The OHMC held our annual Division Day and Spring Outing at Clearfork Reservoir near Mansfield, Ohio on Friday June 6th through Sunday June 8th 2014. For several club officers, the weekend started on Thursday as we arrived early to setup for the event and get in a little pre-fishing. We had the entire overflow camping area reserved and over 20 club members took advantage of the opportunity for some group camping together. It was the largest crowd of members camping at one site that any of us could remember.
Division Day started off crisp and clear as we assembled in the pavilion that would serve as home base for the weekend activities. We had 10 club members guide 6 Division of Wildlife personnel and 4 Outdoor Writers of Ohio. Shortly after 8:00 we hit the water and soon thereafter the radio came alive with reports of fish in the net. The fishing was decent for numbers, but we certainly were not on pace to break any size records. With that being said, every guest came to me individually and indicated that they had a wonderful day. I reminded them that we cannot have such a great day without our members volunteering their time and resources to make it possible.
By 3:00 we were back on dry ground and taking in the pleasant smoke pouring from the grill as Rick Simpson and Tim Smith prepared our table fare of burgers and dogs. Along with some side dishes, we were all able to satisfy our bellies and enjoy the atmosphere of cooperation that has been a long time tradition of our organizations.
The tally sheet showed that a total of 7 muskies had been caught and that the winner was Nick Radabaugh who works as a Fisheries Biologist for the DNR. Nick’s winning fish was 34.50” and was netted by his guide Member Elmer Heyob. We had a couple of first time guides and they did quite well. Members Robert and Stephanie Neville guided Nick Jamison onto 3 fish for the day. Member Jack Neville guided Curt Wagner onto a fish and President Paul Anderson guided for Dan Armitage and his son Ethan. It worked out well as Ethan was able to catch his first muskies ever.
Thank you to all the guides that came out, which included Treasurer John Ringenbach, Secretary Tim Smith, 2nd V.P. Rick Simpson, Member Jack Whyde, Member Phil Cummins, and Member George Kourkounakis.
Saturday morning started off with pancakes and coffee along with an enormous bass tournament that overfilled the parking lot. Before the officers were done conducting the registration, the eventual winner had already landed a huskie. The rest of us were playing from behind for the entire event, and we loved it. That is because the nice fish had been caught by Junior Member Charles Neville. Being family friendly is also a proud tradition of our club.
When 5:00 rolled around we were about to have what were possibly the best steaks ever served at an OHMC steak fry. One inch thick enormous rib-eye steaks greeted the participants as they were served by club chef Jerry Rice. As has become a tradition over the last several years, OHMC 1st V.P. Jeff Ferjutz and Jerry came in early to fire up the grill and proceeded to cook our steaks with the masterful touch that all of us truly appreciate. We also conducted the raffle prize drawings after the steak fry. The Rod and Reel was won by Anna Land, the 50-50 was won by Jeff Ferjutz, and the Lure Board was won by Paul Anderson. Nearly every person that purchased a general raffle ticket left with a prize.
As the dawn cracked on Sunday morning we all realized that the perfect weather that had been enjoyed for the three preceding days was now over. Much of the day was raining and a few of those showers were very heavy. With the change in conditions, several entrants hit the water in hopes of encountering a hot bite. Most of us had misplaced our hopes and took a wet boat ride.
When the event concluded and we met back up at 3:30 the record showed that a total of 6 fish had been caught by 34 anglers for the Spring Outing on Saturday and Sunday.
Third place went to John Ringenbach with a 36.00” fish worth 10 points.
Second place and the $95 big fish pot went to Chuck Land, Jr. with his total of 21.5 points for two fish; sizes 30.00” and 43.50”.
First place and a mighty big smile went to junior member Charles Neville with his total of 42.00 points for his three fish; sizes 30.00”, 44.50”, and 45.50”.
Congratulations to all of our winners! They will receive their awards at our annual banquet next March.
Thank you to everyone that came out to support the event and the club!