As smallmouth bass tournaments go, the annual Black River Classic probably has the same format as similar events.

There’s a difference, however. While most bass tournaments place their emphasis on cash prizes, the Black River Classic boasts that entertainment is its priority. “Ours is a fun tournament,” Paul Rogers says. “While money is awarded as prizes, we try to make our two-day event a family thing. In our tournament, there’s something for everyone.”

Rogers, who is secretary of the tournament’s sponsoring body, said that the Kings County Wildlife Association (KCWA) sets up the tournament so everyone could enjoy themselves while catching bass. “We’ll have a barbecue and prizes for mother and daughter, father and son, and father and daughter fishing teams,” Rogers said.

One of the largest tournaments in the province, the Black River Classic is run by KCWA members who work as volunteers. The Classic will be held this year on July 4 and 5 and Paul Rogers expects a busy weekend. “We’ve drawn up to 106 teams of anglers from around the province in past tournaments and we don’t expect it to be any different this year,” Rogers said.

The Classic is one of at least 40 that will be held around the province through the summer months until October. Rogers said there is at least one bass tournament every weekend somewhere. As in other Classics, catch and release will be the rule. Teams are comprised of two anglers.

At this year’s Classic teams will compete for cash prizes, jackets and other merchandise with a separate award for the largest bass. In addition, a draw will be held for a 12′ Princecraft boat and 3 h.p. motor. Proceeds from the tournament will be used by the KCWA to fund conservation projects in Kings County.

It isn’t too late to enter the Classic, by the way. Anglers interested in entering the tournament can obtain entry forms by phoning (902) 681-3244.

Join River Watch

Anglers interested in making a contribution to their favourite outdoor activity may want to check out the River Watch program. In a nutshell, this is a volunteer program run by people who “commit their time, energy and expertise to help with the enforcement of regulations to protect aquatic life.”

In other words, members of the River Watch program act as unofficial water police and observe, monitor, record, and report violations. The program has been in place in the province for several years and is sponsored locally by the Friends of the Cornwallis River.

If you are interested in joining the River Watch program, a one-day training session is planned for June 20, either at Coldbrook or Wolfville. Contact Beth Lenentine at Acadia University (585-1311) if you’d like to participate.

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