NIPIGON – Just because the summer season has come to an end, it doesn’t mean that the region is done with enjoying outdoor activities.
The annual Nipigon Fall Fishing Festival is in its 60th year and celebrates one of the region’s favourite pastimes: fishing.
Saturday's events started off with a parade through town that had residents and visitors lining the streets and Matt Dupuis, co-chair of the festival said that the support the festival receives just keeps getting better every year.
“Well, weather helps. It's nice weather so that brings everyone out. Usually after the parade, everyone comes into the arena to come check out the booths,” he said. “We are totally sold out for space for vendors, both food and artisans. So yeah, hats off to the community, they did a great job.”
The floats had a variety of different themes this year, including foreign politics as one float appeared to display Former U.S. President Donald Trump with two incarcerated women.
“We leave it open so, you know, we encourage anyone to enter a float,” said Dupuis. ”We're a nonpartisan organization, so I mean, it was all for fun. I was surprised to see the one float for sure.”
It was unclear whether the display was in support of or against Trump’s policies.
After the parade, attendees were invited into the community centre to browse booths from local and regional organizations and participate in a penny auction.
Saturday also featured a one-day salmon derby with a first-place prize of $1,000.
Over the past 60 years, the festival has brought in hundreds of thousands of dollars to the community, one of the most important aspects of the festival, according to Dupuis.
"As most, you know, not-for-profit organizations, we rely heavily on major events. I also sit as the past president of the curling club and I'd say 25 per cent of our operating income comes from this weekend,” said Dupuis.
“So it's big for the curling club, big for Elks, big for the Legion and also for the golf course. It's events like these that help us keep the doors open.”
The festival continues throughout Labour Day Weekend and a full schedule of events can be found online.