This year 525 blind & visually impaired people took over the outer banks of North Carolina for the annual VIP Fishing Tournament held Oct 20th thru 24th. More than 175 Lion volunteers and their spouses/guests helped to assist. We started off Sunday after a cookout for the volunteers setting up tables., chairs, the stage and preparing information packets for the VIP’s, getting exhibitor tables set up and the outside tent for the overflow area for volunteers to eat and also the bible study held nightly for those who don’t dance. Monday morning assignments were given out for the week such as who would help on what boat or pier and what their assignment are going to be such as baiting, scoring catch, serving meals and drinks & then of course meal assignments such as servers, runners, greeters, drink pourers, and dance monitors. Monday night the VIP’s arrived for a BBQ dinner put on by Plymouth and Columbia Lions followed by a dance or bible study. Tuesday morning everyone was up early for breakfast served by Manteo Lions at 6:30 am. Everyone takes off to boat or pier to start fishing by 9 am. Fishing ends at 3 pm. Quick freshen up and back to Wescott Park for a Fish Fry Dinner held by Wanchese Lions and yet another dance/bible study. Wednesday morning breakfast served again and seminars geared towards VIP’s held. Lunch for all on own and also everyone can visit area attractions such as the aquarium, Fort Raleigh/Elizabethan Gardens and Wright Brothers Site for free. Wednesday Night Kelly’s restaurant puts on a wonderful banquet meal with all the fine dishes and silverware. Pork loin, beans, mashed red potatoes, regular and sweet potato biscuits enjoyed by all. Then the most anticipated awards ceremony takes place. VIP’s say their goodbyes and thanks and partial breakdown of tables and chairs begins. Thursday morning everyone departs for home with some Lions helping load and store items like tables & chairs until next year. If you have never been to the tournament make plans to attend next year.
Submitted by Lion PDG Wayne Faber