Wounded Warriors on the Water slated June 8 on Pewaukee Lake
The 2019 Wounded Warriors on the Water (WWOTW) bass tournament and fundraiser will take place on June 8 on Pewaukee Lake and will feature $10,000 in cash and prizes, with all proceeds funding projects for Wisconsin Hero Outdoors (WHO).
Since the inception of the tournament five years ago, WABTA has raised more than $110,000 for nonprofit groups. This year, organizers are hoping to raise over $30,000 for the group that supports veterans, active military and first-responders.
There will be plenty of tournament anglers fishing the event, but a relatively new format in how prizes and cash are awarded makes it possible for even a novice angler to cash in.
Ryan Chuckel, who has played a key role in not just starting the event but in making it such a huge success, said that anyone who likes to fish should consider coming out.
“The event is designed to be fun for tournament anglers but also appealing to those with little or no tournament experience,” he said. “Rather than a typical five-fish weigh-in at the end of the day, we have four weigh-ins throughout the day. Each two-person team can weigh one bass per weigh-in period. At each weigh-in, we award cash prizes for the five biggest bass, up to $500 for the heaviest bass at each weigh-in. At the end of the day, the team that weighs the big bass of the day wins $2,500.”
Over the years, the funds raised from the tournament have gone to various non-profit groups – with all being related to helping out military veterans and the majority of the money being applied to projects right here in the state. This year, Wisconsin Hero Outdoors is on deck.
“Over the course of the six years of this tournament, we have worked with three charitable organizations,” Chuckel said. “It’s important to us that we always try to keep the money raised in-state.”
The CEO and co-founder of WHO said that their mission is to help connect veterans, first-responders and their families to outdoor activities in Wisconsin while supporting existing 501c3 organizations.
“In Ryan’s search for a partner organization that would be an active contributor to the operation and outreach of Wounded Warriors on the Water, he found Wisconsin Hero Outdoors online and through word of mouth in the veteran and fishing community,” said Falkner. “We operate the organization out of Pewaukee, where the tournament is held so the logistics made sense right away.”
The money raised at the WWOTW tournament will go to the purchase of adaptive fishing kayaks, one or two trailers, fishing, hiking, camping and archery equipment to supplement their expanding field operations in the Milwaukee, Madison and Lake Geneva areas.
The tournament starts at 6:30 a.m. and ends at 2:30 p.m. Registration ends at 8 p.m. on Thursday, June 6. Teams can enter online or via mail. Details are available at wwotw.org.
The fundraiser runs from 12-6 p.m. at Gina’s Sports Dock, with bucket raffles and silent auctions and great prizes, including Packer tickets and memorabilia, fishing gear and gift packages from local businesses.