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Poorman's tournament sidelined once more

Fishermen on Lake Mitchell take part in the Poorman's Fishing Tournament during the 2015 event. (Republic file photo)

After 30 years of operating Mitchell's longest running fishing tournament, brothers Dave and Tim Allen are sidelining the event for the immediate future.

For the second year in the row, the Poorman's Fishing Tournament will not take place on Lake Mitchell and both brothers cited age and time as reasons for not restarting the tournament after the duo took its first year off in 2016.

"The only way there would be a future tournament is if someone else wanted to take it over," Dave said. "Right now, I've done fishing tournaments since I was 23 years old and I'm 57 now. It's just time for someone else to do it."

The tournament, which started in 1985 and ran through 2015, took place in early June. The event included two-man fishing teams and in 2015, was limited to the first 40 teams to sign up.

In 2016, the event wasn't held in part because the Allen brothers wanted to give fish — most notably crappie populations — the opportunity to grow in the lake.

Tim, who fishes Lake Mitchell regularly, said the lake could easily support a tournament and added fishing conditions have improved in the last few years.

"Crappies have made a strong comeback," Tim said. "If someone hosted a tournament out there, every team could bring in their limit of fish and it would come down to the ounces. We had a lot of phone calls from people wondering if we'd do it again."

Tim said some guys have thought about taking over the tournament, but no one has stepped up yet. Tim added there's plenty of people interested in any tournament on Lake Mitchell and said a fundraising tournament could also be successful.

"We've had great sponsors and it's been a heck of a tournament. We filled it for many years," Dave said. "I hope someone continues this one or starts their own tournament. It's just a lot of legwork. You have to put a lot hours beforehand to make it flow right."