FFCBC earlier in 2017

By Joey Payeur, Fort Frances Times Ltd.

The change of the calendar will bring a slight change to the scheduling of next year’s Fort Frances Canadian Bass Championship.
The 23rd edition of the annual angler extravaganza will be held from July 20-22, 2017.
While that differs by just one day from this year’s event, the switch is in regards to the tournament traditionally being held one week before the long weekend that usually kicks off August.
With the civic holiday not until Aug. 7 next year, that means keeping the tourney on the fourth weekend in July will put it two weeks in advance of the long weekend.
“The tournament committee met and decided we would rather have it sooner than later,” explained FFCBC director of angler registrations and finance Greg Gustafson, who also owns The Great Bear east of Fort Frances.
“Having it near the end of the month certainly makes it tight for business owners like me who have to take care of our month-end responsibilities,” he added.
“It’s a lot of time leading up to the tournament if you have it that late in July and suddenly, you’re into August and the summer is almost over already,” noted Gustafson.
Gustafson didn’t anticipate any kind of negative repercussions from having the FFCBC take place two weeks before the long weekend.
“I don’t think it will have any effect on registrations, other than the fact we had one team call from the U.S. already who needed to be sure about the change so they could book themselves to come next year,” he noted.
“It shouldn’t have any effect on the fishing, either.”
The alteration might even have an unexpected positive spinoff when it comes to another tourney two hours to the west.
“There’s a guy in Kenora (Bob Stapleton) who keeps running against us on the same weekend to mess things up,” charged Gustafson in regards to the KMTS Bronzeback Classic which Stapleton oversees.
“We’ve got guys who like to fish it, but want to be in our tournament, too,” he continued.
“Hopefully, if the guy keeps it on the same schedule where he’s only a week ahead of the long weekend, that will mean we can get more teams in our tournament.”