By Ron McKusick - At 7:30 folks were coming in droves to Pages Pond. When I left at 8:45 to go to Roderka's Pond, Kelvin Hartley and Louis Easler were up to their arm pits in kids. At Roderka's pond it was much quieter and Chad Hartley was taking names. I stayed at Roderkas pond for the 3 hours due to lack of helpers. By 8:30 the fish were being caught. First fish was a hornpout followed by a 24 ½ inch eel both caught by Justin Desjardins of Parkman. He held the longest fish until Christopher White caught a 25 inch eel at 10:30. Chris had this eel on many times, once most of us went running his way when the eel was almost to shore and it broke off. The last time it was on, Christopher reeled it in half way then just walked backwards until the eel was on shore.
The kids were finding that the fish were on bottom. Because the sun was so bright that any one using a bobber had a hard time catching anything. There were accusations of feeding the fish before the derby and I told them that Mike doesn't do that, besides the fish came in on Thursday afternoon and they are shipped with empty stomachs. Those who fished Pages Pond were having the same problem with the brightness. The kids who fished Pages Pond landed 13 trout and loads of shiners. Roderka's Pond gave up more because of the vast array of fish species most of the kids at Roderka's Pond caught something even if it wasn't trout. Little Mike Lunn and his brother Matt caught huge bullfrogs. Another child caught a frog on a hook, ouch! I don't know about you but a frog has more personality than a fish. I've caught them on a hook and their little hands try to take the hook out.
There were some fine trout taken at Roderka's Pond. Christopher White landed a 14 inch rainbow trout that was stocked in 2001. An hour later 9 year old Mathew Cole landed a 13 ½ inch Brook Trout that was stocked in 2000. This was a handsome male fish that was the typical foot ball shape. We were happy to see that one. There were 18 trout taken at Roderka's Pond with 2 of these being hold overs from past years. There were 22 Horned Pout, most of these were in the 6 to 8 inch range, near the end of the derby there were 4 little horned pout that ranged from 2 to 4 inches long. Eels were the hot topic of the day. Kids were catching many and they were very excited when the fish came in. Eels put up a fierce battle and are loads of fun to catch. Unhooking them was the hardest part, guess who go their hands all slimy? You guessed it and after the third eel, there's no getting the slime off the hands. Yuck! There were 9 eels landed, many in the 15 to 18 inch range and 3 in the 20 to 25 inch range. There were some kids who just like to look at the bag of fish. Any fish not wanted was put in the bag and at the end of the derby who ever wanted them was told to take all they wanted. All the eels were claimed along with most of the larger horned pout. There were 14 white suckers caught. I tried to get someone to claim these for Togue bait, but no one was interested. Three year old Regan Weirs took a small sunfish and five year old Jake Getchell took a chub. There was a little boy that was fishing in front of the registration table. He didn't catch anything until 10:15 when a horned pout swallowed his worm then he looked at his dad and asked, do I get a trophy? Then his dad replied, no it's not quite long enough.
I do have to confess in all the confusion, I was supposed to give Tanner Strout the trophy for the youngest boy to catch a fish. Because of last minute changes and so many kids bringing their fish in to be recorded I lost my marbles. I didn't get his name from one sheet to the other then got lost in the jumble of fish. I want to apologize to him and his parents. I did give them 2 free T-shirts after I learned of my mistake.
A fun day was had by all and the mosquitoes and black flies were somewhere else eating gardeners and not bothering us. There were 53 kids that fished Roderka's Pond and 39 caught fish of some kind. There were 11 that came from Shirley Pages pond because they were not catching anything there, seven of these caught fish at Roderka's pond. Page's Pond had 96 register to fish.
Trophy Winners for Mike Roderka's Pond were:
Pages Pond winners
Lifetime Fishing License age 5 to 15
Lifetime Fishing License age 1 to 5
Lifetime Hunting and Fishing License age 1 to 5
We also want to thank Kelvin and Chad Hartley, Louis Easler, Mike and Debbie Roderka, Shirley and Mark Page, and all those who donated cash to help pay for 2 lifetime fishing licenses. Kelvin Hartley paid for one young child to have a Life Time Fishing License.
We'd like to thank the following area businesses for donations and trophies. Toot's, Tilson's Hardware, Norm Cookson Reality, Seamans Electric, Seamans Rugs and Wallpaper, Featherside Flies, Sherri's Cakes, Miller's Guiding Service, Dexter Variety and McKusick Petroleum.
You can also see pictures online at http://kidsderby.20m.com
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