June 5, 2019 — The Florence Siuslaw Lions Club held the 37th annual Fun Bass Tournament at Siltcoos Lake on June 1 and 2. More than 20 teams and 40 participants fished in the long-running tournament, which raises funds to support a variety of charitable activities in the Florence area during the year.
Lions Club International is a non-political service organization formed in Chicago in 1917. It now has more than 1.7 million members worldwide. These members, and the chapters they represent, are dedicated to helping with community-based issues that can best be addressed by providing needed funding.
The Florence Siuslaw Lions Club donates directly to school scholarships for two Siuslaw High School seniors each year and provides glasses, hearing aids and eye care to students and others with financial challenges. The tournament is one of the Lions Clubs most important yearly fundraising events.
The two-day tourney, held at Darlings Marina, is the only open bass competition currently held in the state. This means that anyone who wishes to enter and catch fish can do so without qualifying or competing to obtain entry into the tournament.
Fish were certainly biting over the weekend as 193 bass were caught during the tourney, which drew competitors and spectators from across Oregon. A number of prizes and trophies were awarded at the conclusion of fishing on Sunday afternoon, with the warm summer days over the weekend providing the perfect backdrop for the low-key event.
“What a great day for fishing!” said Lori Olson, who owns Darlings with her husband Rich. “The weather is perfect and the Lions do such good work. We are really happy with the way the weekend turned out.”
On Facebook, Darlings Marina encouraged people to “Come out and see who’s ‘Bass Boss!’”
The winners of the Fun Bass Tournament for total weight caught during this year’s tournament were Mike and Eric Strickler, posting a two-day total of 32 lbs., 3 oz.
Second Place went to Glen Gross, fishing on his own, for catching 31 lbs., 11 oz.
Third Place was caught by Len Larson and Rick Alexander after posting a total of 30 lbs., 12 oz.
Big Fish winners were Glen Gross for Saturday and Aaron Van De Hey for Sunday.
Women’s Big Fish winner was Rebecca Schaeffner and Youth Big Fish winner was Trini Hindman.
Besides the fishing tournament, the Florence Siuslaw Lions Club also coordinates the popular Wings and Wheels Car Show and Fly-in event, held annually at the Florence Municipal Airport, which raises the majority of money for the Lions Club’s programs. The Wings and Wheels Show will take place on Saturday, July 6, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.. The cost to the public is free, although donations are encouraged and gladly accepted. The same day will be Darlings Marina’s “Sparkle on the Siltcoos,” the annual fireworks show over the lake.
The Lions donate regularly to Florence Food Share, provide free health screenings to the public during Power of Florence and support special requests from individuals seeking financial assistance.
The Lions Club is currently recruiting volunteers to staff the Lion’s Food Truck, which can often be found at local events providing food and raising money for many of the programs the organization has supported since its inception in the 1950s. In addition, there are other important support needs for those interested in assisting the Lions Club with the work done on behalf of the community, including computer related work and social media postings.
For more information on the Florence Siuslaw Lions Club, call 541-997-2687 or visit www.e-clubhouse.org/sites/florence_siuslaw.