Easter Classic History
The Burrum Heads Amateur Fishing Club started the Easter Fishing Classic in 1991 with only a handful of families participating. Over the 25-year history, the Easter Classic has grown enormously with big crowds, thousands of dollars in prizes and giveaways, and many, many generous sponsors.
Some reasons for the success of the Easter Classic are
• due to the family nature of the event, families from all over Australia enjoy the village atmosphere, wetting a line and relaxing in our beautiful environment over the Easter weekend.
• the event is the one major activity the Club engages in each year and therefore the members are able to focus efforts and resources to ensure a memorable time is had by both locals and visiting families.
• the Organizing Committees over the 25 years has, through a combination of income generated from the previous year’s Easter Classic(s) and the generosity of our sponsors, been able to ensure an affordable family orientated fun event
Further to the popularity of the Easter Fishing Classic, families travel from all parts of Australia and from countries such as New Zealand and Singapore. Burrum Heads has welcomed many wonderful families to the region over the years.
One family from Kingaroy (2008) in particular has touched the hearts of the local community for years to come, due to financial hardships dad reluctantly sold the family boat in order to raise the funds to keep his promise to take the family to the Burrum Heads for the Easter Fishing Classic.
Knowing the fishing from shores of the Burrum River can be as fruitful as sitting in a boat, dad made the sacrifice to keep his promise and the family made it for the Easter Classic. The family enjoyed catching fish and relaxing in the village atmosphere.
Each Sunday the major super draw prize is drawn at the end of the event, as luck would have it, dads’ number was drawn and the family won a brand new boat, trailer, registration, and safety package. The sacrifice to keep a promise had the fishing gods smile on this wonderful family, who by the way still returns each year.
Local relaters are strong supporters of the event contributing prizes and use of resources to ensure the success of the Easter Fishing Classic; they too make preparations early to accommodate the needs and conveniences of our fishing friends who travel from far afield.
This especially keeps our retailers and local holiday accommodations sites busy months in advance so families can enjoy what has become a second home for many. The success of Easter Fishing Classic ensures local retailers benefit greatly from the increased revenue spent over the Easter weekend which provides our young people more opportunity for casual employment with local retailers.
Additionally the young people of our community are exposed to a strong sense and understanding of community and the important role community has for all within. The Easter Fishing Classic facilitates bringing the local community together as well as fostering stronger relationships with fellow Australians, with many returning each year.
A number of top local anglers also enjoy the fishing competition from visiting angling families so they can test their fishing skills over the three day event.
Importantly, the Easter Fishing Classic allows for the Burrum Heads Amateur Fishing Club to contribute to the small village through supporting other clubs and providing facilities and resources for the whole community and our visitors.
The Easter Fishing Classic attracts anglers of all ages and abilities and has become a top 5 event for the Wide Bay Fraser Coast Region. This is an achievement the 80 strong members of the Burrum Heads Amateur Fishing Club are very proud of.
To run the event members of the Burrum Heads Amateur Fishing Club donate their time and skills to prepare 5 months prior to the Easter fishing Classic and volunteer from Thursday to erect the event site and over the Easter weekend to deliver a safe, fun and enjoyable event.
A little known fact that club members are very proud of is due to the success of the Easter Fishing Classic.
When the Easter Classic is over for another year; members of the Burrum Heads Amateur Fishing Club looks to make contributions to strengthen our community and provide facilities to improve village lifestyle and give our visitors a relaxing and enjoyable time to remember.
Here are some of the wonderful contributions the Burrum Heads Amateur Fishing Club has been able to complete in our village due to the success of the Easter Fishing Classic.
- The building of the two rotundas’ on the event site at Lions Park, Shhhh! We are planning on doing another one soon, if we are allowed.
- A $10,000 donation to Fmr: Hervey Bay Council to lay turf, foot paths, gardens, lighting on the event site at Lions Park
- Lend resources and volunteers to the annual Progress Association Christmas Party
- Jointly run the annual Endeavour Foundations Christmas boat ride and BBQ where members donate their time and boats with the Club funding the food and fuel.
- In 2010, the Easter classic raised over $4000 for a local boy and his family who was experiencing a dangerous heart condition, this allowed the family to pay some bills, travel and stay in Melbourne to receive vital treatment and care.
- Donated to Howard Ambulance to purchase a trolley and books
- Donated $500 for trophies for the Torbanlea soccer club 2010
- Donation of $500 to Wild life rescue in 2008 to transport injured animals for treatment
- Buy the meat trays for the annual Tombola for the local church in Burrum Heads
- Buy meat trays for the local Anzacs annual march
- Annual donations of $500 to the Burrum Heads SES over the last ten years
- $500 in 2010 to the Cancer Council in memory of the President of the Toogoom Fishing Club
- Donated $500 to the Outriggers Club for paddles
- 2009 donated $250 to the bushfire appeal
- Donated to the Rural Fire Brigade to ensure their hard work
The twenty-five-year history of the Easter Fishing Classic stands as testament to the time and resources members contribute to ensuring the success of the event each year. The year on year growth of the event since 1991 has been substantial. In 2016 a total of 1471 competitors entered the event and thousands more attended the last activity, the prize giving and Super draw on Sunday afternoon.
The Club members take enormous pride in their ability to support our community in community projects and development.
As a result of the years of dedication the Club was recognized for this achievement when presented with the 2009 Fraser Coast Australia Day Community Event Award.
The Easter Fishing Classic emphasizes education and awareness. The Terms and Conditions emphasise this particularly through the catch and release classes. 81% of fish weighed-in were live and released. In the dead weigh-in classes, only one of each species can be weighed in each day. The Kid’s Clinic provides information and activities to develop sustainable fishing practices,the importance of recycling and awareness of the environmental impacts on the river systems and how it supports fish habitats. This approach echoes the Clubs position of sustainable fishing for the future of fish stocks, the sport generally, the event and our village.
Over 25 years, the Easter Classic has attracted many fantastic sponsors and without their generosity the Easter Classic would not be as successful. The achievement for the Easter Classic has been the loyalty and dedication of our more than 50 sponsors in 2016. Organizers from year to year do not know how many to cater for, but we know from history, we always go overboard.
In 1991 the Easter Classic started with only 10 children attending. Talking with the locals involved, they had a fantastic time. Over the 25-year history many parents have said if it were not for the enjoyment and excitement of their children ‘pestering’ them to return each year some would not have come back.
In 2016 the Easter Fishing Classic attracted 529 Junior entrants to the event. This was an exciting time for the Classic to prepare for the prizes and enjoyment of children and young people. Another interesting figure, in 2009 there were 74 children attend the Kids Clinic; in 2016 there were more than 250 children and young people aged up to fifteen at the Kids Clinic. The most excited, for both children and parents, were the 30 under five year olds who enjoyed splashing paints everwhere while creating sea gardens. The organizers of the Easter Fishing ClassicKids Clinic made sure that no child missed out. It seemed to be a never ending treasure trove of sponsors gifts and prizes that put big smiles on the faces of the children and their parents.