Fishing tournaments bringing boatloads of anglers to Colbert County

by Dennis Sherer
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Henry and Jo Haley with crappie they caught during a Crappie USA fishing tournament on Pickwick and Wilson lakes

SHEFFIELD-A pair of fishing tournaments in April will bring boatloads of anglers and national attention to Pickwick and Wilson lakes.

A Crappie USA Trail tournament on April 11 and a King Kat Trail tournament on April 18 will attract anglers from several states. Both tournaments are sponsored by Colbert County Tourism and Convention Bureau and will be based out of Riverfront Park in Sheffield.

“We are already getting calls about the tournaments from anglers who tell us they are looking forward to coming to Colbert County,” said Susann Hamlin, president and CEO of Colbert County Tourism. “The tournaments will provide great exposure for our lakes and boost our economy.”

In addition to the economic benefits for local hotels, restaurants, tackle shops and other

Mike Mitchell with a Tennessee River giant

business during the weekend of the tournaments, Hamlin said many of the anglers will visit Colbert County before the competitions to practice for the events and will return here afterward to fish for fun. They also tell their friends and others anglers they meet about The Shoals and its lakes. Reports about both competitions will be published in national fishing magazines and on social media and websites.

Hamlin said anglers enjoy coming to Colbert because it has two world-class fisheries, Pickwick and Wilson lakes,  and amazing attractions. Anglers will be able to fish either lake during both tournaments.

Weigh-ins for both tournaments will be held at Riverfront Park, 1416 Alabama Ave, Sheffield.

Weigh-in for the Crappie USA event, presented by Bass Pro Shops Cabela’s, begins at 3 p.m. April 11. Admission is free.

A Crappie Kids Fishing Rodeo, for youth 12 and younger, is 9-11 a.m. April 11 at the Riverfront Park pavilion and pier, 1000 Alabama Ave. Registration begins at 8 a.m. There is no charge to participate. Youths must be accompanied by an adult and provide their own fishing tackle. The young anglers will compete in two divisions, ages 0-6 and 7-12. Trophies will be awarded to the top anglers in both divisions. There will be numerous door prizes. The youths will fish from the bank for all species of fish and can use live bait. Lunch will be provided for anglers and their parents. For more details on the Crappie Kids Fishing Rodeo, call Colbert Tourism at 256-383-0783.

Weigh-in for the King Kat tournament begins at 3 p.m. April 18. Admission is free.

Entries are being accepted for both tournaments. For more details about either tournament, call 502-383-5924.

Clarion Inn Hotel in Sheffield is the host hotel for both tournaments. For hotel reservations, call 256-381-4710.


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