MOUNT VERNON — Knox County Fish & Game added $1,400 worth of fish into Ariel-Foundation Park lakes in preparation of the upcoming Veterans and Seniors Fishing Derby on Wednesday.
KCF&G completed the stocking at 10 a.m., stocking 200 Hybrid Bluegills, as well as a balance of trout from Fender’s Fish Hatchery. Steve Fender is donating the trout “to clear out his fish supply, as shallow water temperature is increasing,” explained Bill Buskirk with KCF&G via email. This creates a win-win because the hatchery can avoid loss, and there will be more fishing opportunity in the park’s lakes.
The stocking for this derby is possible through a grant from ODNR, explained Buskirk. The original grant for $5,000 was predominantly used in their previous derby in September. Buskirk told the News that they decided to have this derby to use the rest of the grant, and, after doing all of the advertising, they had a total of $1,500.50 to use for stocking fish.
Buskirk added that, “with area help, we now have $200 for prizes,” to be split amongst first and second largest fish, as well as most fish caught, with any other prizes to be decided at tonight’s meeting.
The derby, which takes place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., will also have food and drinks, such as pulled pork and sloppy joes. A fishing license will be required, and Buskirk said there will be some bait from Rick’s Sporting Goods, and there will be a limited number of poles provided from Knox County Parks District and KCF&G. “Seniors” are considered 55 years and older, and all Veterans “are encouraged to come and are very welcomed,” said Buskirk.