YORK – This year’s York Adopt a Pet Benefit Fishing Seminar offers a special opportunity not seen in any of the event’s previous years.
Marty Hughes, a high school principal, BASS Pro Shops team kayak instructor/outfitter and tournament fishermen in these affordable, stealthy and versatile vessels, has agreed to bring one to the Cornerstone Events Center the evening of Wednesday, Feb. 19.
Think of it as kayak fishing show-and-tell on steroids.
Hughes said his 45-minute presentation will include the story of how kayak fishing began and the many benefits the sport makes available.
‘It’s growing so fast,” he said. Retired once, Hughes said he was “hoping to do this full time, but God said, no, you’re going to do some more education” at the middle and high school levels.
Don’t bet against his ‘full time’ kayaker dream being realized when retirement No. 2 arrives.
Hughes operates mostly in southeast Nebraska where Duck Creek Lake is his go-to for guiding clients and conducting fishing schools.
This past year his fishing school offered a separate clinic each for sunfish, catfish and bass.
“They can come out and learn specifically about those species,” he explained.
Hughes began his kayak experience simply enough. When paddling for exercise in shallow water he couldn’t help seeing fish – big ones in many cases – within a couple feet of his boat. Clearly, they had no idea he was there.
A light bulb clicked on in this fisherman’s head and his outdoor passion was born.
One of the things he enjoys most, he said, is how “It brings you face to face with the fish” when fighting them from a kayak.
Learn more about Hughes here: @kyakjak Instagram or his website kayakjak.com.
Showalter (fishshowalters.com) has been an annual fixture at the York seminar for years and has built an impressive list of clients from the area as a result. Originally, YAAP seminar founder Bob Roth of York scheduled the event on this specific Wednesday each February so his Canadian friend could drop in on the York seminar before setting up his booth at the Omaha Boat Sports and Travel Show the next day.
Showalter dropped Omaha a few years ago, but still comes faithfully to York.
Operating out of his float plane base near Ear Falls, Ont., Showalter has exclusive access to 14 fly-in-only lakes scattered across thousands of square miles of trackless wilderness.
Showalter, who is bringing one of his float-plane pilots, Kyle (Ginger) Taylor, for York folks to meet will present an introduction followed by a 20-minute video of fishing in Canada and then answer questions.
Showalter, as he has done every year, is donating a free fly-in fishing adventure for two to the YAAP cause, to which all proceeds are given every year.
Tickets for chances to win the trip available at the YAAP shelter, from Roth, Matt Leif at Cornerstone Bank, Craig Heskett at York State Bank or at the door.
Nebraska Game and Parks fishing outreach director Daryl Bauer is coming to share his expertise and to hand out the newest pamphlets and brochures, including the 2010 Fishing Forecast based upon hands-on sampling studies done by fisheries biologists the year before in dozens of lakes across the state.
A meal will be served and adult beverages made available for free will donations.