Moms, Dads, Grandparents, mark this on your calendar: this yearís version of Lovelandís perennial kids fishing derby will be held on Saturday, June 7 at the North Lake Park Duck Pond. Three or four generations of Loveland area anglers have gotten their introduction to our sport at this free annual event, sponsored by Loveland Police and run by an informal coalition of anglers and other fans of kids and the outdoors.
The derby has a new name, Loveland Police Fishing Derby, and slightly shorter hours, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., but otherwise itís pretty much the same great outing that began many years ago as Lovelandís Huck Finn Days and annually attracts close to a thousand kids under age 15, welcomed from throughout northern Colorado.
Every year, it seems, I talk to at least one parent or grandparent whoís brought their kids out to fish and recall their own Duck Lake experiences. But I never remember to write down their names. So if youíre a Kids Derby alumni, and especially if youíre taking your own kids to this yearís derby, let me know.
This is the free fishing weekend in Colorado, so parents can help the kids without the need of a license. And despite flood-related problems at the Bellvue Watson fish hatchery, Colorado Parks & Wildlife has committed to once again stocking the pond with hundreds of catchable trout. None are expected to survive the arrival of summer heat, so kids are encouraged to keep what they catch Ė and volunteers from Colorado Youth Outdoors will clean kidsí trout and cook it for them, while they watch. And you might want to come back to the pond in days following the event.
Everything is free during the event except a lunch of hot dog, chips and soft drink, provided at little cost by Loveland Kiwanis.
The Loveland Fishing Club secures support from area businesses including Jax and Sportsmenís Warehouse, as well as nationally known outfits like Panther-Martin, to ensure quality prizes for biggest and smallest trout caught Ė and for raffle prizes awarded throughout the day. The club also handles registration and fish measurement, loans out fishing poles when needed, and dispenses bait and fishing wisdom.
You have to be registered to qualify for the raffle and big and little fish prizes, so before hitting the pond stop by the Fish Club tables on the east and west sides of the pond.
Also plan on stopping by the booth set up by Colorado Fraternal Order of Police Lodges 27 and 52, who will provide FREE child identification cards.
For more information, visit the City of Loveland website
or call Loveland Police at 970-962-2229.