I’m putting together the second annual Operation “Kick Some Bass” Tournament for Freedom Care Warrior Project. It was recently featured on the Bassmaster website, here. As the tournament director, I am 100% committed to making this the best possible tournament for the 60 soldiers who will be involved.
Those of you who know me will know that I was badly wounded while serving in Iraq, so taking care of our soldiers is a cause that’s very close to my heart. This is an opportunity to give something back to soldiers by providing a fun, carefree day on the water while also raising funds and awareness for the Freedom Care Warrior Project (FCWP).
The FCWP is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization created to help our soldiers! You can learn more at the FCWP website, here: http://www.freedomcarewarriors.org
This tournament is intended to be a day of fun for the boater and the Wounded Warrior/Veteran. The format is Team Pro/Am. In other words, the Pro and Amateur will be working as a team for the day’s event and weight and standings will be determined by the combined weight of both anglers. Trophies and prizes will be awarded at the end of weigh in.
There are no entry fees, and we only have 60 team slots available. The first 60 boaters who register will be paired with a veteran or active duty soldier. The purpose of this tournament is to provide a fun day of fishing for the soldier, so boaters should plan to spend the day fishing and mentoring his/her soldier on the water.
If any of the amateur contestants (Wounded Warrior/Veterans) require special considerations in order to fish, they must identify that to the tournament director upon registration.
Along with volunteer pros/boaters, I am also asking for sponsors and/or donations for raffle items. We are also offering vendor space for sponsors for a $150 donation. Vendors/sponsors can also provide signage ot be displayed on the weigh-in stage.
Contact me by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or Jon Van Winkle Freedom Care Warrior Project Founder at email@example.com
- What: Operation “Kick some Bass” Tournament to support Freedom Care Warrior Project
- When: September 21st
- Where: Lake Graham/Lake Eddleman
- Who: Volunteer Boaters and Wounded Warriors/Veterans.Service Personnel
- Why: To support America’s service personnel
The weigh-in will take place at the Square in downtown Graham, TX with free admission for the public. There will be a silent auction, as well as a 40’x40’ catfish catch tank for the kids. Lunch will be served to the public around noon, before the weigh-in.
Pre Tournament Dinner for boaters and soldiers will be held at the Warrior Ranch on Friday evening at 6:30 P.M. There will be a skeet shoot following dinner.
I promise to create among my fellow anglers, and the public in general, an awareness of my Chapter’s and Society’s contributions to angling, conservation and outdoor recreation.
I will encourage and instruct the youth of my community in the art of bass fishing.
I pledge myself to full adherence to all conservation codes and to detect and report any polluter of our nation’s waters.
This hunt is to help raise funds for the Haskell County, Tx. Veteran’s Memorial Wall
Scoring on Coyotes, Bobcats, Mountain Lions, Hogs, and Raccoons
Grand Prize – Weekend stay for 10 at the Freedom Care Warrior Ranch
Optional side pots for Coyote, cat, coon and hogs with 50% payout / 50% donation
Optional Calcutta with 50% payout.
Teams can sponsor a veteran to hunt with the team!
Lake Lewisville, Lewisville, TX
As I prepared for the first tournament of the Bassmaster Central Opens season on Lake Lewisville, I was expecting the worst. In the 15 years that I’ve lived in Texas, I’d never even considered fishing the lake prior to this tournament. Everything I had heard about the lake was bad. The locals even have their own special names for the place, like “LoservilIe” and “Sewerville.” The less clever simply refer to it as “the big old mud hole.” Needless to say, it’s not where I would have chosen to start my Bassmaster Open career.
To make things even more interesting, it started raining about two weeks before the tournament. And it kept raining. Then it rained some more. This was good news for an area that seems to be in a perpetual state of drought, but I knew it was going to muck things up even worse than usual at Lewisville.
Within a few days, the lake level rose by about four feet (it was seven feet below normal pool when the rain started). Then came another bout of rain and the lake came up even further, to just one foot below normal pool. This really is a good thing. All of Texas needs the rain and it’s great to see any lake get back to its normal level. But just a week before the opening tournament? The timing was horrible. The already dirty lake was made even dirtier. The entire body of water looked like chocolate milk, from the mouths all the way down to the dam.
After the rain came the wind and the cold fronts. By tournament time, temps were peaking between 40 and 50 degrees and dipping all the way down to the 20s. These conditions are not conducive to good bass fishing or positive attitudes. I was certain the Florida strain bass in Lake Lewisville were reacting to current conditions even worse than I was. (more…)