The 2017 Captain Mel classic is now complete. Our participants got out there in some pretty big wind. This year unlike other years the best results were from the people I would consider the best Anglers. We had an excellent group of people participate this year. Sponsor support was excellent as usual. We had one participant that did not buy into the overall pool. That cost her. She would have had the largest trout in the overall pool.

The new motor division was easily the largest division this year. The difference between first and second place was under an inch. Donald Waiberman came in third place. There were no redfish caught in the junior ladies or fly divisions. Prizes assigned to those categories went into the raffle. Instead of one pair of Smith Optics sunglasses in the raffle there were three. 8 stick it anchor pins were part of the prizes. Two Creations were in the no motor division prizes.   First and second place, No Motor, were Olin Satterfield and Nik Comeau

We had a great turnout for the ladies’ division. The junior division was kind of light. The fly division was also light. This means that next year the fly boxes will be very good. I will just get more donations of the same flies and fill the remaining boxes. Time or of the Flies I tied for the event. And we will have a great flight division next year. Only so many hours in a day, I didn’t promote this event as well as I did the first six years. Other events on the same day also affected our participation.  Our Fly division winners were Chuck Henkel, Joe Poliseno and Fred McClendon.

The party at the Fat Cat Tavern was easily a success. My friends who attended said that everyone left with a smile. My judging station was so efficient this year we got to the raffle 45 minutes earlier than we normally do. After a full day had in the wind, getting through the awards and the raffle in an expedient manner is something that is very good for our participants. The Fat Cat Tavern is just absolutely a great place to host an event.

Holly Rufo did not sign up for the ladies’ division this year. She fished in the open division and came the first place win (trout) beating out her husband by a very small margin. Brian Pershing, just barely behind both of them for the third place finish.

In the junior division, we had some of our regulars. They had a tough time in the Wind but I know they had a good time at the party.  Our Ladies winners were BJ Berger. Katrina Pershing and Angela Blanton.   Juniors:  Hunter Koch and Shawn Blanton.  Hunter’s father checked him in.    His father said “Junior” and so he was entered into that division.   Thinking he could be in Junior and “Open” (that is not our format, Hunter would have had first place trout in the Open division.      That’s life:    Gotta know the rules.   You only get to choose one division.

Marc Blanton catching the only redfish in the Open Division made him the overall winner there.
Anthony Rufo caught the biggest flounder of the day but it only paid $10.   Andrew Robertson’s 12.5 inch flounder paid out $100.

Our sponsors are already pledging their support for next year’s event.   I’m going to be adding some of our participants from this year on to our tournament committee. These are some guys that are really going to help me get even more people involved in the 2018 event. I have two new sponsors already that are coming on next year. Several sponsors that we’re unable to be involved this year will be back in both next year. Several companies had changes with employees which was the reason they couldn’t be involved this year. All of that will be sorted out by next year. I fully expect to have another sponsor for the grand prize in the new motor division. This was the first year we did not have a kayak as the grand prize. There are some developments where it should not be difficult to gain that back. With that prize, I can pay out more in all divisions.

As soon as we can we will be determining a date for next year’s event. Everyone seems to like the spring format.

Neil Taylor
Captain Mel Classic Director