It seems as if all large events kick off with a banquet of some sort or another; the 2013 Forrest Wood Cup held in North West Louisiana, hosted in a joint effort by the Shreveport / Bossier community, set a new standard for others strive towards.
Gone were the assigned seats, name plates and designated tables for city officials, Pro Anglers or the media. Instead it was more like being invited to a good friend’s home to share a meal. Everyone in the crowd was smiling; you could feel the warmth as you entered the banquet room of the Horse Shoe. My wife and I joined Mike and Laurie Cork at the table with a co-angler, a pro and the TBF president. Sitting at the table next to us was a local Judge and his family. Also attending were 46 FLW Pro Anglers with their families and friends, FLW Leadership and their families, City Officials, Red River Water way Commission, media and the list goes on; yet you were welcomed as friends from the time you walked in the door.
The food was great and plenty. The speakers were many, some long winded, some just a short note of thanks. The local weatherman gave a briefing on what the anglers can expect. Todd Meyers, “Ranger Todd” as he was introduced, covered safety concerns, lock procedures, areas that were off limits and finished with a plea to help avoid the spread of the Giant Salvania that plagues the Northwest Louisiana waterways.
The FLW AOY Andy Morgan was brought to the stage and he reflected on his great fortune to have earned this award. He took the time to thank all the anglers who kept the pressure on, in doing so they make each other even better. The show of sportsmanship continued as each angler was wished the best of luck in the event and hoped they would all be safe.
As the night went on, Hank Parker was asked to come to the stage……..It was then that all the above started to come together and the light bulb went off– the FLW operates under a different mindset.
More to Come from Hank Parker.
Fishing Never Felt So Good!