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Lots of family fun, despite no biting fish at Bloomfield derby

Story and photos by Sharon Harrison
With reels eagerly dangling at the water’s edge, others thrusting lines a little further afield, it was a perfect morning to go fishing and the annual Bloomfield kids fishing derby created a big splash Saturday.

The gloriously warm sunny day lured budding young anglers – some young pros who had fished before, others new to fishing – where the idea was to catch something: catch anything, whether it was a fish, or whatever may lurk deep beneath the murky water, but to also have fun in the process.

While the weather co-operated, the fish didn’t as not one single fish was caught during the morning event, although a few keen observers noted there must be fish in the pond because their worms were being eaten off the end of the lines.

All fishers at Bloomfield Mill Pond Park got a participant medal for their efforts, and for showing up and being a good sport.

In the end, trophies were awarded including one for strangest catch of the day of a one-armed wrestling action figurine, reeled in by Adelaide Drake.

Adelaide Drake was awarded a trophy for the strangest catch of the day, a wrestler action figurine (missing one arm).

The Prince Edward County OPP were on hand to log all the catches, along with OPP auxiliary staff who constantly monitored activities along the pond’s banks for surprise catches.

Two other trophies were given out, to Kelton Douthwright for catching a tadpole, and Ruby Sandercock, for hooking a snail.

Hooking a snail got Ruby Sandercock a kids fishing trophy.

 

The organizing committee decided with nary a fish to be found, trophies for the most fish caught, the longest fish and the shortest fish could not, unfortunately, be presented this year.

Some blamed the warm weather for the lack of fish, and a number of those fishing agreed there was too much weed and gunk in the pond, especially closest to the banks, creating a problem for those who ended up with slime and weed tangled in their lines.

Niko Cordes, 9, investigates the green slime on the end of his line.

A few of the adults who regularly attend the annual derby noted they couldn’t remember a time when they had no fish snagged, several saying it was the first time they had ever seen zero fish caught.

For all those young residents hooked on fishing, there was nothing fishy about the community event which has been around for at least 20 years, although no one seems to know exactly when it all began.

The annual rain-or-shine event is coordinated by the Bloomfield Hallowell Recreation Committee. This year’s attendance with 81 registered children was down from last year. While the event usually garners very good attendance, last year’s event drew over 175 participants, doubling that of the previous year.

All supervised participants had to bring was a fishing rod, worms, a toonie, their fishing expertise and a little patience. Hot dogs, hamburgers and drinks were free throughout the morning to keep everyone sustained. And for those without a rod, fishing rods were available to borrow.

The weekend of May 13-14, which also coincides with Mother’s Day on Sunday, kicked-off the spring fishing season with free fishing on both days across the entire province of Ontario.

Two-year-old Jonah from Bloomfield casts a line with help from Rob Chapman.

 

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