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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Using my supreme Google powers I've come across the Illinois Smallmouth Alliance's site here:

http://www.illinoissmallmouthalliance.c ... itage.html

It's a nice looking site, and they have a strong conservational bent that appeals to me so I'm just curious if anyone here is a member or has had any dealings with them and what their impressions might be.
 

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They work with the Friends of the Fox on a few projects, but not actually part with them.
 

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I almost joined when I was heavily targeting river smallies. But after being around a few too many elitist members I never joined. There are some really good guys in the organization but a friend of mine was banned from the club for giving out too much information on what the club apparently thinks are their "private spots". There's other factors as to why he got the boot but none that warranted it.
 

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I had cosidered joining quite some time ago but they seem to be only wading fisherman, no boaters. They also seem to be VERY conservation minded and seem to be a nice group.
 

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jp, that really pisses me off when guys think that they own a fishing spot!! :evil: thats a bs reason for banning someone I think :)3
Joe
 

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Thanks for the clarification Bird's Nest. What I meant is that they are friends of the Fox vs. Friends of the Fox. A friend (no cap) of the Fox is anyone that likes the Fox and writes about its many virtues.

By the way guys - Any organization is going to have a few dorks in it. Fisherman are going going to do irritating things sometimes. Forgive them! C'mon it's Easter!
 

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Cluricaun said:
Using my supreme Google powers I've come across the Illinois Smallmouth Alliance's site here:

http://www.illinoissmallmouthalliance.c ... itage.html

It's a nice looking site, and they have a strong conservational bent that appeals to me so I'm just curious if anyone here is a member or has had any dealings with them and what their impressions might be.
I'm the Conservation Director for the group and can tell you first-hand that anything you have heard about "secret spots" or any other such nonsense is just that...nonsense.
Our accomplishments in conservation are up there with any organization in the state, and beyond.
We support dozens of other clubs and organizations with our conservation grant program, and our attention to promoting the sport to youth is unparalleled.

A few examples:

Last year I helped spearhead the first annual "Military Kids Fishing Day" geared specifically to kids of IL military personnel. This event is dedicated to an avid local outdoorsman that lost his life in Iraq in 2006, Sgt. Thomas M. Gilbert.
We proudly hosted 200 kids at this event and managed to introduce the sport of fishing to a usergroup that otherwise would not have gotten such an opportunity. Bass Pro donated all of the rods, reels and tackle, all of the food was donated and 1,000 bottles of water as well. Former Chicago Bear Dennis McKinnon came out to help, the Chicago Wolves provided prizes, 9FM did a live radio remote and all of the major television and radio media came out as well.
It took 7 months to plan, and by the time it was over there wasn't a dry eye in the bunch.







That's the kind of passion this club provides each and every day of the year.

Those pollution and poaching reporting signs you see on IL rivers and streams were created and paid for by the ISA.

We sponsor a section of the Kankakee River and make a commitment to clean it each and every year by picking up garbage.

We donate our time and efforts with our Kids Casting kit every year at Lt. Governor Pat Quinn's tent at the IL State Fair and IL Hunting and Fishing Days, among many other youth casting events statewide.






All of the ISA accomplishments and photos from each and every event are available online at the website.
The hard work speaks for itself.

My next project is a state-wide Adopt-A-Stream program to involve hundreds of other groups across the state to clean and monitor water quality on our rivers and streams, with an emphasis on youth group involvement.....the next generation of conservationists.

As for "secret spots".....a $25 membership fee allows each and every member to join forces with over 500 other smallmouth enthusiasts to explore every inch of every river that holds smallies in Illinois, with 3 regions from the Northwest, to Chicagoland on down to Central IL and beyond.




Where does that money go?




Mostly towards conserving these very same rivers and streams, but our bi-monthly newsletter chock full of fishing tips and locations is second to none from any group. Glossy color cover and first-rate articles from the best fishing minds in the Midwest.

I pour my heart and soul into this organization because I believe it is best equipped to make a profound difference in the quality of our rivers.
4-5 hours a night I devote to this very cause, then find the time to take my own kids fishing and the results speak for themselves out there where it counts.
My kids stuff thousands of Goodie Bags for all of these events sponsored by the ISA because they enjoy every minute of it and have met so many friends from these efforts through the years.



Say what you want about whatever garbage is being spewed out there on internet forums. Our work is done where it matters most- in the field and on the water.
Send them over to me, and I'll put our accomplishments and work ethic against anyone's, anytime.

My work from last year alone can be seen in the following videos.
Watch them all before deciding what is real life is what is mindless drivel on those other "internet fishing forums".
http://www.youtube.com/user/Heartlander2
 

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Thanks for the kind words.
I recently accepted a position as a board member of the newly formed Sgt. Thomas Gilbert Memorial Foundation, a 501c3 dedicated to "Appreciation of Youth and the Outdoors", with the intention of further promoting an outreach effort.

So many positive things are happening out there because dedicated people make it so.
Then we have a few that troll around internet forums that do nothing for anybody but themselves, claiming to be something worth giving a second thought to. The reference in a previous post in this thread is to ONE individual that had a problem with the ISA.

I only ask that inquiring minds take a closer look at who is busting their humps each and every day and THEN make an informed decision based on rational thought.

Come on out to the Fishing College tomorrow, we'll talk at length on anything that deserves discussion on all things pertaining to IL rivers and streams.
 

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Congratulations on the fine work you all do. Your club and it's members epitomize what a dedicated group is capable of accomplishing ! :)2
 

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Hi Mike,
Great work & you guys are giving WAY more back into the
System then your organization takes by a mile!

But what is your spin on Tournaments, for the record?
Maybe I happened to talk to the wrong guy on the phone?
If tournaments are a problem,
What if we stocked 5 or 10 times more fish then our club ever weighed in and released, would that be a solution?

Tony
 

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Let me first say I know Mike pretty well and we have spoke on the phone often so don't take this a slam of the ISA (I don't believe Mike will)
but I will play devils advocate here and hopefully it is seen as constructive critizism(sp?) because that is how it's meant.

When any organization does something to further our sport, whether it is conservation, organizing events, or just being helpful to those involved in our sport, they are to be commended.

I will say however Mike, that when phrases like...
Our accomplishments in conservation are up there with any organization in the state, and beyond.
but our bi-monthly newsletter chock full of fishing tips and locations is second to none from any group.
Send them over to me, and I'll put our accomplishments and work ethic against anyone's, anytime.
These statements are going to be seen, by some, as being arrogant and may give the impression that the group sees themselves, and touts themselves, as being the best.

Doing big things and letting those things speak for themself is an immense sign of greatness. IMO
I do absolutely understand though that having to hear people knocking what you do is a total pain and gives a great feeling of wanting everyone to know just what has been and is being done to help our sport.
It's always easier to listen to accolades then negativism directed at what is done.
 

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No, I understand completely what you're saying Ed.
We really do prefer to let the work speak for itself, but a few individuals wish to continually hammer anyone that doesn't fall in line with their thinking and at some point you have no choice but to defend these efforts.

Being the grandaddy of Chicago regional fishing message boards, I'm sure you know that all too well.
 

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If I can just take my fishing hat off for a second, and even though it is the weekend, and put my consultant's hat back on.

Any organization needs an exciting and compelling vision. They must believe that what they do is second to none. This is not arrogance but its pride in something worth having pride in - something important and worthwhile.

It's enthusiasm! It's the kind of thinking that kicks butt and gets stuff done. Winning teams have this dynamic.

In my opinion, there is a great deal of room in the winner's circle for people that get off their butt and do something worthwhile, particularly when it benefits others (not to mention smallies!).

The pride thing is important though, for it arouses an eager want in people to become part of something important.

By the way Mike - Make sure that when you are talking about the "mindless fishing forums" that you point out that you are not talking about CLF! Everybody here is smart and level headed.

This community rocks!
 

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lovetofish -
What you say is absolutely true but there is also the component of dealing with other human beings.
That aspect and the human nature of *I'm good too* has to be dealt with.
Any overdoing of the qualities you mentioned is sure to be, by some, perceived as arrogance.
Since we are in the age of the internet and word of mouth happens.... let's just say real fast, ;) negative comments by some can be more damaging than the old, bad news travels fast thing.

On the other hand it can be good if you are a group that keeps doing what you do, do it well, realize what the bad comments that are out there are saying, and then strive to make changes to improve those aspects which are garnering negative *publicity*

Case in point
What has happened to some participants on CLF when they are perceived as arrogant in their posts. :eek:

Some of these things I recall speaking to Mike about over the phone years ago.
He's experiencing them now and that's why I replied with again, hopefully, constructive criticism. <-- Got that word right this time
(I know, I looked it up ;) )
 

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Ed said:
I will say however Mike, that when phrases like...
Our accomplishments in conservation are up there with any organization in the state, and beyond.
[quote:2br4gtfd]but our bi-monthly newsletter chock full of fishing tips and locations is second to none from any group.
Send them over to me, and I'll put our accomplishments and work ethic against anyone's, anytime.
These statements are going to be seen, by some, as being arrogant and may give the impression that the group sees themselves, and touts themselves, as being the best.

Doing big things and letting those things speak for themself is an immense sign of greatness. IMO[/quote:2br4gtfd]

From another post!

Ed said:
To toot CLF's horn though, part of why it is most people's favorite is the fact that the closest *other* site gets less than 30% of the traffic CLF does
Remember ED? This is why I LOVE THIS Site. Freedom to speak your mind.
 

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You're right Joel.
And the reason is because of the things I've stated in this thread.
While CLF is not exempt from those who think the site stinks, the mods are jerks, the owner is a moron, and many other negative things, the mods, owner, and it's members try to do our best to not portray a negative attitude.
We're all humans though and don't always manage to get our best foot foward.
Sometimes (perhaps more than is good) certain ones post something that would be better off not said.
I KNOW you could find a few of yours that fit that description, that is of course, if they haven't already been deleted. ;)

BUT, this isn't about CLF.... so in keeping with trying not to do negative things, let's not hijack this thread.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
lovetofish said:
The pride thing is important though, for it arouses an eager want in people to become part of something important.
Wow, I had no idea this would turn out to be such a topic. I appreciate everyone's input, . I like what lovetofish says above, part of me agrees with that mindset- if you're doing it right you'll pissing someone off who isn't. Part of being and staying succesful involves stepping on a few toes, I understand that.

However that being said, the tone of the ISA supporters in this thread seems to be less surprised in negative reactions to the group and a bit more weary of defending themselves.

So, in the interest of considering my question asked and answered and stopping any more toes from being stepped on here, please close this thread. I've got enough people to contact via PM if I want to know more or discuss this further. I don't want this to become an argument.

Thanks,

Ryan / Cluricaun
 
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