The Press Box for May 29
This past weekend was a special one as I made my way to the old stomping grounds for a visit with relatives and a journey to Lake Erie for some of the best fishing this side of Heaven. After a brief stop in the big city of Cleveland to visit an old friend, we headed on up the shoreline to Port Clinton to try our hand in the 39th annual Walleye Festival fishing tournament.
The event which draws fishermen from all over the country pays a handsome sum of $100,000 to the winner. My cousin knows the area a lot better than I do and he picked out a pretty good spot where we reeled in what we thought had a chance at the big bucks, however we didn’t even make it in the top ten despite taking in over 20 walleyes weighing in at 83 pounds.
We had a difficult time getting to all the spots with so many boats on the lake, but we found a good spot late in the day and landed two 5-pounders. There were a lot of pros on the lake, but the fun part was watching the locals who work the area everyday get to the best spots. Lake Erie is the home waters for the locals and they don’t take kindly to outsiders fishing in their spots. After a day on the Lake we took in some of the fun in Port Clinton, where they had a 5-K run/walk to go along with all day events, including food booths, clowns, kids games and an old time carnival. There were bands playing on every corner, with over 130 vendors from all over it was the perfect summer kickoff.
It was also perfect weather with temperatures in the low 80’s and water temperatures around 65. Got a little wet a few times but all-in-all it was worth ruining a good pair of Nike shoes, just to get a good feel of the old lake water.
At the end of the day we went back to the house and cooked up a mess of the best tasting fish you can find anywhere. Nothing except maybe some yellow perch which we had a few of can even compare. My cousin knows all the secrets to frying walleye plus his own special recipe for batter. One of the best dishes I’ve ever had is walleye cakes. The 5-K walk didn’t help me one bit, it will take at least a month to get over the fish taste but it was a great throw back to earlier days when my grandfather fried fresh catch at least five days a week.
Yes sir, summer is officially here, and there’s more to do than meets the eye. I spent a total of $210 dollars on the trip including gas. During the trip back, we made a stop at the pro football hall of fame which is worth every dime spent.
If you find yourself without anything to do this summer, take a day trip. They are often the best kind, West Virginia has some of the best lakes and resorts in the country. Every time we visit a state park of just take a ride through the eastern part of the state, we see vehicles with license plates from other states. If you can’t get away just visit our community parks or one of the many fairs and festivals. The Wetzel County Visitors and Convention Bureau puts on one of the best music events in the country. The New Martinsville Regatta will be a world champion event this year, you don’t want to miss it. It will pack the people in from all over the country. I was told they were awarded the championship race because the River in New Martinsville is well known for the fast times. While the Regatta will be held in September. The Vintage Hydroplanes will take to the water next month. It is a favorite with vintage boat enthusiasts.
Sistersville has its fair share of events as well. The marble festival draws a lot of people into town and the picnic in the park on the Sunday following the fourth of July, has the best fireworks display this side of Pittsburg. Summer basketball and co-ed softball is also going on in Sistersville for anyone looking for competition. There is plenty more with the local fairs, Paden City’s labor-day parade and event and the oil and gas festival. A full summer worth of activity is right here at our footsteps. Sistersville. Middlebourne and Paden City all have splash pads for the kids and nice playground equipment and New Martinsville has an updated pool at Lewis/Wetzel park plus a putt putt golf course at Bruce Park.
With sports season for this school year officially over, it’s tough to come up with a top five sports performance of the week, but I’ll give it a try. 1. The first one is easy, Spencer Corley and his gold medal high jump at the state meet. With a jump of 6-4 he easily won the event with 5-10 the next best. 2. Second goes to EJ Weber who worked his tail off in the past three weeks to better his shot put toss by over six feet to finish fourth in the state for the Paden City Wildcats. 3. Third is Tyler’s Zack Placer and Nathan Barker finishing second and third in the 110 meter high hurdles in Charleston. 4. Fourth isMark Rucker who came in third in the 100 meter dash at the state meet. 5. Fifth goes to Paden City’s Abbe Stackpole finishing fourth in the 100 meter dash and 200 meter dash at the state meet. firstname.lastname@example.org