Cyclones are a regular feature of summers in Aotearoa, and while we haven’t experienced a direct hit this summer many events have been affected by activity in the Pacific. One of those events was the long-standing Fanatical Fishos fishing tournament organised by Chesters Plumbing and Bathroom Centre in New Lynn, Auckland.
As the forecasters were debating whether Cyclone Oma would land on our shores in late February contest organisers were considering the safety of participants. After 29 years was this going to be the first ever cancellation?
Thankfully the event went ahead and both Coastguard and LegaSea have benefited due to the generosity of Grant Chester and his team. For the last 23 years Grant and his New Lynn crew have donated thousands of dollars to support recreational fishing and the local Coastguard unit. This puts Chesters in the Gold Partner category for their legendary support of LegaSea.
Every year Chesters hosts hundreds of plumbers and their scaly mates to fish over two days in February. The anglers bring their catch in to have it weighed and recorded. Fishers donate their catch to the auction and then, if they are quick enough, they pay ridiculous prices to buy the fish back.
Proceeds from the auction are donated to Coastguard, and in the spirit of generosity Grant Chester matches that contribution with a donation to LegaSea. This year there were fewer fish and anglers due to the inclement weather but that didn’t dampen the enthusiasm. Coastguard and LegaSea each received $6000. These Fanatical Fishos are truly an amazing bunch.
Best of all, Chesters had the foresight to push the fish care message long before LegaSea’s FishCare best practice guide was spawned. The quality of fish returning to the weigh station improves every year and the most coveted prizes are awarded for the fish in best condition.
LegaSea also wants to acknowledge the recent contributions from many individuals and grassroots fishing clubs. The list of LegaSea Legends is growing steadily. These Legends make a regular contribution of $10 or more per month and in return they are given access to special deals and offers from our generous Partners and sponsors.
Another $200 contribution arrived recently from the Tokoroa Sports Fishing Association. This small crew have been staunch supporters of our advocacy efforts long before the advent of LegaSea and we appreciate their ongoing encouragement.
A bit of humour goes a long way
A contribution with a funny twist arrived by email recently. It was a picture of someone holding a can of LegaSea Lager while sitting in the cockpit of a moving boat. The caption accompanying the image was, “Supported LegaSea today, drunk their beer and harmed no fish”. Rebuilding our inshore fisheries should help this angler have more success in the future. In the meantime, check out the options online as there are simple and enjoyable ways to support LegaSea while you are sharing good times with your mates.