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RRWT set to cast off Thursday
By Ken Johnston
One-hundred and eighty anglers are all set to compete in the 14th annual Rainy River Walleye Tournament this Friday and Saturday. But while they are out trying to win the $15,000 grand prize, there is plenty for everyone to do under the big tent at Hannam Park in Rainy River.
The event kicks off on Thursday afternoon at 4 p.m. with a parade of boats. Most if not all the teams will line up down the old highway and then parade up Sixth St. and over to Main St. and south on it. Fans are encouraged to come out and cheer them on and kids to come and pick up the goodies the teams always toss out of the boats!
After the parade anglers will be treated to a dinner at the tent and then a rules meeting will be held. At 7:30 p.m. the public can attend beer gardens and later enjoy a mix and mingle to TOP Music Productions.
Friday the day begins with the anglers heading out on the Rainy River for the day at 9:15 a.m.
After lunch the RR Playschool Penny Table and a silent auction open at 2 p.m. Beer Gardens will open at 3 p.m. and Day 1 weigh-ins begin at 5:15 p.m.
The Ionic Lodge will be hosting a fish fry at 6 p.m. and a dance to TOP Music Productions will take place under the tent at 9 p.m.
Saturday is the busiest of the three days with the anglers departing earlier at 8:45 a.m. and the penny table and silent auction opening at 10 a.m.
A mini-trade show will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the old CN Station. Admission will be a non-perishable food item to be donated to the Rainy River Food Bank.
At 10:30 a.m. registration for the always popular RRWT Kids Tournament will take place. It will be divided into two flights. 11-11:30 a.m. will be ages 8 & under and 11:30-12 p.m. will be ages 9-16. Prize presentations will take place in the big tent after each flight. Life jackets are required for all participants and the fishing will take place at the Government Dock area.
Also at 11 a.m. interactive Nerf Tag and Capture the Flag games will be held in the park for kids aged 6-12. It will be run until 2 p.m. and equipment is provided.
At 1 p.m. a new feature to the tournament will be held under the tent. Vaughn’s Variety Hour (and a half) will take place (See story inside this paper).
Beer gardens re-open at 1 p.m.
At 3:45 p.m. the boats return and the final weigh-ins are held. The top five boats from Day 1 are held back until all the rest of the boats have weighed in. They will then be brought into the tent in their boats one at a time to see if they can dethrone the top team. It is always exciting and the public is encouraged to get to the tent early to get a good seat!
At 5 p.m. the Legion will host a steak fry at the tent.
At 6 p.m. the awards presentation will be held and the draw for the Legion Boat Raffle will be held!
At 9:45 p.m. the band Rockbox will play until 2 a.m.