Enjoying a day of fun outdoor activity — in support of a worthy cause — tops the list of great ways to spend a summer day.
I’ve been cooking up a fun one for you in league with my good friend Col. Dave Lopez (USAF, ret.) — which promises to be fun and supports Coastal Conservation Association California Chapter (CCA-California). Dave and I are both on the board of the Santa Barbara Chapter of CCA.
You, your friends, family and colleagues can participate and/or simply support the cause with the minimal $25 entry fee from anywhere. Really, anywhere in the entire world! Simply go the website www.CCACalifornia.org and click on the link (on the right side) for 2020 Goleta Bay Blowout. You can sign up and donate the entry fee (or more) right there.
Coastal Conservation Association is one of the nonprofit organizations I strongly believe in and support, and I serve on the state Board of Directors as well as the board of the local chapter.
Goals are to enhance inshore fisheries, enhance inshore habitat and get people out on the water. The mission is to have healthy fisheries with angler access to them. I feel it is worthy of support and getting involved with at the local level (our chapter in Santa Barbara). Join me there.
We began by planning a fun and casual fishing photo challenge called Goleta Bay Blowout for Saturday, Aug. 15.
We reserved a group area at Goleta Beach County Park. The COVID-19 pandemic threatened to make the local plan unworkable, so we brainstormed a non-geographic and pandemic-responsible way to have a contest that is non-location specific and will work even if Goleta Beach should become entirely closed down.
The fun and the beauty of this fishing photo challenge is that people can fish from anywhere in the world — oceans, bays, rivers, lakes, streams and ponds. Just take a smartphone photo of each fish, held up against an accurate ruler (could be the one on top of a cooler); screenshot the photo and submit through the Discord app (easy to find and download).
Rules are super simple. Just follow local recreational fishing regulations, releasing or keeping fish as each person following local regulations chooses. The time frame is 6 a.m.-2 p.m. local time wherever a person fishes on Saturday, Aug. 15.
We take it from there, and the person with the greatest overall inches of all fish wins. It isn’t the biggest fish but is overall inches of all fish caught by an angler. There will be a number of places, from first place through perhaps 10th place. Those who place will win a gift card to go shopping with either online or, we hope, at a mom-and-pop shop near them.
Even though folks can fish the contest from anywhere, we decided to keep the name Goleta Bay Blowout because it is a cool name. Some folks may even fish Goleta Beach or from the pier, but they can fish anywhere. Rental rods and reels are available at the bait & tackle shack on Goleta Pier. The bait & tackle shop on Stearns Wharf also rents rods and reels.
Let’s make this a big local community event and share this article with your friends and families and colleagues anywhere and everywhere. Put it on your social media pages, please.
Besides California residents, we have people from Virginia, the Carolinas and Florida signing up because it is fun and easy, and gets people out of the house for fun and adventure. They will all help a good cause and may even win a gift card.
— Capt. David Bacon operates WaveWalker Charters and is president of SOFTIN Inc., a nonprofit organization providing seafaring opportunities for those in need. Visit softininc.blogspot.com to learn more about the organization and how you can help. Click here to read previous columns. The opinions expressed are his own.