Parade of Boats Welcomed To Fort Frances

Fort Frances residents do love a parade, and the 11th Annual Fort Frances Canadian Bass Championship Parade of Boats was certainly no exception. A crowd estimated by some at close to 4500 people lined the streets of Fort Frances Tuesday evening to welcome the 136 teams competing in the catch and release fishing tournament. Deafening roars of appreciation greeted the anglers as they arrived at the tournament site, in what was the first official interaction between residents and the competitors.

Although there was a serious side to the parade, most it seemed, were just out to enjoy a wonderful evening and to welcome the anglers.

Four judges had the daunting task of picking the entries which received special recognition and cash prizes totaling $2250. Judges Richard Boileau, Nancy Daley, Greg Allan and Jackie Lampi eventually identified the Hawaiian theme on Team #85 boat operated by Chip Leer (Walker MN) and Jeff Gustafson (Kenora ON) as ‘Best Float’. The ‘Best in the Show’ award was presented to Team #17 Tom Burri (International Falls MN) and Duane Peterson (Kenora ON).

Although they didn’t take home an award, Fort Frances’ George Chabot (Team #133) won the hearts of many in the crowd. Chabot, with his second-in-command eight month old grandson Ethan, are pictured above.