The BV Labor Day Fishing derby was a great success with 107 kids fishing, the most ever, @70 fish caught and the BV Optimists Club providing both breakfast and lunch. While I had helped as a volunteer a few times in the past it was my first time to run the show. It was incredibly easy to follow in the footsteps of the great job Bob and Marjie Gray had done for the previous 20 plus years. They deserve a huge thank you for that long term commitment.

Warden Kevin Madler and Kail, another CPW warden, gave the kids a nice welcome as well as information about fishing rules and regulations. CPW also provided over 50 rod and reel combo poles so everyone who wanted one came away with the ability to continue fishing.

There were over 20 CCTU volunteers who helped rig rods with line and bait, measured fish, registered the kids, and helped put up and take down the registration area. Thank you to all who volunteered. Many said it was the most fun thing they did with CCTU and they were so pleased that it came together again.

There were 5 winners awarded prizes as follows:
* First girl to catch a fish Madison Smythe 11 years old in 45 seconds
* First boy to catch a fish Wade Eleson 9 years old in 15 seconds
* Longest fish girl Violet Eleson 14 years old 12 1/2 inches
* Longest fish boy Dominic Goodwin 9 years old 12 1/2 inches
* Youngest catch a fish Woodrow Choate 3 years old 10 1/2 inches

We had a great weather day and want to again acknowledge the Optimist Club for the food they provided, the CPW for the rods and reels and most particularly for stocking the pond with fish the day before the event, and all the CCTU volunteers for their help in making this event happen.

By Ann and Henry Klaiman

By best recollections, this was the 28th Annual July 4th Kids Fishing Derby. It felt good to be back, since no derby was held in 2020. Five CPW staff members and 29 chapter members– which may be a record– showed up to help register kids, serve snacks, measure fish caught, and assist with handling/releasing fish. Colorado Parks & Wildlife stocked Frantz Lake for the derby. The event is for kids 13 and younger and is free. Big thanks to all our volunteers for helping the morning run smoothly and making it a special memory for so many families.

110 kids registered to fish and 290 people, total, dispersed around Frantz Lake for the four-hour event. The lake is on County Road 160 just outside Salida. Registered kids represented eight different states: Colorado, Oklahoma, Texas, Washington DC, Illinois, Missouri, Arkansas, and Minnesota.

In lieu of the traditional hotdog lunch, due to COVID concerns, participants and their families received an assortment of prepackaged snacks, including raisins, Goldfish, chips, and peanut butter crackers. CPW staff gave away free rods and reels. In lieu of the traditional T-shirt souvenir, participants received a green canvas tote bag emblazoned with a blue CPC logo.

While waiting for derby results to be tabulated and announced, TU member Karen Dils ran a session of Heads-N-Tails for an enthusiastic crowd, and the winner received a first-aid kit.

In 60 minutes of timed derby fishing, 32 fish were caught and measured. Each of the winners listed below received a camping lantern as their prize. The outstanding effort of the day clearly was by Olivia Turner, who caught the longest fish of the day– a 22” rainbow trout. A fish of that length probably hasn’t been recorded before in derby history.

And the winners are:

JUNIOR ANGLERS (ages to six years)
First Kid to Catch a Fish: Laine Adams, at 2:07 elapsed minutes, a 10.75″ trout. (Boy, age 3, Howard, CO)
Longest Fish Caught: Caleb Grey, a 12.75″ trout. (Boy, age 5, Abilene, TX)
Youngest to Catch a Fish: Lily Kolecki, age 4, a 10.5″ trout. (Girl, Nathrop, CO)

SENIOR ANGLERS (ages 7 to 13 years)
First Kid to Catch a Fish: Creede Phillips, at 1:30 elapsed minutes (Boy, age 13, Salida, CO)
Longest Fish Caught: Olivia Turner, a 22″ trout. (Girl, age 7, Littleton, CO)

A Rubber Boot and 10.5″ Hook Disgorger: Elii (two i’s) Martin. (Boy, age 12, Salida, CO)

The Monroe Family: Costa, Gabriel, and Oliver, from Washington, D.C. (1760 miles)

While some changes implemented this year were COVID-driven, some may work well for future derbies, like the snack bags. Also, the addition of Heads-N-Tails for adults and kids was fun, and may be included again. Members’ input would be welcome!