The auction of an original watercolor painting by famed marine artist Guy Harvey depicting 11 inshore and offshore gamefish common along the New Jersey coast will highlight what’s sure to be a special evening for fishing enthusiasts who will gather at 7 p.m. on Friday, April 20, 2012, for the 15th Annual Fund Raising Banquet and Auction hosted by New Jersey’s IGFA representatives including Pete Barrett, Bill Feinberg, Rich Keller, Jeff Merrill and Gene Nigro.  Doolan’s in Spring Lake Heights will again be the venue for the event benefitting IGFA’s Junior Angler and Conservation Programs.  Last year 175 guests attended and over $20,000 was raised for these IGFA programs.  In 14 years this event has raised over $200,000 making it one of IGFA’s most successful fund raising events.  “We’re proud to have five representatives of IGFA such as Pete, Bill, Rich, Jeff and Gene,” noted Rob Kramer, IGFA’s president.  “They have set the bar for the IGFA Representative program world-wide and we are honored to have them as part of the organization.  Our staff is looking forward to once again attending what has become one of the premier events on IGFA’s annual calendar.”

A deluxe hot and cold buffet dinner will be followed by the popular Fishing Tackle Bonanza Auction where thousands of dollars worth of fishing tackle including rods, reels, line and lures donated by major tackle manufacturers and local tackle shops, plus jewelry, marine artwork and other fishing related items and accessories will be given away.  Numerous fishing trips have also been donated by charter boat captains from Sandy Hook to Cape May.  Grand Raffle prizes include a Shimano Talica reel and Trevala rod combo plus assorted Butterfly Jigs and PowerPro line, a David Wirth sculpture and a limited edition striped bass print by Stanley Meltzoff.  A silent auction will also be held and will include fishing trips and several high-value items.  Every attendee will receive a commemorative limited edition Guy Harvey shirt beautifully illustrated with the artwork of the original watercolor Guy created specifically for the event.

Reservations are limited to the first 225 people and can be made by sending a check for $75 for each person drawn to IGFA and sent to: IGFA Banquet, c/o Jeff Merrill, 918 Houston St., South Plainfield, New Jersey 07080.  For further information contact Jeff Merrill at 908-451-1110 or via e-mail at jeffmerrill2@verizon.net.

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