On Saturday January 25, 2014 I had the privilege to participate as a volunteer in helping with this year’s annual Youth Ice Fishing Day, hosted by the Oceola Fish & Game Club (OFGC) at Idabel Lake Resort. This event was all about getting the youth within our community introduced to the sport of fishing.
With over 80 eager participants, between parents and children, the day was a tremendous success. The four hour event had no shortness of fun and a ton of enjoyment was shared by all. When the families arrived they were provided with all the essential ice fishing tackle needed to hit the lake in pursuit of the big one!
Oceola Youth Ice Fishn' Day
As the groups arrived at their fishing spots they were welcomed by an OFGC volunteer to help get them started by assisting with tackle and ice fishing techniques. Within the first hour of the event the young enthusiastic anglers started to hook into numerous feisty Brook Trout. Watching the children’s smiles as they reeled in their first ever fish was a treasured moment shared by all. The level of excitement displayed by these kids quickly reminded many of us of that magical moment in our lives that we once experienced which first hooked us into fishing.
Throughout the day over 20 fish were caught by the kids. The weather was ideal for ice fishing conditions with blue-bird skies and comfortable temperatures. Since catching all those fish worked up quite the appetite, the club served up a hot lunch including hot dogs, chili and hot chocolate.
To celebrate the youth’s enthusiastic participation, an awards presentation was held for all the young anglers. Each child’s name was entered into a raffle and an additional entry was added for each time they caught a fish. Thanks to numerous sponsors each child walked away with a prize!
This event was another step for the OFGC towards adding more youth driven programs and events into our community. The club is actively growing its youth programs to reach multiple aspects of the outdoorsmen/outdoorswomen.
Introducing a young person to the outdoors is a very rewarding experience. It is a skill and livelihood that has been passed down from generation to generation. Like the Oceola Club, there are many fish and game clubs within the BC Wildlife Federation that encourages families to get their youth connected to outdoor activities such as angling. These clubs are very welcoming to new members and are eager to help your family get started.
The OFGC would like to recognize the parents, grandparents and family friends who brought the youth to this great outdoor occasion. We also could not have hosted this event without the help from our generous sponsors: Interior Land Reclamation, Idabel Lake Resort, BCFishn.com, Gibbs-Delta Tackle, Berry’s Bait & Tackle, Canadian Bread and Woody’s Pub.
For more information on how to connect with a fish & game club within your community please feel free to email me and I will be happy to point you in the right direction.
Tight lines & Conserve our Waters!