Given that the tournament was in doubt until June, members of the Rainy River Walleye Tournament (RRWT) committee were very pleased with the showing over the weekend.
While it took a while to wrap his mind around getting the tournament off the ground for this year, RRWT committee president Richard Trenchard feels the event went very well.
“I had a really hard time sort of getting into the idea of having a tournament this year,” Trenchard said. “It took me a long time. But then once we started getting the momentum going, It felt really good. Throughout the whole tournament, I was so happy to see everyone out there.”
Trenchard figures there were around 400 people in the big tent by the river on Saturday evening as final weigh-ins were conducted.
“I think it was one of the best events we’ve ever had,” Trenchard said. “I think everything went so smoothly.”
Additionally, committee member Cathy Seguin was also very pleased.
“We thought it was a huge success,” she said. “Everybody, in general, said it went very well.”
With the COVID-19 pandemic persisting, organizers were unsure if they would get the tournament off the ground.
“We didn’t decide until June, maybe, that we were gonna go forward with this,” Seguin said. “So it was a small time period that we had to get everything ready.”
“We had to put up with some changes,” Trenchard said. “But we just did whatever we had to do. We knew people expected us to keep them as safe as we could.”
To that end, hand sanitizer, masks and a contact tracing list were all in effect at the big tent.
“Everyone kept themselves safe out there,” Trenchard said. “They did all the social distancing and wearing masks, so it was a good feeling.”
On the fishing side of things, they were happy with a decent turn out of over 80 teams.
“We would have expected quite a few less,” said Seguin. “We did have some teams that paid but said just hold our money until next year, because they were unable to come. But we did have a few American teams come over and a few that chose not to come over, but will be back next year.”
After the final weigh-in, it was Oliver and Jason Gibbons who came away with the top prize. Their two-day total was 21.36 lbs.
The committee would like to thank everyone involved in the tournament, from sponsors to volunteers and all those who came out to make the event a success.
“We’d like to say thank you to everyone, not just the committee, but all of the volunteers that came and all of the people that attended,” Trenchard said. “For working hard and keeping everything safe and making the tournament end up so great.”