Wednesday, October 12, 2016

New Orleans Fly Fishers 8th Annual Rio Rodeo Recap

New Orleans Fly Fishers 8th Annual Rio Rodeo Recap
Written by: Sean B. Gilthorpe
The New Orleans Fly Fishers Rio Rodeo was created in 2009 by then Club President Larry Offner.  The Rio Rodeo was originally created as a way for Louisiana fly fishers to come together, and help raise awareness of the Rio Grande Cichlid, an invasive species in Louisiana.  Since the beginning, the Rio Rodeo has achieved these goals, and in the process become one of the largest fly fishing tournaments in the State of Louisiana, as well as the Gulf Coast Region.  For the last 3 years, the Rio Rodeo has consistently seen the number of participants exceed 30 fly fishers, with the greatest attendance reaching 35 participants in 2015.  While there were 3 fewer participants for the 8th Annual Rio Rodeo in 2016, it was still a great success. 
On October 1, 2016, the New Orleans Fly Fishers Club hosted the 8th Annual Rio Rodeo.  The weather was perfect and the Rios, as usual, presented a formidable challenge to all.  There were a total of 32 fly fishers who registered and participated in this year’s Rio Rodeo.  There were 7 Rio Grande Cichlids submitted and measured, ranging in size from 6" to 10-1/2".  Prizes were awarded for 1st through 7th place participants.  The results are as follows:
Rob Bergeron - Fin Addicts Fly Fishers - 10-1/2"
Stephen Robert - Fin Addicts Fly Fishers - 9-1/2"
Joe Illg - NOFFC - 8-1/4"
Joe Bandera - NOFFC - 8"
John Engert - NOFFC - 7-1/2" 
Kyle Moppert - Red Stick Fly Fishers - 7-1/2"
Ray Baltz - NOFFC - 6-1/2
The New Orleans Fly Fishers would like to thank everyone who participated in the 8th Annual Rio Rodeo, as we raised $400 for Second Harvest Food Bank!  With the money raised, Second Harvest Food Bank can load HALF an 18 wheeler with food, to distribute to those in need.  This couldn't have been possible without those of you who competed in the rodeo or could not attend and donated to our cause.  We would also like to thank all the sponsors who donated the prizes for the rodeo.  Capt. Tristan Daire of Olde Towne Fly Shop & Outfitters and Larry Offner donated prizes for the winners. 

Finally, there are a few NOFF members who deserve recognition for their tireless efforts to make the 8th Annual Rio Rodeo successful.   Al Kellogg, our club Treasurer, took care of all the record keeping and received registration forms and fees for this Rodeo.  His hard work helped ensure Second Harvest Food Bank received all funds received from the Rodeo.  A.J. Rosenbohm, our club Vice President, who coordinated with Second Harvest Food Bank for the donation presentation.   He also helped greatly with the logistics of putting on the rodeo.   Sean Gilthorpe, who served as Past –President, was responsible for the food service for the Rodeo.  Sean donated, prepared, and cooked the food for the barbeque lunch, which received rave reviews!   Thanks to the contributions and hard work of these members, the 8th Annual Rio Rodeo was a great success!
Note from the blogger; Living in the Northwest, I had never heard of the Rio Grande Cichlid.  A quick look at Wikipedia soon made me very aware of the damage caused by these non-native invasive fish.  High five to the NOFF.

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