Divers, Anglers & Spin fishermen contest

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Posted by SDM on July 04, 2012 at 02:57:19:

Divers, Anglers & spin fishermen contest
A little history of the event ........

"A Unique Contest" ~~ Divers , Anglers and Spin fishermen
hold a three way contest ~~
Water World magazine (a Bob Peterson Publication)
(Source of the information)
July -August 1956
Pages 38-39 & 44


10 participants plus 2 alternates
2 weapons (spear guns or R&R) per person
7 Varieties of fish

Only top 5 fish counted for total points
* WSB, YT & BFT = 1 point per pound
* BSB = 1 point per 5 pounds
* Berries & Kelp Bass =3 points per pound
* Sheepshead = 2 points per 3 pounds

"Fisherman 1" - Owned by Eddie Mc Ewen

Catalina Island

* Six different locations

* Six different conditions; darkness, rough water, kelp, sandy bottom, blue water, cove.

DIVER PARTICIPANTS: (As Identified in article)
* Homer Lockwood- founder LACD, Landed a 75 + pound halibut a year later but never registered it- Very active in SoCal diving-Internationally recognized for his work with the Sari Indians on Isla Tiberon
* John Backus - unknown ???
* Doc Schrieber- unknown ???
* Woody Dimmel - well known in LA area..a spearfisherman of note..owned early dive shop.
* Bill Barada..Organizer of divers and Co origanizer of the contest

FYI ... A little about Bill Barada.... (a long time OC resident, social friend, fellow LA Co UW instructor, occasional dive buddy and minor mentor...)

"Bill Barada was not just a diving pioneer but one of our sport's Renaissance men, someone who had not one talent but many, who had not one career but several. He was an *spearfisherman,**inventor, writer, photographer, businessman, fireman and salesman - among other things. He was also a dive travel pioneer.

Bill was born in St. Joseph, MO, and grew up in Santa Monica, CA. He started free diving in 1935, when the sport was called "goggle fishing." In 1940 he formed the Los Angeles Neptunes, one of the first skin diving clubs in America.(from which all other Neptunes clubs were formed--LB Neptunes is still going strong today.)

In 1950, skin diving was threatened with restrictive legislation. To combat it, Barada founded the California Council of Diving Clubs, (CCDC) the first of its kind in the nation and probably the world. He also served as one of its presidents. (Bob Retherford was 3d President See www.portagequaarry.com Legends of diving -Sea Sabres Signaling system)

Bill was on the Board of Governors of the Underwater Society of America during its formative stages. He was active in legislation, conservation and safety issues throughout the country in scuba diving's early years and that interest never waned.

Since little equipment was available for early divers, Bill designed his own, forming The Bel-Aqua Water Sports Company * to produce and market it. His designs included the Bel-Aqua drysuit, an all-rubber snorkel and a CO2 speargun**. He owned and managed Bel-Aqua for seven years

(* See Exposure suits Part 11, Dry Suits,SW Diving news, June 1996, By Dr SDM page unknown- Bill made the first recreational Dry Suit)

(**see The Magnificient Gas Gun, Discover Diving, Jan/Feb 1993, pages 59-60 By Dr SDM- Bill invented the CO2 gas gun)

(** See Ode to a spear gun, Dive Bubbles (my news paper column), Nov 5, 1999, By Dr SDM)

(** See A journey into the history of spearguns, Dive Bubbles (my news paper column), Several issues, 1999, By Dr SDM)

(*** See Powerheads and Bang sticks, google title, SDM- Bill marketed the Thunderhead Power head)

(*** See No easy answer ti shark threat, Dive Bubbles (my news paper column), Oct.12, 2001, By Dr SDM)

(*** See The Bang Stick, Dive Bubbles (my news paper column), Oct.19, 2001, By Dr SDM)

All of the above mention Bill Barada and or his products--and there is considerable more in other articles by other authors.

Bill was a fireman with the Los Angeles Fire Department from 1940 until his retirement in 1962; then he served as advertising and promotion manager of U.S. Divers (now known as Aqua-Lung).

He joined the staff of Skin Diver Magazine as sales promotion manager in 1963 He became marketing manager not long after, then "retired" - again - in 1968 Before, during and for many years after he was a Skin Diver staffer, Bill wrote articles on a variety of subjects. He teamed up with Dewey Bergman, founder of the first dive travel agency, Sea & See. The two were responsible for popularizing dive travel to Mexico and Tahiti.

In the spring of 1968, Bill left his full time position with Skin Diver to become its Special Assignments Editor. He and his first wife, Harriet, set out on a 20,000 mile journey in their Dodge station wagon, pulling a 24 foot Fireball tandem-wheeled house trailer. They traveled from California to Canada and eventually ended up in Florida. Along the way, Bill explored America's popular diving areas and visited with local dive shops, clubs and councils. He wrote articles about his experiences for Skin Diver. Readers could track his progress through the country by reading his monthly reports in 1968-69.

Bills first book, "Underwater," was published by Skin Diver's owner, Petersen Publishing, in 1955. He wrote several other books, including "Mask and Flippers," an as- told-to-book featuring Lloyd Bridges and "Spearfishing Where and how" for Voit (JBL). He wrote many TV scripts for Sea Hunt and a chapter in a National Geographic book, World Beneath the Sea. He was still writing articles in 1981 but when he stopped smoking the articles stopped coming in. It seems Bill could only write when he smoked. e stopped smoking after his marriage to Ellen and stopped writing

Besides his 1967 NOGI Award for the Arts, Bill received the Florida Governor's Award for Conservation and Communication in 1976. He lived with his second wife, Ellen, in Kissimmee, FL, until her death in 1997, when he moved to Orlando.

After Bill died on October 1, 1998, his ashes were brought to California and scattered off Pt. Fermin. He is once again among the creatures and the sea he loved so well and fought so hard to protect. "

Back to the contest...


Spinners First place
Plungers: Close second

Spearfishermen: Distant third --Total points about half of the first place team--but Homer Lockwood was honored with the largest fish of the contest a 14 pound sheepshead, Woody Dimmel landed second largest a 13 pound sheepshead.

This contest proved (?)....
* Pole fishermen take more fish than Spear fishermen
* Spear fishermen take larger fish than pole fishermen
* Pole fishermen catch fish with divers close by in water
* Fish are unaffected by spearfishermen in the water
* Pole fishermen can catch fish in all conditions-darkness, rough water etc - spearfishermen need ideal conditions

Bill Barada's final quote

"As in any sport, with any group of sportsmen, application of simple rules of courtesy and consideration allowed enthusiasts of these three different methods of fishing to enjoy each others company..."



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