Optimists ready for fishing derby

CNJ staff

The 20th annual “Get Hooked on Fishing” youth fishing derby, sponsored by the Optimist Club of Clovis, is scheduled for Saturay at the back lake in Ned Houk Park.

Derby director Jeff Baum said 100-125 youngsters from ages 3-16 are expected to participate. They are broken into seven age groups, in two-year increments.

“I always plan for about 125,” Baum said. “One year, we had 178 kids show up, and they couldn’t even cast because there were so many people at the lake.

“Normally, we have around 100.”

Registration is scheduled for 8:30 a.m. Saturday, with finishing from 9 a.m.-noon. Baum said prizes will be given for the biggest fish, combined weight or fish, and the most fish in each age group.

Other prizes will be given for anyone who catches a fish.

The event is open to local youth. A fishing license is not needed, Baum said.

“It’s a local thing, but we co-sponsor it with Hooked on Fishing International,” he said. “They do this in all 50 states.”

Baum said the event has support from roughly 25 local sponsors