WEIPA, a small seaside town on Cape York with a reputation for big fish and idyllic weather, will host the Weipa Fishing Challenge on the Queen’s Birthday long weekend this year.
The Weipa Fishing Challenge has grown from just 69 entries in 1969 to over 1100 registrations in 2003. Wayne Forrest, president of Cape Care Association, a non-profit group that turn out the Challenge each year, attributes the tournament’s success to keeping everybody busy – either winning prizes or out fishing the magnificent waters around Weipa. The prize pool this year is over $84,000 and creeping up towards 100 big ones; and the focus is not only on fishing but diversifies into an event that’s similar to a country show, with a huge entertainment program each night.
Also, the weather in Weipa is magnificent in winter. “In the last nine years the Challenge has not had one day cancelled because of bad weather,” said Wayne.
All money raised is channeled into the next year’s event, resulting in over 200 prizes being given away this year to some 1200 entrants. The major prize is a Yamaha/Polycraft boat package loaded with electronics from Markwell Marine, C-Map and Navman and worth $30,000. Holidays, cameras, a quad motorcycle, over 70 EvaKool eskies, Navman sounders, plotters, underwater cameras and fishing gear by the pallet load are all up for grabs. There is even a competition for kids the previous weekend that gives away some $3000 worth of fishing gear. The Open Challenge has 11 fish categories that will generate over $13,000 worth of prizes.
The big game simulator, casting and cast-net competitions, a huge Saturday night Music Muster complete with spit-roast and non-stop country entertainment, sports videos, seafood cooking demonstrations and top fishing writers such as Kim Bain, are only a few more of the attractions that has North Queensland buzzing with excitement on June 11-14. Entries are $5 for kids and $45 for open and all details are at [url=http://www.weipafishingchallenge.com/]. For other details or a copy of the program call Wayne on (07) 4069 9860, (07) 4090 6278, 0428 699 860, 0428 669 035 or --e-mail address hidden-- – WFCReads: 945