Organizers, Supporters Plan to Cast a Line in Virtual Tournament to Fight ALS

Updated: May 21, 2020 10:43 PM

ALS doesn't stop in the wake of the pandemic which is why the annual Kolar Toyota ALS Fishing Tournament decided to not put their event on hold. Instead they're asking anglers to fish from waters close to their home Saturday May 30.

Instead of being held on Island Lake in Duluth anglers can fish on any public water close to their home to participate in the tournament.

"Now, people can literally fish from all over the world," said two-time World Series Champion and Minnesota Twins legend Kent Hrbek. Somebody down in Alabama who wants to join the tournament that has somebody in their family with ALS can actually join our fishing tournament now," he added.

"You can certainly fish in a boat, but you don't have to. You can fish in a pontoon, in a canoe, a kayak, off a pier if you'd like," said tournament director Blake Kolquist. "It's something that we're hoping to reach more people really from anywhere that can participate."

The tournament will look a little different as it goes virtual. The format is catch and realease and will use the app FishDonkey for recording all fish measurements. Anglers can now fish for walleye, bass, northerns, and crappies.

This year would have marked the 25th annual year of the tournament. Although they'll miss gathering together in person, their fight to help find a cure for ALS is their driving force for continuing to organize an event like this no matter the circumstance.

"If it was the first or the 150th or 132nd, people with ALS still need funds raised," said Hrbeck.

"We're passionate about what we're doing and we're really trying to make a difference and continue moving forward," added Kolquist.

Hrbek’s father, Edward, died in 1982 of ALS at the age of 53. Kent has helped raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for the cause.

For non-anglers, there's an online auction to help contribute to the cause.

Visit here for more information: Kolar Toyota Fishing

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