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Hundreds expected for herring-sale fundraiser for children with cancer

A $20 donation gets you 20 pounds of herring, or 10 pounds for $15.
Fresh herring are smoked at Finest at Sea on Erie Street, where 300 to 400 kippered herring breakfast sandwiches will be handed out free to those who turn out Saturday to make a donation to charity in return for fresh fish. BOB FRAUMENI

Heads up for herring lovers: Buckets and bags full of freshly caught herring from the Gulf of Georgia are going on sale Saturday at 8 a.m. in James Bay.

Herring will be sold by ­donation at Finest At Sea Ocean Products at 27 Erie St.

A $20 donation gets you 20 pounds of herring, or 10 pounds for $15. You can bring your own bucket — some people will arrive with several — or take the fish home in supplied bags.

The herring sale is a fundraiser to support young patients being treated for cancer at B.C. Children’s Hospital.

B.C. fishermen and others in the marine sector work together every year to catch 50 tonnes of herring, allowed under a special permit from Fisheries and Oceans Canada. Between 10 and 20 per cent of the herring will go to Victoria, while the remainder will go to a similar fundraiser in Steveston, Bob Fraumeni, owner of Finest at Sea, said Thursday.

Captain Kevin Smith was out with his Western Investor boat and Mitch Ponack with Ocean Cloud this week scooping up ­herring for the charity sale.

This year, the cumulative total of money donated could top $1 million, Fraumeni said.

Fisherman Phil Eidsvik was the driving force for the initiative 12 years ago. His daughter Nicole was diagnosed with cancer at age 14 and died at 17.

And Fraumeni will be behind the grill at the company’s food truck, serving up free kippered herring breakfast sandwiches for the 300 to 400 people anticipated to show up for the charity sale. He said he’s been fine-tuning his recipe, which includes a potato latke, egg, herring and “secret sauce.”

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