COVID-related concerns result in rescheduling national competition in Cookeville, Tenn.
COOKEVILLE – Top anglers from across the country are delaying their travel plans as the 2021 U.S. Kayak Open and accompanying events have been postponed to next year. Previously scheduled for next month, Sept. 9-12, the event hosted by USAngling, in partnership with the Cookeville-Putnam County Visitors’ Bureau, will now take place April 29 – May 1, 2022.
The decision was made following continued feedback from local officials, USAngling and the kayak fishing community. The safety of the anglers, which includes international travelers, exceeds the need to have the competition at this time. Both parties also want to do their part to reduce the spread of the COVID virus in the Cookeville area.
“We want to do what is best for our competitors as well as our host community of Cookeville, Tennessee,” said Tony Forte, USAngling Co-founder and USA Kayak Fishing President. “Postponing the Open will push the World Championships to 2023, but will also offer more time for international travel restrictions to, hopefully, be lifted and back to business as usual. Cookeville, Tenessee and its surrounding waters are such an amazing venue, and we look forward to holding these events there.”
The U.S. Kayak Open and FIPSed Kayak Fishing World Championship were awarded to Cookeville-Putnam County as a host destination in late 2020 with official announcement and planning beginning in January of this year.
Set to take place Center Hill Lake and area rivers, the event was anticipated to welcome 150 to 250 attendees along with fans and families.
“The southern hospitality of Cookeville continues as our partners there are willing to adjust the contract to allow for a safer and more successful event as we push these dates to next spring,” said John Knight, USAngling International Organizer.
For local businesses, organizations, or clubs looking to volunteer, sponsor or get involved with the 2022 or 2023 USAngling events in the Cookeville area, including a Youth Angler Education Day, contact Knight at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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