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The Torch is Passed

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The ISA has been on the front lines of conservation and youth mentoring for a number of years with some stellar events that I have been blessed to be a part of and proud to coordinate.

Each and every volunteer deserves a heartfelt thanks for making my life easier each and every time with your profound professionalism and dedication time and time again.


Which brings us to 2011.

We have a commitment to provide the Kids Casting Area at the Rosemont show, and I'm gearing up to make that happen with the show coordinators.

After that, I've decided that I will no longer be serving as host for any events going forward.

Have given a great deal of thought to this and it is a decision I've been struggling with for a couple of years now.

I will still be around to help organize and provide any assistance I can to help, but my field work is taking a year or 2 off, at the very least.

My youth efforts with Sgt. Tommy's Kids will continue, and I will attend and help as a volunteer at the Kids Fishing Day as long as it is in existence.

Hosted my first Kids Fishing Derby back in 2003, and it's been 7 years of intense scheduling that peaked this year at 10 field events.

Every one of them remarkable experiences.


Beyond that, it's up to our members to step up and accept the challenge of continuing some of the traditions we've enjoyed for so many years, if there is a feeling that they are important enough to continue.

My kids need a full-time father "practicing what he preaches", with less preaching and more "doing".

Words can't describe the void that is left in my heart over this decision, but the memories, photos and videos will always remain to remind me why we do these things.

Thanks for understanding.

I'll be here if anyone has questions or suggestions.

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Thank you Mike for all you have done over the years in the ISA!! Your name has become synonymous with ISA conservation efforts as well as being a positive force at each and every event I have ever attended and you were present. The children at your house won't be young for long so enjoy every moment you can with them, God Bless you and your family and have a Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year, Kevin Summers

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Thanks Kevin. Those words mean a great deal to me.


I'm not going to pass up the opportunity to reminisce in this thread.

Might seem a bit sappy, but this is what consumed my life for the last 7 years.


For those that were a part of this ride....feel free to chime in with your favorite memories!


Let's get it started with the infamous ISA Kids Fishing Day......


This was our second annual event, back in 2005 at Monee Reservoir.


Nothing but a child can help erase those miles...






Anticipation for the "Prize Raffle"




The cookout was legendary for this event....


A good friend of mine took it upon himself to handle all of the cooking and food layout for 4 straight years. Would arrive at 6 a.m. every year, with everything you're seeing in the photos. Pots and pans, table cloths...all of it. I'd drop the food and he'd tell me to go make memories on the lake.





I miss my Sweet Bay Ray's Meatballs!!



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These are in no particular order....just memories I'm finding that I'm especially fond of.


Marc Miller was our gracious host for Kids Casting for several years at Pat Quinn's booth at the State Fair. It was either scorching hot, well over 100 degrees, or severe storm conditions. Loved every minute of it.



<iframe width="425" height="344" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/_ZvzYJ1ZN8c?fs=1" frameborder="0"></iframe>




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An even better video, long forgotten, from 2007....original soundtrack pulled by youtube.

The new one is better anyway....





A typical year "back then".

Wash, rinse, repeat every year thereafter.


<iframe width="425" height="344" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/6y5get7BNio?fs=1" frameborder="0"></iframe>

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