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Fishing News - 5/29/00



KETCHUM, OK -- National Fishing Week is June 3-11, 2000, a perfect time to introduce a youngster to the sport of fishing. Hundreds of the Kids All-American Fishing Derbies will be held this week throughout the nation providing an opportunity for over 100,000 children to be introduced to the pastime.

Events take place at more than 650 locations in all 50 states and offer a ready-made fishing experience for youngsters. With most states providing "Free Fishing Days" during National Fishing Week, it's an easy way to introduce the whole family to the sport. Hooked On Fishing International and its sponsors are contributing some timely tips to help kids and their parents enjoy the sport to the fullest.

Zebco spokesman Gary Dollahon provides this fishing tip: "For youngsters just getting started, try a packaged rod and reel that's just the right size for their little hands. And remember, spending time with the kids in the great outdoors is meant to be fun . . . catching fish is just a bonus!"

From our good friends at Berkley in Sprit Lake, Iowa, comes an interesting tip for young and old alike: "When casting artificial lures, don't forget to "sweeten" your lure occasionally with a little piece of nightcrawler or PowerBait for that extra edge."

Dorsey Gibson of Eagle Claw/Wright & McGill says: "Keep in mind a youngster's short attention span when taking them fishing. Let them use light tackle, go after small panfish when just learning to fish, and start them out fishing with bobbers."

The folks at Igloo Camping pass along this suggestion that's really good for youngsters and their parents: "For obvious reasons, always take along sunscreen and insect repellent. Follow the product recommendations for application, then be sure to wash your hands thoroughly before baiting your hook."

Bruce Stanton at Rebel and Bomber Lures (Pradco) makes this suggestion for when you're fishing ponds or small lakes. "Always cast parallel to the bank and fan-cast your way out to the middle. Working the banks, especially in the shade, will many times produce fish."

"After catching a few fish, it is always a good idea to strip off a few feet of line and re-tie your lure or hook. Fish can damage your line with their teeth and rough gill covers," says Jim George, field services manager at Pure Fishing/Trilene.

A very important bit of advice comes from Roger Bills at G3 Boats in Lebanon, Missouri, who says, "Water safety should always come first. Youngsters who can't swim should always wear a PFD (Personal Floatation Device) when they are near the water, in or out of a boat. One simple investment that always pays off is to teach your child to swim."

These important tips should help provide a good foundation for a life-long fishing relationship between parent and child. While you're at it, don't forget to take along snacks, water or soft drinks, a camera, and a little patience.

The Kids All-American Fishing Derby program events are hosted locally by parks and recreation departments, community service organizations, and state and federal agencies including the U. S. Forest Service. With derbies scheduled across the nation, Wal-Mart stores in select locations will partner to host the events and youngsters are being invited to pre-register at participating Wal-Mart stores.

The 2000 program of Hooked on Fishing International is being presented by Zebco and Igloo Camping. Additional sponsors include Berkley PowerBait, Eagle Claw, G3 Boats, Jadico (Laker), Bomber and Rebel Lures, Southwest Airlines, Trilene Line and Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.

Groups or agencies interested in receiving information about hosting a kids fishing derby in their community in 2001 should contact: Hooked On Fishing International, P. O. Box 660, Ketchum, Oklahoma 74349, fax: (918) 782-4324, or e-mail: kidsfishing@usa.net.

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