Presidents 2018 Season Wrap Up

Our 2018 tournament season has ended and a I must say it was a great success!

I would like to congratulate all tournament and Angler of the year winners. There were some amazing bags caught this year and some great tournament battles on the water, everyone should be proud of their efforts!

We now must start preparing for 2019…

We will again be having a year end awards banquet honoring all of your accomplishments. That’s when we will also be announcing the club fisherman of the year.
It was decided that the Banquet will be held at the River House in downtown Moline on Feb 2nd. Dinner starts at 7pm followed by awards and festivities. Menu choices will be decided at the Dec.10 meeting.
Please plan to attend and celebrate the 2018 fishing season!!

This year did have a couple of unfortunate events with the loss of 2 club long time leaders and volunteers, Don VanAcker and Tom Kespohl.
Don and Tom were part of the club since it’s creation and generously volunteered their time for numerous club duties.
Tom created and directed our Thursday circuit which we renamed the “Team Kespohl Thursday Tournaments” in his honor.
Tom’s wife Carol and son Barry, both great volunteers assisted Tom with directing tournaments and kept the Thursday morning circuit going after Toms passing. They have moved on to Texas to join family.
Don was at every meeting he was able to attend. He would show up at weigh-ins by himself to join in and volunteer to help anyway he could. Don grew great joy from being around club events and hanging out with members. These were 2 of our very best members and will be greatly missed!

We began our winter season meetings in September. These 8 off-season meetings are when we make decisions on tournament schedules and payouts, rule changes, necessary club purchases, prepare for the banquet, vote to fill club officer positions, report on finances, and decide on website changes. Essentially everything the club needs to run an efficient and successful tournament season, this is always challenging with the number of tournaments/events we manage.

All of this is accomplished by member volunteers. For the last few years we have had fewer and fewer members even show up for a one night a month meeting. We have had a grand total of 12 guys in the last two meetings.
There have been multiple members filling more than 1 club position and are being taken advantage of because no one else wants to get involved. Thank You to the 2018 volunteers who stepped up and made 2018 run as well as it did!

This year we will need new blood to step up and fill club vacancies or tournaments will have to be canceled. As of now we have no official tournament directors for any of the circuits.
We also need a club Vice President who’s sole duty is to take care of permits. I cant understate the importance that these permits be filed ASAP. No permits means no tournaments!
This club can only be as good as it’s members make it. The guys who began this club did not just show up at a ramp with a boat and fishing gear. A much smaller group of volunteers created by-laws, rules, and served as officers to produce what is one of the largest Bass Club and Tournament Circuits there is.
We have over 190 active members. If all you have time for is attending meetings that is understandable, at least you are helping out when you can by voting on issues and presenting ideas.
The meetings are the 2nd Tuesday of every month with the next being Nov.13. The meetings are held at the River House in Moline, upstairs.
PLEASE plan to attend!

Another note about our website, Bill Kennedy has done an expert job with the website redesign this year. He volunteered numerous hours on this with outstanding results.
Memberships are now preferred to be paid via the website. You must acknowledge and check the liability waiver box. This is necessary for our insurance.
Bill is also setting up a place for sponsors to sign up. Remember…. Getting sponsors is definitely an important way of helping out your club. We use this money to buy tournament necessities. All you need to do is ask businesses you frequent if they would like to be a sponsor? For $100 we’ll add them to the site and they get a membership also!. Remember to visit our sponsors when you can and mention you are with the Harvester club so they know their sponsorship is working.

Thanks for a fantastic and safe tournament year!  We hope to see all of you back for the 2019 season. Remember…Come to join your fellow members at the River House for some good food and drink and enjoy our meetings whenever you can.
Thanks for taking the time to read my 2018 HBC season summary.

I look forward to celebrating with all of you at our banquet!

Dave Ripple
HBC President