The Ontario Bass Federation youth program is set up to get boys and girls interested in Bass fishing and fishing in general. The program consists of all aspects of fishing including joining a junior bass fishing club with different areas to enjoy. Each club has different things they get involved with including tournaments, conservation projects, Casting Kids as well as helping out with senior club events and fishing shows. Joining a junior club entitles them to participate in all of these different events and also gives them the chance to fish in three tournaments throughout the year to try to qualify for the World Junior Bass Fishing Championships held in the United States each year.
To fish in one of these tournaments the junior must be 11 years of age and no older than 18 years of age. They can join a club under 11 and still receive fishing related information from B.A.S.S. and participate in all other events held by the junior club but are not able to fish in these tournaments. The main objective of joining this program is to let the kids have fun, and enjoy the outdoors and to get some knowledge of bass fishing.
The Ontario Bass Federation junior clubs are highly dedicated to conservation. As a member of a junior club a junior member must do at least one conservation project per year of any kind. In the past junior clubs and members have done many different kinds of projects including purple loosestrife management and removal, spawning boxes for Bass, river bank cleanups, Lake cleanups, park cleanups just to name a few. They have also done habitat construction for fish in a couple of lakes in Ontario under the supervision of the Ministry of Natural Recourses and Ocean and fisheries. These habitat projects consist of building and placing structure on the bottom of a lake such as Christmas trees, wood pallets, branches placed in cement in buckets, as well as building and placing a store bought structure known as Fish Habs that are made by Berkley fishing products. These Fish Habs are made of old discarded fishing line that is melted down and made into a build able material that has the consistency of plastic. This is an excellent way of getting rid of unwanted fishing line so it doesn’t end up in land fill sites or in our lakes.
Keeping our water and lands clean is a very important part of the junior program and with the kids doing cleanups they can be sure to have clean water and lands in the future.
Each year the Ontario bass Federation youth have the opportunity to fish and compete in three organized junior Bass tournaments. Two are qualifying tournaments and one is a mentoring tournament.
The mentoring tournament is the first tournament of the year and is set up as follows:
This first tournament of the year will be held on Gloucester Pool out of Bush's Marina on Sunday July 18th. This is a fundraising tournament and assists us with annual operational costs for the junior program and helps raise funds needed to host these events.
Here’s how it Works:
At this team tournament you will be asked to bring your boat to fish with two juniors for the day. Unlike our regular Junior Bassmaster events, you are able to fish yourself and are eligible for cash payouts at the end. The primary goal however is to teach the kids what you know about bass fishing throughout the day. You will serve as their mentor for the day – explaining lure choices, techniques, patterns, fish care, and conservation etc. There will be a five fish limit per team/boat. The team with the heaviest five bass at the end of the day wins!
There will be a $50 entry fee for each member of a three person team...i.e. the two juniors and you the senior member. That $150 per team will be used for cash paybacks at weigh-in for the top three teams. Your fuel for the day will be paid for by the parents of the kids in your boat.
Last year this tournament went over extremely well with all of the kids and parents … and the boaters themselves who found the experience extremely rewarding. Everyone had a great time!
Our Junior Bassmasters and their parents really do appreciate the dedication of Ontario’s Senior Bassmasters when they participate in these tournaments. Although some of these kids do fish a fair bit with their parents, others do not – yet they all have a common bond and are crazy about bass fishing. Despite their varying skill levels, your help to get these kids out on water to combine “Education, Fun and Competition” is proving to be a successful format and one that our Federation Nation is proud to promote.
Gloucester Pool is also the site of the first qualifying Junior Bassmaster tournament for 2010; on the 25th of July so we are happy to give the kids the opportunity to learn on the same body of water as their first qualifier. Their third and final tournament of this year will be on Bass Lake in Orillia on August 15th.
Ontario Junior Bassmasters Do More Than Just Fish:
Our junior members meet regularly just like senior clubs and at each meeting there is a concerted emphasis on teaching basic bass fishing fundamentals. We also stress good sportsmanship and a high standard of ethics for our young anglers is compulsory. Our members are not only expected to each perform their own annual conservation project but also to complete a written report on that project. These are all turned over to the OBFN’s Conservation Director – Wil Wegman who reviews each project.
At each of these two major qualifying tournaments, the Juniors are expected to be able to test their skills without the help of the adult Bassmasters who volunteer their time and bass boat to basically chauffer two keen young Bassmasters around the lake. Once again, your fuel costs for the boat will be taken care of by the parents.
In 2010 don’t miss the boat – sign up today and help shape the direction of our Junior Bassmasters for tomorrow.
Thank you for your support of the Ontario Junior Bassmaster program!
Ontario Bass Federation Nation
Youth Director (team)
Our 2010 season is off to a great start with the Junior Bassmasters adding a few new faces and losing one of thier best anglers in Jake Sasnowski. Jake finally out-grew us and is now heading to the senior leagues, fishing for Port Perry Bassmasters. Jake is a two time contender at the Junior World Championships.
Barrie Bassmasters new youth director Adam Bull, along with OBFN Youth Director Gerry Heels would urge anyone that might be able to volunteer as a boater to please contact them as soon as possible to ensure enough boats for our juniors.
Gerry Heels 705 726 3190 or email
Two Juniors preparing for Team Ontario Eastern Divisional's
Ryan Finney (left) and Mark Morrison (right) have some unfinished business in Connecticut this summer during the Junior Eastern Divisional's on Candlewood Lake. Mark, winner of the 11 to 14 years olds and Ryan winner of the 15 to 18 year old juniors will represent the Ontario B.A.S.S. Federation Nation juniors against seven states champions, for the opportunity to move on to the JWC later this year.
This will be Mark's third time to the FNC and Ryan's second. Mark is hoping for third time lucky as he fell just short of winning on Lake Simcoe last July. Ryan is an accomplished angler and should give our neighbors to the south a run for their money. Both will be competing again this year in the Ontario Junior Qualifications.
July 18th Mentor Tournament Gloucster Pool Bushes Marine
July 25th Qualifying Tournament G-Pool Bushes Marine
August 15th Qualifying Tournament Bass Lake Provincial Park
Thanks for Supporting our junior program