Wednesday, July 31, 2013

2013 Kingston Canadian Open - What you may have missed!

The Kingston Canadian Open held it's fourth annual event this past weekend in beautiful down town Kingston, Ontario. As usual this event drew some of the biggest names in Canadian fishing (and a few American ones). Like with any major tournament the events success is measured by the quality of the anglers in the field and of course the quantity and quality of the fish they catch, but to me, this is not what makes the Kingston Canadian open great.. here are a few things you may have missed if you just focused on the fish

Fishing is a family Sport:

A good portion of the crowd taking in the Open this year consisted of families. families out enjoying a nice day along the Kingston water front, families of the anglers cheering on their husband, wife, father or mother, and of course Canada's first family of fishing was also in the house, with Bob Izumi, brother Wayne and son Darren all competing in the Open. (Bob's wife was also on hand as well as his niece and WFN host Mariko Izumi)

On top of all the families in the crowd, some anglers also took this opportunity to bring their kids up on stage with them. Anglers such as Barry Graves (above) and Josh Myers (below) allowed their kids to share in some of their success and pose for the cameras. Angler Mike Brown's son stole the show when he showed off his comedic talent by taking the mic and shouting gibberish for as long as they would let him.. you can tell he has some of that Russell Peters blood in his veins (for those who don't get the reference Mike and Russell are cousins) 

Sportsmanship is alive & well

One of the awesome things I took away from the 2013 open is the level of sportsmanship and respect these anglers show to one another. Each time top spot on the leader board changed up, the anglers would go out of their way to congratulate the new leader, (even if you were the one he replaced). Guys would shake hands and say good luck, maybe offer some good natured ribbing. But one thing was certain, they like and respect each other, and what they have accomplished. It was fun to watch when an angler waiting in line to weigh in had a large bag of fish as you would actually see other anglers gather around to pat him on the back or stare in awe at his/her collection of fish. 

One of the best moments for me was watching Pro Erny Janzen celebrating this day-3 (19.10lbs) bag, by jumping, shouting and hugging his partner, not because it helped him personally, but because it propelled his partner Cal Climpson into the top spot on the Am side. Erny himself was well out of contention as a pro but his excitement around helping his partner was truly contagious, and something I will never forget

(Cal Climpson and Corey Ruttan shake hands after Cal knocks Corey out of first place)

The Women of the Canadian Open

Back in 2012 I watched Jennifer Fullard take the stage as the only female angler  participating in the Open. She definitely held her own in the male dominated field (of 80) and it appears she may even have been a bit of an inspiration as two more ladies signed on for 2013.. Yvonne Brown and Dina Emery joined Jennifer this year in representing Canadian women on the water. All three of them performed extremely well, Yvonne took home 5th place, Dina 13th and Jennifer 28th

Nice job ladies, lets hope the trend continues and we see 7 (or more) women competing in the 2014 event

(Jennifer Fullard was paired up with fellow Dobyns Rods team member Ryan Susanna on day 3)

For the Kids:

I touched on this a bit last year, but I feel it needs to be mentioned again. The Kingston Canadian open is a very kid friendly event, and an awesome way to get kids into fishing at an early age.

Big Jim McLaughlin MC'd the event again this year, he is great at filling in the voids left between anglers taking the stage and even better at keeping the kids active.. you can tell they just know he is going to be tossing out more prizes so they always have one eye on him at all times.

For the bigger kids who may not be into the prize side of things, there is always the anglers themselves. TV personalities like Bob Izumi and JP Derose fish this event and always take time afterward to meet with the kids, have photos taken and of course sign some autographs. being a big kid myself Im still in awe of Bob Izumi who I believe is the reason most men in my generation became fisherman

Hey I'm on TV

for the first time in the Open's history a crew from WFN was on site all three days taking photos, and posting to various social media sites about the results and the fun being had.  On Day 3 a WFN film crew was on hand to film the action on and off the water. So check your local listing and watch for an air date, because if your like me and took in the final weigh in, hey, you might just be on TV!

WFN also ran a cool contest called "Playing Hookie with a Pro" the winner (Jeff Buck) got to participate in the open as a co-angler. After Day 1 he and his partner were in first place, that has to be a thrill.

So that's that, you are now up to speed on what you need to know about the 2013Kingston Canadian open, maybe Ill see ya there in 2014

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