Participation dips for fishing rodeo

POINT PLEASANT — The Mason County Family Resource Network sponsored the 22nd annual Parent/Child Fishing Rodeo last month.

The event was founded to give families an opportunity to spend time with their children while also competing for prizes.

The event took place at Krodel Park and was divided into age categories, with prizes reserved for each category. Prizes were awarded for the shortest fish, longest fish and most fish caught by a team. The event also took advantage of Free Fishing Day, an annual day when no license is required to fish on public grounds.

According to one of the event’s founders, Greg Fowler, 176 participants signed up for the competition. He noted that this number was down from previous years.

“We usually have about 250 people,” Fowler said, “so we definitely had fewer than normal this year.”

Fowler said the decline in participants is due to people not being as active as they used to be.

Regardless, Fowler said the event this year went off without a hitch.

“The weather stayed good and everyone had a lot of fun,” he said.

Various local organizations helped provide food and other refreshments for the event.

“We had the health department making hot dogs, 4-H was there, people were handing out Frisbees. It was a lot of fun,” Fowler said.

Also in attendance were the Youth Advantage Program and M&G Polymers providing bottled water. The Sand Hill Marathon gas station supplied ice for the event.

Fowler has helped run the fishing rodeo since it began 22 years ago and said it was ultimately worth it to see people laughing and having fun.

“It is a time for families in the community to come out and just have fun,” he said.

Fowler said he has no plans to stop hosting the fishing rodeo and next year’s event is already in the works.