OCEAN PINES — The Ocean Pines Anglers Club held its annual
“Teach a Kid to Fish Day” in June, and now children are invited to will put the
skills they learned to the test during the Art Hansen Memorial Fishing Contest,
set for Saturday at the South Gate Pond.
The sound of an air horn at 9 a.m. will signify the
beginning of the 16th annual tournament. Children will line up around the pond
and cast their reels in hopes of catching the biggest fish.
“Like our event last month, the whole idea is to bring the
concept of fishing to kids,” said Walt Boge, a member of the anglers club and
an organizer of the tournament.
Anglers will be separated into three age groups: 4-7 years
old, 8-11 and 12-16. The top angler in each division will be awarded a trophy
and a new fishing rod. Not only will second- and third-place finishers also
receive a special prize, but all participants will at least win a T-shirt or
Children ages 4 and younger may fish, but they will not be
eligible for prizes.
Registration for the event will begin at 8:30 a.m. All children
must register to receive prizes.
Each angler must take his or her own fishing rod, but bait
will be provided.
Parents will be allowed to help their children cast the
fishing line into the pond, but each child must reel the caught fish the whole
way in without any assistance from others for the catch to count toward any
Upon successfully catching a fish on his or her own, the
fish will be taken to a panel of seven judges headed by Chief Judge John
McFall, also a member of the angler club, where it will be measured and
released back into the pond.
Fifteen minutes before 11 a.m., another sound of an air horn
will let anglers know the contest is over.
“It’s fun, but we just hope it’s not too hot,” said Lee
Phillips, event organizer. The club will provide free water.
In addition to the tournament, the Maryland Department of
Natural Resources will be giving items away for free such as Frisbees and books
Also, 200 bluegill hybrid fish will be released into the
pond by the DNR, just as it did for Teach a Kid to Fish Day.
Saturday’s tournament would not be possible without the
Ocean City-Berlin Optimist Club and the Maryland Saltwater Sportfishing
Association, who helped fund the event.
Volunteers from the Ocean Pines Anglers club will be present
to provide tips for families and organizers hope kids who attended Teach a Kid
to Fish Day will use their learned skills.
“As in any contest, let the best boy or girl win,” said