had in this year's event - join in the fun with over 580 other anglers this winter!! If we can reach 615 anglers we will be adding Bass as a new species with a new Aqua-Vu HD 10i Pro Camera System valued at $999!! Register today for only $25 at: www.NYSwinterclassic.com
  24. Update for cash payouts in all 7 species divisions: 1st Place = $540 2nd Place = $292 3rd Place = $195 4th Place = $25 FishUSA GC + $25 Batavia Downs FPC PLUS $41/week for leading fish in all 7 divisions all 8 weeks. Next set of prize drawings: January 31st at 7pm Live on the tourney Facebook page, anglers must be registered by noon on the 31st to be eligible. Only $25/angler to sign-up. NOTE: Anglers must register the day before they wish to start entering fish. www.NYSwinterclassic.com
  25. Update for cash payouts in all 7 species divisions: 1st Place = $468 2nd Place = $250 3rd Place = $167 4th Place = $25 FishUSA GC + $25 Batavia Downs FPC PLUS $35/week for leading fish in all 7 divisions all 8 weeks. Next set of prize drawings: January 31st at 7pm Live on the tourney Facebook page, anglers must be registered by noon on the 31st to be eligible.
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