Fishing derby draws hundreds of kids

| May 3, 2021

Michael Mills, 15, caught a 15″ bass at the fishing derby held at Lake Park on May 1. (Jen Jones)

The weather was perfect for the annual fishing derby that was held at Lake Park on May 1. Registration was from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and by 10:30 a.m., an estimated 250 children were already fishing. The volunteers helping with the derby knew the number of children fishing would grow as soccer games finished.

Bob Bigrigg, from the Coshocton County Sportsman’s Association said more than $2,000 was spent on fish that were released in the lake before the fishing derby. The Friends of the Park, Coshocton County Park District, Coshocton County Sportsman’s Association, Park National Bank, Kiwanis Club and Eagles Lodge 761 all sponsored the fishing derby this year.

Bigrigg said, in addition to the fish purchased, $450 was spent on bait and they had almost $950 in door prizes to be given away. Every child that registered was put in a drawing for the door prizes, given bait to use and also received a hot dog and a drink. Prizes were given for first, second and third place in several age categories: boys and girls, ages 3-6, boys and girls ages 7-12, and one class for everyone 13–16. Ten dollar bills were also given to every fish over a certain length.

“This is one event that’s most looked forward to all year for the kids. All young kids love to fish,” said Bigrigg.

Michael Mills, 16, caught a 15” bass. “I came because it’s always a good time.” His grandfather, Jeff Queen, said Mills loves to fish and has been fishing since he was about 2 years old. Three year old Aynalee Wallen said, “I just wanna catch a fish.” She was proudly using a My Little Pony fishing pole. Her mom, Aaron Smith and a friend, James Smith, brought her to the derby. Aaron said, “It’s a great time to make fun memories with her.”

Dallas M., 8, was excited to catch a fish. “I want to catch a catfish cause I heard they are ugly and I want to see.” When asked how big of a fish he wanted to catch, he replied, “Oh – probably like 20 pounds.” His friend, Jayce Rose, 7, was also thinking about catching a catfish, but he would be happy if he caught one that was 10 pounds. “I like to fish because when I catch one, I get really excited.” Braylon Stine, 10, said it was his first time at the fishing derby. “I like hanging out and catching fish. I’m hoping to catch a bass.”

Category: Sports, Youth

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