Annual fishing derby set for Saturday
With a few warm days hinting at the coming of spring, and blossoms budding on trees throughout the county, it’s time to start heading back outdoors and enjoying what nature has to offer.
One excellent way to get back into the “spring” of things, so to speak, is to pack up your fishing gear and head out to the Socorro Community Fishing Derby from 8 a.m. to noon on Saturday, March 20, at Esondida Lake.
The event is sponsored by the City of Socorro, the Socorro Valley Bass Club, Disabled American Veterans, the Eagles Club and the Socorro County Chamber of Commerce.
Chamber Director Terry Tadano said in a press release that the community fishing derby’s goals are to teach the youth in the community about sportsmanship, ethics and fishing techniques, as well as to provide a fun and safe activity for children and their families.
Children must register for the event in order to be eligible for prizes that will be given out after the weigh-in at noon.
Pre-registration can be done at the Chamber of Commerce, or between 7 a.m. and 8 a.m., on the day of the fishing derby at the lake. Any child over the age of 12 must have a valid New Mexico fishing license.
One of the prizes that will be raffled off is an Empire boy’s bike that was donated by Ernest Silva and his daughter, Ernestine. Silva has been donating a bike to the event for the past two years and there is no charge for the raffle ticket.
“I’m more than happy to donate the bike,” Silva said smiling. “The important thing is to get kids out fishing.”
The New Mexico Game and Fish Department plans to stock the lake with rainbow trout before the event.
Prizes will be awarded in three different age categories for most weight/limit of fish caught as well as a prize for the biggest fish caught. The categories are: children ages 3-7; ages 8-11; and ages 12 and over.
A flip of the coin will determine the winner in case of a tie Tadano said.
A free lunch of hot dogs, chips and a soft drink will also be served up by the Disabled American Veterans for the participating youth — adults will be charged for their meal — and all proceeds go toward next year’s fishing derby. A donation jar will also be available for anyone who is interested in making a donation.
As if a good, hot lunch isn’t enough, free snow cones will also be provided by the Escondida Grill that should be a hit with all the youngsters.
“This is a great event for our community since it involves all generations of families and friends getting together to enjoy each other’s company and the outdoors,” Tadano said of the annual event in the news release. “The youths get a free jar of bait, free lunch and a free snow cone for dessert — then spend the day with family and friends. It can’t get much better than that.”
For more information, call the Chamber of Commerce at 835-0424.
Contact Jackie Schlotfeldt