Updated: Jul 19, 2019
In its 3rd year of existence, the annual Outdoor Gathering (held at the Hubbard Conservation Club) saw another year of great attendance and also added a new facet to its draw. The event's founder, Geno Blair, said; that "the highlight of the day for most of the people who attend is getting to fish". So, this year we added an "unofficial" fishing competition. The NWTF donated items along with Mr. Greg Traynor, the founder of "Accessible Hunter", (a non-profit that focuses on helping those with mobility issues achieve their dreams of once again being able to hunt or enjoy time spent outdoors) which included fishing poles, bait, and other fishing supplies.
Prizes were awarded in the usual categories Largest Fish and Most fish caught, with the addition of "The person who fished the longest and did not catch a fish", "The person who caught their first-ever fish", and "The person who attended for the first time and caught a fish". Birds-in-Flight Rescue Sanctuary, from Warren, Ohio was also in attendance and gave another informative presentation and provided plenty of up-close photo ops of their feathered representatives. Weber Catering from New Wilmington, PA provided a BBQ pulled Pork and Mac-n-Cheese lunch along with a donation of Boneless wings from Hermitage Buffalo Wild Wings, (courtesy of Manager Stefanie and her staff).
Skip Motts, the Western Pennsylvania Regional Director of The NWTF, provided archery equipment and hands on instruction on the H.C.C. 3D range. Along with those already mentioned, WLS would also like to thank the different supporters who donated financially; Stigliano Family Practice, Christopher Schuster, Shenango Valley Beards & Spurs, Mark Buchanan, Donna Young, Elly Bell, Dean Vadala, David Coates & Family, Julie Dugan, Emilie Gaffney, Get 2 Work Productions, Patti Guerino Hoffman, Blase Iorio, Kathy & Laura Kahl, Patti Jordan, Lakeland Longbeards, Lisa Marcucci, Sherris Moreira, and Bill O'Brien/Declan Construction.
The day continues to hold a special meaning for the events founder, on top of the awesomeness of entire WLS family spending the day by the lake, for those of us in attendance who were blessed to have known Miss Kimberly "Kimmy" Baker, her memory remains in our hearts and minds and and this event serves as a "Thank-You" to everything she taught us in her short time at WLS.
Story by: Geno Blair
Photos by: Laura Kahl Photography