It’s the beginning of January, and that means that more than 25 million United States residents will soon begin thinking about the upcoming fishing season. Who can blame them, really? The 2016 FLW Tour season was undoubtedly a great one, but 2017 is shaping up to be one of the best in history.
The 2016 season was my first year to have the honor of representing the FLW Foundation, both on the water and at Unified Fishing Derby events for local youths at each tournament. It was truly a great year, and I consider myself very blessed to have had the opportunity to be a part of it all.
Hoping to ride the momentum from the previous season, we will be expanding the FLW Foundation campaign in multiple ways. We will continue to host a Unified Fishing Derby at EVERY stop of the FLW Tour and Forrest Wood Cup, but we are also making a huge expansion in the program by now hosting derbies at many of the Costa FLW Series events.
The best part about all of these derbies is that they are completely FREE for the kids who participate. What happens when they win? They get the pro treatment, of course. Our event winners get to check out what happens behind the weigh-in stage, see the pros come in to the holding tanks and, most importantly, be awarded their trophies on the main stage.
It is very important that we continue to grow this program and, ultimately, the FLW Foundation. In recent years, there’s been a decline in the number of youths developing an interest in the sport through traditional pathways. Establishing different fishing opportunities in schools gives many of our youths an avenue into the fishing world that they might not normally have. In order to help jumpstart these programs, the FLW Foundation, in partnership with The Bass Federation, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, and the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation, has awarded $23,700 in funding to 49 Florida high schools to establish new or expand existing Student Angler Federation fishing clubs. This is a HUGE step in the right direction to ensure that the fishing and outdoor interests and industries continue to thrive.
In addition to all of the great things happening for the kids, there is a pretty awesome deal going on this year for adults. Frosch Outdoor and Adventure Travel is offering FLW members exclusive pricing on a seven-day western Caribbean cruise Aug. 19-26. This trip will be the first of its kind to be offered as a benefit of being a member of FLW. Even if a person decides that the trip isn’t for him, Frosch Outdoor and Adventure Travel is offering an additional percentage off all travel for 2017 FLW members.
I am very excited to begin the 2017 season on Lake Guntersville. We have a very unique and exciting Tour schedule this year that will definitely keep us on our toes all season long. This new expansion of the FLW Foundation program is something that I am very excited about too. I hope that we are able to offer more events and opportunities year after year.
In 2016, we saw at least one participant catch his or her first fish or largest fish at every event. Seeing the smile on someone’s face, the first time that he or she hooks into a fish, is something that never gets old. From the multitude of laughs and smiles, you know that the young people who participate are building memories and a love for fishing.
Contact Frosch Outdoor and Adventure Travel at 800.994.5538.
The FLW Foundation connects youths to their natural resources and promotes education, conservation and an active lifestyle. An FLW Foundation Unified Fishing Derby is hosted at every FLW Tour stop and many Costa FLW Series events, allowing youths nationwide to experience the joys of fishing. Visit FLWFishing.com/foundation for additional information.