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Redneck Fishing Tournament canceled due to COVID-19 pandemic

A local fishing event is the latest victim of COVID-19 cancellations.
Credit: WQAD

BATH, Illinois — Organizers of Bath, Illinois's Redneck Fishing Tournament have decided to cancel the event due to the ongoing pandemic.

The annual party and fishing event that draws people from across the state and country to the small town of Bath in Mason County was scheduled to take place in early August, but the COVID-19 has put a stop to it.

“We hate to have to do it, but there’s so much uncertainty. It’s best to play it safe,” said Betty DeFord, who started the tournament more than a dozen years ago to protest the invasive species of Asian carp that infested the Illinois River.

“Plus, there’s just no way we were ever going to get all those fish to wear masks or social distance,” DeFord joked. 

Deford says she remains committed to keeping the tournament going and hopes that everyone remains safe and healthy to make it to the 2021 tournament.