KEEN fishers should mark the annual VMR Hervey Bay Family Fishing Competition as a definite for their diaries.

The 23rd annual competition organised by the Hervey Bay Boat Club Fishing and Social Club will be held from Thursday, March 5, to Sunday, March 8, at Dayman Park in Pulgul St, Urangan, Hervey Bay.

There will be hundreds of prizes to win and you don't even have to catch a fish to be in the running for most of them.

Many entrants don't fish at all and simply go along to enjoy the atmosphere at the presentations, indulge in the food and refreshments, perhaps win $5000 cash or an $8000 boating package, a computer, one of the hundreds of prizes in the lucky draws or the $1000 cash give-away drawn every day, sponsored by the Boat Club.

Draws and presentation times are Thursday, Friday and Saturday 6pm to about 8pm and Sunday noon to about 3pm.

Entry fees are seniors $40 and juniors $10.

There will be a licensed bar, and this year's catering will be done again by members of the Rotary Club of Hervey Bay Sunrise and they will provide plenty of hot food for everyone.

The live weigh-in will again be sponsored by Fisherman's Corner Hervey Bay, with eligible species flathead (live only), bream and whiting.

Species of fish eligible for the dead weigh-in are whiting, blackall, bream, golden trevally and coral bream, and also for the seniors an "any other species category with $1000 for the best fish," (excluding flathead, cod, Spanish mackerel, shark and ray).

Thanks to the excellent support and generosity of local business houses, the competition has been a huge success each year, so make plans now to enter this increasingly popular event.

Entry forms are available at tackle shops in Hervey Bay and Maryborough, at the Chronicle offices and at the Boat Club and Sporties or phone 41946138 or see www.fishingcompherveybay.org.au.