Fishing area next thing to perfect
Written by The Daily Press   
Thursday, 14 September 2006 16:05

Escanaba’s north shore boat launch just keeps getting better and better. Escanaba Interim City Manager Jim O’Toole wants to see it improved even more, and he wants your help.

The boat launch was built several years ago after much work on the local and state levels. Its need became obvious as fishing on Little Bay de Noc — both recreational and tournaments — continued to grow.

The city figured that, if we are the unofficial walleye capital of the world, then we needed some amenities to compliment it.

So the north shore boat launch was built as a great bookend to the city’s much smaller launch on Aronson Island in Ludington Park.

But, then, a bit of a problem came about, and every problem deserves a solution.

The problem: fishermen, especially children, starting fishing on the docks near the new launch, making for hazardous conditions for all involved.

The solution: construction of a fishing pier project, which was in the planning stages for the past few years, began a little over a month ago. All is going well, and the most recent report is construction is even ahead of schedule.

Funding for fishing piers, which will be located east of the north shore boat launch, came from a $293,000 grant from the Great Lakes Fisheries Trust Fund.

The facility is great, and what would really top it off, according to O’Toole, is a fish cleaning station. Anglers say the station is much needed, and would make the local fishing experience even more enjoyable.

At his first “Manager’s Call” session this month he asked for local residents to pitch in to help pay for the station.

That’s a great idea, and with all the fishing groups, Tourism and Convention Bureau, Chamber of Commerce, hotel and motel owners, and others who care about fishing and insuring everyone has a great stay in the Escanaba area, this seems doable.

O’Toole is trying to build a sense of community and teamwork. That’s a worthwhile goal. Let’s show our support for that effort by getting this station funded and built.

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