On Saturday, the volunteers from the Balls Creek Bassmasters fishing club will hold their 24th annual bass tournament at Queens Landing, Mooresville, to raise money for the V Foundation for Cancer.
Since 1986, the tournament has raised more than $723,000 to fight cancer. The V Foundation is named after the late Jim Valvano, the basketball coach who led the N. C. State Wolfpack to a basketball national championship in 1983. The tournament is named for Jim Ledbetter, legendary television fishing show host and professional angler from the Catawba County area. Both men died of cancer.
"This is not your average run-of-the-mill bass tournament," said Bob Patrick, chairman of the event. "The tournament has grown in popularity. We are expecting over 200 boats this year and a large spectator crowd. It is an event the entire family will enjoy. Our partnership with Foothills Marine, Skeeter Boats and Yamaha has proved to be an awesome addition to the already popular event."
The tournament has more than 50 sponsors, including Foothills Marine, Skeeter Bass Boats, Yamaha, Pepsi-Cola of Hickory, Bass Pro Shops, BB&T and many others.
Anglers are lured from the Carolinas and surrounding states to try to catch five big bass to win a brand new, fully-rigged Skeeter Bass Boat with a Yamaha engine. This event is considered to be one of the most respected and well-attended bass tournaments in the country. It is the longest running charity tournament held on Lake Norman.
There will be a casting contest and activities for kids. Helping will be Chuckie Culley, national kids casting champion, and his sister, Crystal Culley, six-time North Carolina State champion. Your kids can try their luck from 12:30 to 4 p.m.
New trucks and boats will be on display. A raffle for dozens of donated products and a silent auction will be held.
Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts from St. Mark's Lutheran Church in Claremont will assist in the live release of all the fish caught. and weighed in.
The 2008 event had a record number of boats: 270. More than 1,200 pounds of bass were weighed and released.
Boats will launch in flights starting at 7 a.m. at Queens Landing (Highway 150) in Mooresville. Weigh-in will start at 2:30 pm. The top teams in the following categories will receive a cash prize of $500 each: Husband/Wife, Adult/Child and Senior Citizen.
Look for the tournament results next week.