MIDLAND DAILY NEWS Ashley Schafer, Ashley.Schafer@hearstnp.com Published
PRESS RELEASE – After facing safety concerns surrounding the coronavirus pandemic, leaders at Camp Fish Tales have decided to move forward with the Annual Fish Races fundraiser on Aug. 21.
The event is the largest fundraiser of the year for the barrier-free, accessible camp located in Pinconning. Executive Director Shannon Forshee said the money raised allows campers with disabilities who cannot afford camp tuition to participate. All the proceeds will benefit Camp Fish Tales’ programs, scholarships, and camp maintenance.
“(Campers are) able to do things that every other person can do because of our adaptations to our activities and watching someone who has limited use of their arms and legs climb a rock wall — it is absolutely heartwarming when they make it to the top and are able to do that,” she said
Guests can purchase tickets for $25, which includes dinner and the opportunity for pari-mutuel betting on wooden fish. Six fish, which are decorated by different local groups, will race in each heat on a custom track. Tickets for the Fish Race event are available at www.campfishtales.org or by calling 989-879-5199.
New this year, are honorary chairs of the event — Chris and Molly Girard. Chris is the CEO of Do-All, Inc., which serves individuals with a disability and Molly serves as the administrator for the Episcopal Diocese.
“They have given back so much to your community,” Forshee said about the Girards.
In their free time, the Girards operate GIRARD Investments, which is a residential real estate business that manages more than 60 rental units. Chris was also recently elected as a city commissioner for Bay City. Together, they have four children, five great-grandchildren, and have been foster parents to several children.
The event will be bring-your-own-beverage-style, so guests are welcome to bring their own drinks, including alcoholic drinks in a cooler.
Guests must be 18 or older to attend. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. and dinner is served at 6 p.m. at the main lodge at Camp Fish Tales, 2177 E. Erickson Road in Pinconning.
Tuition– Must be paid in full 2 weeks prior to camper arrival unless part of Community Mental Health.
Physical Exams– Every camper is required to have a physical within a year of their arrival at camp. Need a physical form? Under registration, create a profile, under health history click physical form.
Medication– Must be brought in original bottles and turned into the nurse.
Camp Fish Tales Gear– Bring cash for the camp store! CFT sells t-shirts, sunglasses, snuggle buddy bears, notebooks and much more!
Snack Shack– $2 a day is plenty for our daily trips to the Snack Shack!
Packing List– Found at www.campfishtales.org & scroll down.
Check-in: Upon arrival, we have 3 stations:
Under pavilion. Unload luggage (remove meds). Pull a number & staff will call you up.
Take your number, meds, and cash for the store with you to the Nurses Station. The staff will call your number.
Walk your camper back to the cabins where you will find your luggage and a counselor will be there to greet you. Walk your camper back to the lodge for an activity.
Join us on Friday, March 20th for this crowd-pleasing one of a kind event which includes pari-mutual betting on wooden fish. Doors open at 5:30, dinner served at 6:00, the betting starts at 6:30 pm sharp. Six fish will race in each heat on a custom track. Admission begins at $25.00 per person and includes dinner and an evening of gambling fun. The event is BYOB. Must be 18 to attend and place bets.
At Camp Fish Tales’ annual Fish Races Fundraiser, the camp presented the 3rd annual Ben Wackerle “Keep the Fire Burning Award” to Thomas N. Thelen, a long-time supporter, fundraiser, and board member of Camp Fish Tales.
Wackerle was one of the “super friends” who were the reason behind the start of Camp Fish Tales. Wackerle died in September 2016 at age 44. One of the traditions at camp is to take the ashes from the last camp fire of the week and restart the first campfire of the season with those ashes. Hence, keeping the spirit of camp alive and “Keeping the Fire Burning.”
“Mr. Thelen has been instrumental in the construction of new structures at camp as well putting in procedures that helped bring Camp Fish Tales to the next level,” Executive Director Shannon Forshee said. “His commitment to camp has made him the recipient of the Ben Wackerle Keep the Fire Burning award.”
Bring your family and run or walk through our beautiful wooded campus and be one with nature.
Our Open house takes place just before the race from 12-2pm and this event begins at 2pm. Feel free to join us before the race for our open house. We will have tours of camp, activities for the kids and an outdoor picnic style lunch.
Our 5K is open to individuals, families and pets (pets must be leashed and friendly).
$20 a runner or $50 a family of four. Kids 16 and under are $15.
Check-in begins at 1pm. Race begins promptly at 2pm.
You will receive an email after registering to get age of each participant. Click on the link below for additional details and registration information:
The trails at camp are so beautiful. Click on the link for details and registration: