The second Regional Victorian Fishing Expo reeled in more than 1000 visitors to the Prince of Wales Showground in Bendigo on the weekend of November 18-19.
The event, first staged in Horsham last year, showcases the latest in fishing accessories.
Keen angler Leo Watson went to the Bendigo event with his dad on Saturday and liked it so much he dragged his mum back there on Sunday.
He enjoyed looking around, doing the lucky dip, painting lures and winning prizes via the spinning wheel, the 12-year-old said.
"All the kids in his friendship group are into fishing at the moment," mum Kim Watson said.
"He takes the lures to school and trades them."
Organiser Peter Fedke said the expo's main aim was to showcase local fishermen and Australian-made products.
"A lot of stuff in the bigger shops, like BCF, is imported," he said.
"We're trying to get recognition for the local makers, like Outlaw Spinnerbaits."
The Myers Flat business was one of the better known Australian names, Mr Fedke said.
Its colourful handmade lures are available in BCF and are in strong demand locally.
In addition to lures, there were fishing rods, brag mats, clothing and accessories available from 44 stalls at the Prince of Wales Showgrounds.
Other attractions included fly fishing demos, activities for kids and a guest talk by former cricketer now fishing show host Merv Hughes, whose program's new season starts on December 3.
"It shows the water bugs and invertebrates that provide food for the fish and are part of the ecosystem," Andy Foudoulis from OzFish said.
"It's not terrible but we should be seeing a lot more waterbugs. It's a functioning ecosystem but lacks diversity."
For the purpose of the exercise, yabbies from a local farm had been added to the mix, he said.
OzFish were also demonstrating, via a model of real soil and grass, the importance of streamside vegetation in trapping sediment, filtering chemicals, oil and rubbish, and helping prevent erosion.
"The kids have been having a field day learning about water bugs and the ecosystems and the relationship between the vegetation and the water quality," Mr Foudoulis said.
A specially commissioned painting, Coming Together, by Eric Brown from Shepparton, which was used for the official event shirts, would be auctioned off for charity in coming days.
The organisers were also keen to promote the artist's Burrulaa Gagans Dreamtime Arts business, they said.
Mr Fedke estimated 800 to 900 people came through the doors of the show on Saturday and 450 to 500 on Sunday.
"Obviously we'd like to get those numbers up but you have to start somewhere," he said.
"And all the exhibitors have been really happy with the weekend."
He expected the event would return to Bendigo in a few years.
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