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Dover hosts Youth Fishing Derby

By Madison Butkus
Hometown Weekly Reporter

Dover Parks and Recreation hosted their annual Youth Fishing Derby this past Sunday at Channing Pond for Dover resident families. Channing Pond was packed with little ones and their families to see who could catch the largest fish. Awards were handed out to those who did catch the biggest fish within three different categories: 6 years old and under winners were Harrison R. and Noah B., 7-10 years old winners were Dominic W. and Jay N., and 11-15 years old winners were Max K. and Lauren A.

No matter what size fish was caught, all registered participants were automatically entered for the chance to win lots of additional prizes, such as tackle boxes, spin and power baits, fishing poles, and so much more. These prize winners were picked randomly throughout the event so there were multiple chances for those to win.

The director of Dover Parks and Recreation, Mark Ghiloni, was there to help kiddos sign in and explain the rules of the event. He stated, “We do this every year. It used to be in April but we moved it to May, hopefully to get nicer weather. We have over 50 kids participating today, that is just those who pre-registered but more will come as well. We’ve got trophies and raffles and a bunch of stuff throughout the day. It’s definitely one of our most fun events. Once they catch their fish, they will bring it up here to get measured and we will be good to go.”

Throughout the day, a variety of different fish were caught like catfish, pike, and bass. In addition to having a fun day of fishing, youngsters were also taught important lessons about how to catch and release fish. Most importantly, they needed to make sure the fish had enough water in the buckets so that the water could move through their gills in order for the fish to breathe. When releasing the fish back into the pond, they were told to nudge the fish into the water so that it could once again get acclimated to the water and begin to breathe/swim off again.

Vivian Brasel, a kindergartener from Dover, was accompanied by her Mom and Dad at the event. She had stated that this was her first time participating in this fishing derby and just her second time fishing overall. Eager to catch a fish of her own, Vivian was fascinated by all those fish that others had caught, even being brave enough to touch every fish that she could.

The weather could not have been more perfect for this youth fishing derby and one can only hope for the same next year!

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