With April 1 a trigger point to get anglers geared up for spring fishing action around New York, it’s also a time to start planning out your schedules for the coming Great Lakes fishing season. The 31st Annual Lake Ontario Pro-Am Salmon Team Tournament held out of Niagara USA is a prestigious event that is run out of the ports of Wilson and Olcott. Last year, when the tournament organizers decided to step it up for the 30th Anniversary celebration, it became two events over two weekends – but married together with special cups and prize money for the Trophy and Classic Divisions, as well as the Recreational Open contests. This year, another milestone has been reached in an effort to expand the awareness of the tournament. Wilson Harbor, in conjunction with Bootleggers Cove Marina (formerly Sunset Bay Marina), will be the site for the second weekend’s weigh-in festivities, including the overall awards ceremony for the two Niagara USA events.
The first tournament weekend is set for May 30-31 out of Krull Park in Olcott. The second tournament weekend will be June 6-7 out of Bootleggers Cove Marina in Wilson. “We are excited to be part of the tournament,” said Capt. Dan Evans, operator of the marina. “Fishing is an important part of who we are and we want this to continue to grow. We recognize that we need to do our part to put our area back on the map again and this is just one way we can do that.”
In addition, the Friday Big Fish-Three Fish fishing contest has been expanded to both Fridays of the two tournaments – May 29 and June 5. Known as the Don Johannes and Pete DeAngelo Memorial Fishing Contest, this is great news for any teams fishing the Pro-Am events as a warm up to the big competition. Details will be available soon.
The tournament website has information on the 2015 Pro-Am entry forms. There are deadlines for registering, so don’t delay in signing up. The website is live the week following Easter, April 5. Log on to www.lakeontarioproam.net for more information. Last year, over $105,000 in cash and $10,000 in merchandise was handed out to tournament winners. Extra cup cash from sponsors was over $40,000 alone!! Sponsors this year so far includes Seneca Niagara Resort and Casino; Bootleggers Cove Marina; Town of Newfane; Niagara Tourism and Convention Corp.; Robert M. Cinelli, Inc.; Great Lakes Tackle Shop; Team Dreamweaver; Moor Electronics; Fish Hawk Electronics; Lake Ontario United; Rebel Charters; ITO Flies; Buffalo Sabres Alumni; NY Outdoor News; Lake Ontario Outdoors; Great Lakes Angler; Newfane Family Chiropractic confirmed as of March 31.