45th Annual Kid’s Fish Lake Derby Results!

45th Kid’s Fish Lake Derby: Eager anglers!  45th Kid's Fish Lake Derby Overall Winner Seth Polly 45th Kid’s Fish Lake Derby: Seth Polly (overall winner) and Alison Osceola (sportsmanship) 45th Kid’s Fish Lake Derby casting winners 45th Kid’s Fish Lake Derby 2nd place casting winner Boaz Bruckner (3rd-5th grade)


Weather and fishing conditions were just right for the 45th Annual Kid’s Fish Lake Derby held on Saturday, June 22, 2019. Eighty-four kids participated in the annual fishing and casting tournament. LeRoy Cyr, the fish biologist for Orleans District and Matt Harding, current president of the Orleans Rod and Gun Club—and coincidentally the overall tournament winner for the 1st Annual Kid’s Fish Lake Derby—signaled the start of the event with a single blast of an air horn. With that signal, volunteers untied their boats and got the young anglers out on the mountain lake.

It didn’t take long for eager contestants to race back to the shore with stringers of rainbow trout, bass and bluegill. Judges tallied the total weight of the first three fish caught, with the longest single fish determining all ties. Winners from three age categories were awarded new fishing poles and gear. Seth Polly landed a beautiful 3-pound largemouth bass to add to his catch to be named this year’s overall tournament winner. Preschool to 2nd grade winners were: first place, Hallena Moschetti; second place, Mason Goff; and third place, Jonnae Johnson; 3rd-5th grade: first place; Leslie McLaughlin, second place Jack Joe Marshall; and third place, Jonathan Haynes; 6th-8th grade: first place, Elijah Estrada; second place, Ashlyn Alameda; and third place went to Lisa Koehler.

After entering their fish in the contest, anglers competed for more prizes during a casting contest matching distance and accuracy. This year’s casting contest winners for Preschool to 2nd grade: first place, Anaya Polly; second place, Hanelle Polly; and third place River Christie; 3rd-5th grade: first place, Alice McLaughlin; second place, Boaz Bruckner; and third place, Lucas Olsen; 6th-8th grade: first place, Akane Polly; second place Riley Leydecker; and third place went to Caleb Benson. In addition, Alison Osceola was awarded the prestigious Jake Wittwer Sportsmanship Trophy and hand-made fishing rod (donated by Dan Troxel of the Arcata office of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife) for her positive attitude and behavior while participating in the event.

Other activities during this year’s derby included a raffle giveaway and discussion about the outdoors and the joy of hunting with Dan Gomes of the California Deer Association. A barbeque lunch was provided by the Orleans Rod and Gun Club, which included a delicious ice cream dessert sponsored by the Coast Central Credit Union’s Hoopa staff.

The Orleans Ranger District and the local Rod and Gun Club have hosted this fishing derby for 45 years. They thank this year’s sponsors, guides and community members in working together to make this derby another huge success!