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Coasties go fishing

Matt DeYoung • Aug 22, 2016 at 2:00 PM

Nolan Jamieson said he’s always trying to find ways to strengthen the bond between the Coast Guard Auxiliary and the active duty Coast Guard in Grand Haven.

One of the ways Jamieson helps build relationships is through an annual fishing tournament.

On Friday, dozens of active Coast Guard members and their families gathered and fished in the Coast Guard Basin.

Dustin McClelland, Operations Petty Officer at Station Grand Haven, said the tournament is a fun night off for the active personnel at the station.

“This is the fishing contest that the auxiliary puts on for us every year, and it’s an amazing opportunity for us to take an evening off,” McClelland said. “They cook for us, so that allows the cook to go home for the evening. It’s great food, brats on the grill, and we’re all excited about trying to take home first prize.”

McClelland got off to a good start in the tournament, hauling in a 17-inch largemouth bass. He said fishing is definitely a pastime – not a primary hobby – for most of those competing.

“Completely amateur,” he said with a laugh as he tied on a new lure for his 4-year-old son, Parker. “We are mariners by trade, and amateur fishermen. When we have time and operation permits, we’ll throw in a line or two.”

Jameson, who is the Flotilla Commander for the Coast Guard Auxiliary in Grand Haven, said he enjoys creating the family atmosphere that the fishing tournament promotes.

“It’s a family gathering so that the Coast Guard Auxiliary and active duty can get their families together and bond,” Jamieson said. “We do ice cream socials, and we also work with Dustin and his crew with training. Grand Haven is pretty close knit between the auxiliary and the gold side. We do Christmas dinners for them, and I’ve even played Santa Clause at their Christmas party.”

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