Eden­hope con­test suc­cess

The Weekly Advertiser Horsham - - Sports - BY DEAN LAW­SON

Plan­ning is un­der­way for next year’s Eden­hope Fish­ing Con­test af­ter more than 500 an­glers braved windy con­di­tions to en­ter the event at the week­end.

Com­pe­ti­tion or­gan­is­ers have al­ready pen­cilled in Novem­ber 2 and 3 for the two-day boat and bank com­pe­ti­tion, prov­ing to be a ma­jor op­por­tu­nity for re­gional ex­pa­tri­ates to rekin­dle their as­so­ci­a­tion with the west Wim­mera.

This year’s se­nior com­pe­ti­tion win­ner Joel Rid­dle of Hamil­ton pock­eted a $5000 first prize af­ter land­ing a brown trout weigh­ing 1.495 kilo­grams and mea­sur­ing 46 cen­time­tres.

He caught his win­ning fish from a boat to fin­ish ahead of Trevor Fu­te­rial of Eden­hope, who also fished from a boat and landed a 1.265kg and 41cm redfin. Greg White­head from Nara­coorte was third with a 1.235kg and 47cm brown trout.

A ju­nior com­pe­ti­tion, of­fer­ing a swag and ac­ces­sories val­ued at $1000 as first prize, went to Si­enna Bull, from Eden­hope, who caught a brown trout – the first fish of the day – that weighed in at 375kg and mea­sured 50cm.

She won from Ed­die White­head, Eden­hope, with a 1.36kg and 46cm rain­bow trout.

Iron­i­cally, the big­gest fish of the day fea­tured in a tid­dler sec­tion with young­ster Jet Finch man­ag­ing to land a 1.53kg, 49cm brown trout.

Event spokes­woman Kalla Col­gate said there was a gen­eral feel­ing that most peo­ple who took part in the sec­ond an­nual event at Lake Wal­lace went away happy with their ex­pe­ri­ence.

“It was pretty windy and tough for fish­ing but we still had good en­tries and it was still very suc­cess­ful. Ev­ery­one had a great time again. We had re­ally good feed­back and there were many prom­ises of peo­ple say­ing they were com­ing back next year,” she said.

Ms Col­gate said money gen­er­ated from the com­pe­ti­tion would go back into the event to make it ‘big­ger and bet­ter’ next year.

“We’re rein­vest­ing it all back into the event. What’s im­me­di­ately ob­vi­ous is the so­cial ben­e­fit the com­pe­ti­tion has on the town and dis­trict. It is as good for com­mu­nity men­tal health as any­thing else,” she said.

“It brings back a lot of peo­ple to Eden­hope – a lot of fam­i­lies who have con­nec­tions to the town and to the lake.

“Some peo­ple who have grown up in the town and moved away have never ex­pe­ri­enced any­thing but a dry Lake Wal­lace.

“This gives an ex­cuse for so many peo­ple – kids, grand­kids – to come and ex­pe­ri­ence what it’s like to have wa­ter in our lake.”

The Weekly Ad­ver­tiser and ra­dio sta­tions 3WM and MIXX FM, in recog­nis­ing the value of recre­ation wa­ter and com­mu­nity events, were ma­jor spon­sors of the event.

The com­pe­ti­tion ran from 9am to 8pm on Satur­day and from 6.30pm to noon on Sun­day.

Or­gan­is­ers man­aged to com­plete their event de­spite au­thor­i­ties declar­ing the pres­ence of blue-green al­gae at Lake Wal­lace late last week.

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