FUN DAY 2013

Report by David Marshall

Photographs, unless otherwise credited, by Paul Barrow of Caer Urfa (South Shields) Aquarist Society

On Sunday 8th September, 2013 the Ryedale Aquarist Society held their annual 'Fun Day' at the tranquil, and very appropriate venue of Middleton Memorial Hall, Pickering, North Yorkshire.

Middleton Village Hall
The beauty of the Middleton village pond fit in nicely with a fishkeeping theme. Photograph by David Marshall

The aim of 'Fun Day' is to create a friendly atmosphere so that everyone present has a very enjoyable time.

Our guests begin to arrive

One of the highlights of the day is that experts in various fields are invited to join us and give talks on different aspects of the aquarium hobby.

Martin giving his talk. Photograph by David Marshall

Our first guest speaker today was reptile and amphibian expert Mr. Martin Lees. Martin talked on the subject of creating decorations for vivarium use, telling his audience, step-by-step, exactly how to obtain and prepare the various items used. He brought along some newly created backgrounds so that the audience could see the finished articles. Martin then gave advice on the best and easiest amphibians and reptiles to keep for those of us not yet into this side of the hobby. He also had a wonderful surprise for us as he brought along a selection of his favourite 'pets' and as our photographs show, the members of our audience were able to hold some of these adorable creatures.

Two of Martin's 'pets' are much admired

David prepares to start his talk


Our second guest speaker was Aquarium Gazette magazine Editor Mr. David Marshall. When several local non-fishkeeping groups asked David if he would go along and do a presentation on how to keep tropical freshwater fish, the talk 'The wonderful world of tropical freshwater fishes' was put together. This was the first time the talk had been given to people already involved in the hobby and David was really pleased with the reaction from the audience.

Andrew prepares his PowerPoint presentation. Photograph by
David Marshall

Our third guest speaker was Andrew Mcleod. Andrew is the Fish Curator at The Deep Public Aquarium at Hull. Andrew took us through the reasons why Hull was chosen as the 'host City' for The Deep; the creation of the Aquarium building and exhibits; the educational resources on offer; the challenges of moving forward; the problems of helping local people find homes for large fish they no longer want and the various aquatic conservation programmes that The Deep are involved with. I think that it was the latter that had me the most amazed as I had never realised the amount of aquatic conservation work that Andrew and fellow staff members are involved with.

As always, the Mini-Open Show part of 'Fun Day' caused much interest and our thanks go to YAAS 'A' Class Judge Mick Price for his sterling work in judging the nine fish classes and the 'eggshibit'. The following photographs show a small variety of the various egglaying and livebearing species that were entered in the Show.

For 'eggshibit', the competitors take a boiled egg and then use all of their artistic flare to build a 'fun fish' around it. Our photographs show the first three placed 'eggshibits'.

Janice Barrow's Egg and tomato Clownfish took first place
Frank Tolomeo's Butterflyfish took second place.

Sue Marshall's Flowerhorn cichlid took third place

Although Ryedale A.S. is not an actual showing Society, our members have had great success on the showing benches throughout Northern England in 2013. This continued today with Frank Tolomeo winning the 'Fun Day' trophy for the person gaining the most points from fish shown at the event.

Frank receives the 'Fun Day' trophy from '
Fun Day' Secretary David Marshall


Here we see some of our other prize winners.

Sue Marshall
Janice Barrow. Photograph by Sue Marshall

Paul Barrow. Photograph by Sue Marshall


Frank Tolomeo was also busy manning the sales table and here we had an excellent selection of livebearing fishes, 'L' numbered loricarins, aquarium plants, variously sized aquariums and blackwater tonics for sale.

Frank early in the day preparing the sales table
Photograph by David Marshall.

This year Sue Marshall chose to do her 'fun quiz' on the subject of places. The 30 questions were a mixture of aquarium fish, natural world, sport, entertainment and general knowledge with the answer to each a place e.g. name a member of the Corydoras elegans grouping --- (3) ----- (4) with the answer San Juan. Well done to the husband and wife team of Pauline and Les Barker from Hull A.S. who got the most correct answers.

Pauline and Les Barker won the 'fun quiz
Photograph by David Marshall

Of course 'Fun Day' would not be complete without its legendary shared lunch and we thank all those present for all of the sweet and savoury food items brought along. Andrew Mcleod said, 'David, I have never been so well fed when invited to do a talk'.

Finally, I wish to thank everyone who came along for their friendship on the day, our guest speakers for keeping us well entertained, all those who brought along fish for the show and food for our feast and to our sponsors for providing a wonderful array of show and raffle prizes.

Please support our 'Fun Day' sponsors:-

Aquarium Munster Aquarium Products

Dr. Bassleer Aquarium Fish Foods

Aqua One Aquarium Fish Foods


Aquarium Gazette CD Magazine