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Finders Keepers

Pro-Am Tournaments in 2013

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Vince, As we are all aware there has been some recent activity on this subject and as I mentioned previously there WILL BE and event out of Sodus Point on the traditional weekend of the Sodus Pro Am. Year 2013 will be July 20 and 21. We are waiting for official word to determine if the Sodus Pro Am will or will not take place. For some reason response is coming slow. Should the existing Pro Am continue so be it, Dates are locked in. Should the Sodus pro Am disolve then YES there will be an event in Sodus Point that weekend and we (Warrens Hook line & Sinker) will be a big part of it. We are concentrating on some big tournaments for ice fishing at the moment but will be announcing our plans for our open water tournaments as soon as we can. One thing you can count on there will be a tournament out of Sodus point on the weekend of July 20 and 21, 2013. Plan on coming to Sodus that week end!!!!!!!!!!! It will definately be worth while. We have 32 team names in front of us at this time waiting for announcement. Stay tuned for details!!!!!

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Thank you for the update, and good call! Perhaps the best move would be to collaborate. The best from the past, with whomever wants to be a part of it, and some new necessary changes/additions. Smart move locking in the date.

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.Vince I hear Dex might make an appearance along with nick... wouldn't be right without their leader being there..

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I don't know if i could handle a full day of Casey.

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Ok here it is, latest update:

At this time there is NO Wayne County Pro Am planned for the year 2013.

As previously mentioned and after discussing with appropriate personal, we (Warren's Hook Line & Sinker) WILL BE organizing a tournament for that weekend. July 20 & 21, 2013. Plans are in the early stages. Details will be announced as soon as we get it all put together. Plan on being in Sodus at least Friday July 19, Saturday July 20 and Sunday July 21.

We are putting together a first class high dollar (Should I say BIG payout) tournament that is going to be appealing to "EVERYONE" I know that is an impossible task but we will do the best that we can to meet that goal. we have barely scratched the surface on the format but just a taste of what we are planning will be a guranteed $10,000.00 for first place with a field of at least 50 teams. This is Sodus Point, if we can not get 50 teams to come here and battle it it for $10,000.00, well that isn't going to happen so we'll plan on that. We're hoping to make that number larger but we'll deal with that as the planning moves ahead. There will be a lot more incentives thrown in that will be mentioned as they are fine tuned.

Stay tuned for updates.

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Good for you! At least someone is stepping up to the plate.

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May have a conflict if the players from the Atomik Invitational last year vote for that weekend for Tom's Tournament!!!!!!!!

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Good deal Troy. You can count on the "Green Dolphin II" or whatever we name the new boat to attend. I hope you also put together a September "derby" like we talked about last September!

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May have a conflict if the players from the Atomik Invitational last year vote for that weekend for Tom's Tournament!!!!!!!!

I'm sure Tom will pipe-in here, and that he will take this into consideration! 8)

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I think Tom and Warren's should piggy back off each other for an East end series. Tom can grab the dates from the old Oswego Pro Am, and Warrens can take the dates from Sodus.

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Scuttlebutt I heard Rick was Burke and Rob were maybe going to run an Oswego tournament. And if they are I'm more than willing to jump in and help!!!!

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Scuttlebutt I heard Rick was Burke and Rob were maybe going to run an Oswego tournament. And if they are I'm more than willing to jump in and help!!!!

Last I heard they didn't have the time to put towards it Greg.

Unless it goes back to the old format it's a dead event, and even that might not help. What's proving itself are the shootout/Salmon only events. If someone would step up in Oswego, Warren's obviously is stepping up in Sodus, and we combine those with the Wilson Harbor Invitational we could have a series right there. Then the Pro Ams could just go away.

Let's be honest here. No one wants to fish for Trout in these events. Imagine Sodus being Salmon only. How many boats might make the trip offshore to look for those Kings coming down the Lake? It turns it into a whole new event.

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Thanks for the info Rick. I have to admit the Salmon only Tournaments are fun.We'll see what develops.

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Sodus will be a salmon only tournament. As far as the dates go and possible conflicts I think we are good due to previous communications with other tournament committies.

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Sounds good troy glad to see a tournament staying in sodus. By far my favorite event each year.

Rick- although salmon fishing is top dog, a 12 fish 2 day event is still exciting and shows a good all around fisherman. I think most players would continue to support that style as long as the rules would reflect what the majority want.

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I like the 2 day format also. There are enough 1 day shootouts. However, No Communication is a must, and I'd rather see Salmon only.

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Salmon only tournamnents are good.

Untill you have a couple of seasons when there are no or very few Salmon in the area to chase. ;(

Then you are talking burning a whole lotta fuel.....Ouch.

Glen

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Although i'd like to try a 12 salmon tournament i have a feeling you'd lose potential players because of the high catch limit. And boy could i see the possibility long runs involved.

I do agree with glen that some tournaments would be quite poor if it were salmon only. which is why i love the pro/ams...set up for salmon then go after your steelies or browns if you can't get your box, just have to know when to switch over, I know i have learned a lot and have grown immensely as a fisherman because of the demands of the 12 fish box.

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It's very sad to see the pro/ams dwindle away and see that tournament style kind of become a thing of the past, i do believe it had a lot to do with the multiple rule changes and the mistreatment of the amateur division.

In the Pro Division it has been evident over the past few years that you have your usual players that will be at the tournaments no matter what then you have teams that competed occasionally or are local to that port. Yes we lost some teams that were always there but mostly we lost the part timers. I feel the open communication rule left a bad taste in their mouth and pushed them away slowly as they saw teams that were connected at the top and heard the rumors of teams getting called to the fish. Although not every team communicates such as Vinny and company, 80% of the teams that are gone would say the number one reason why they are no longer competing is that one simple rule.

In the Amateur division the numbers were down dramatically then they use to be but they still had 20 teams or so competing. The new rules forced them into competition with the pros and guess what 2 or 3 teams decided to give it a try and it was only for a tourney or two. So ya maybe the amateur division had dwindled down but that’s 20 teams lost at each event and lost of revenue for the each town. When I was fishing in the amateur division it wasn’t about the money it was about the competition and to help grow as a tournament angler. So ya maybe the pay out wasn’t the best for the am’s but I bet the majority would say they would have fished last year if there was an am division…why, because they love the competition and the camaraderie.

Top all that with the fact that the tournament doesn’t communicate well with its fellow anglers and let them know in reasonable amount of time when the tournaments are going to be (which is now before the holidays so we can put in for vacation) and you can see why its dwindled and failed. One could argue that they are always the same time each year but new teams don’t know that and without putting information out how are new teams going to get informed and interested.

If they went back to the original rules multiple division, listened to the competitors and told everyone well ahead of schedule what weekend each tournament will be I’d bet money you’d see a slow rise in the teams. It’s not going to happen right off because they first need to gain everyone’s trust and after a year or two of keeping to the rules and seeing teams being excited again I bet by year three pro numbers would be in the 40’s or better and ams would be in the 30’s if not higher. There’s obviously financial support as the website states clearly that over $170,000 was dished out this past year. So there’s no reason things can’t improve.

ok that’s the end of my rant lol

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Matt pretty much summed it up.

Dont get me wrong Salmon only tournaments are very attractive. But they will never show who the BEST are. It takes different skill sets for the various fish we persue. Heck it takes a skill set to fish each individual tournament setup. 12 fish 2 day events show that a team has those skill sets to catch there fish. I have enjoyed the 1 day shootout events as much as any pro am however there is a certain amount of luck that needs to happen to win one. The killer for the pro am has always been and always will be the COMMUNICATION rule. One other thing I believe the countys lost sight of was participation. I said all last year as part of the pro am commitee and was pretty much ignored... I would rather see 70 boats at 500.00 dollar entry or even 450.00 for that matter then 30 at 650.00 or 800.00. These tournys are about participation and bringing dollars to the ports that are the host. We seemed to have lost sight of all that. NONE of us are going to get rich winning one 20,000 dollar pot. Nobody is going to make a living fishing these tourneys. It is a simple fact with our fishery right now. Sure we all would like to have an opportunity at being a "PRO" fisherman but the fact remains the economy is not going to support that right now.

By the way I am not begruging any tournament series or any one one tournament. Just trying to paint a picture between tournament structures and participation. It takes a GIANT effort to pull off a quality tourny!

Ok I will get off my band wagon now and prepare to take my lumps!

Brian

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No lumps for you Brian, you speak from the heart. Yes it is tragic to have lost the prestige of the multi species, 2 day Pro-Am tournaments and series. This wouldn't even be a discussion had the rules not been changed. You all know how one bad move can set a series of bad things in place. Yeah, you forget to keep air in the tires, so one of them blows out and the car gets totaled. At that point a tire looks like a cheap fix, but it's too late because the cars a complete loss.

Hopefully all events going forward, no matter if one or two days, no matter what format, will heed the message and be closed comm.

There is a simple fix if a fair, 12 fish Salmon only tournament was the goal without further enriching the oil companies. A boundry or grid(yes a large one) limiting where the "game would be played" would make sense. If it's a multi species event this would take away too much of the strategy, but if Salmon only it would prevent a "runfest" and be safer too with various sized boats involved. Just food for thought.

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My friend Bill Heller and I have fished Lake Ontario since 1985. We fished the ESLO, Pro- Ams, and just about any other tournament that was offered. We started out as Team Outcast, then Trophy Teasers, and more recently as Dodger/Outcast with Jim Skolny. The Pro-Ams were best back in the beginning, when they were only held in Niagara County. We fished in the late 80's and early 90's and even though we didn't fare well back then, we always had a great time. The Pro-am started to go down hill when the rules started to get changed almost ever year. We never knew exactly what kind of Tournament we would be getting into. Last year was the final straw for us, when the Amature division was all but eliminated. Here are some of the rules we liked. We would hope that some of these suggestions might be considered. Thanks

1)Closed communication. (Prevented large groups from stacking the odds)

2)Mandatory observers. (Prevents cheating)

3)Same fishing time for Pros and Amatures. (With staggered starting times for safety)

4)Two Divisions. (Three with Open division)

5)Eliminate set time for being back to pier head. (Caused unsafe rush to port) Just set a time to be in line for weigh-in.

6)Allow culling in the spring and no culling in the summer. (not too important)

7)Set limits of ( 3 for Open), (6 or 9 for Amatures), (12 for Pros)

8) Have fishing start and end times controlled by Observers and/or Radio announcements by the Committee.(Can't erase smile)

9)Keep GPS tracking of catch.

10)Have bonus Lake Trout in limit.

11)Have Friday and Sat. as Tournament days. Made for a much better Weigh-in and time for teams to socialize.

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titherdick

IMO you hit the nail right on the head this is the only format that would give the Pro/Ams that prestigiousness they once had

Agree x 10

AGREE !!!

Tom

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Titherdick,

I agree with most of your format especially with a Friday Saturday event. I think instead of culling each team, AM Division, should take their best 9 out of the DEC rule on fish limit of 3 fishermen and for the Pros their best 12 based on a 4 man DEC limit. I also like the weigh in proposal.

Vince,

I also like your proposal of Kings only and 12 King box for each division however a grid is also good BUT Niagara county is so unpredictable for spring kings that we may end up with a traffic jam at the bar.

Brian,

You said it best. The 2 main issues after the change last year was entrance fee and open comm. In 2011 the entrance fee for an amature team was $260 and amatures paid Observers between $75 - $100. The new event changed the entrance fee to $650 + $150 for Amatures and $45 for administration fee which is about 165% increase. Pro division in 2011 was $550 + $150 Observer fee which is a 20% increase. Most of us snd i will speak for our team, is way out of range. I can assure you if the entrance fee does not come down considerably the event will never grow.

I have only been back on Lake O for the past 5 years and Niagara Pro/Am seems to draw about 76 teams total ( 26 Ams, 50 Pros ) and I saw as high as 81 teams. As soon as the event moves to Orleans it seems to drop about 40% and Oswego seems to follow Orleans but when it went to Sodus it increased to around the same numbers as Niagara. My take is the tournaments are to close together and I understand that is was done this way because of teams traveling from all over the lake. Is this the only reason and has this issue been revisited to maybe have the events spread out further?

I sure hope some changes are made to at least bring the event back to a Pro/Am event as it was in the past with a reasonable entrance fee.

Shade

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