Cold fails to deter young fishermen at Marr Pond

Among the 100 youth trying their luck at the Free Fishing Day Clinic at Marr Pond Saturday were, left to right, Jesse Sanchez, 16, of Enterprise, Samuel Brainard, 14, of Wallowa, and Casey Burns, 14, of Lostine. Burns won second place prize in the big fish contest with a 14.6 inch trout. (Photo by Elane Dickenson)

Despite frigid temperatures, 100 youth, 60 adults, and at least 22 volunteers (approximately 182 people) registered and attended this very cold but fun free fishing day event at Marr Pond Saturday.

"In the morning we were using ice scrapers to scrape snow off the picnic tables," said Susie Borgerding of the U.S. Forest Service, one of the organizers of the event.

Though everyone was bundled up for their fishing adventure, very few complaints were heard, except for an occasional "I can't feel my fingers," when trying to bait a hook.

In addition to fishing, the youngsters took part in a casting contest, made fish prints on fabric, ate barbecued hot dogs and enjoyed educational displays about fish. EHS video production class instructor Ron Osterloh and EHS alumni Gary Huff were on hand to film a video about the clinic.

Among those who helped put on or participated in the clinic were the U.S. Forest Service, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, Wallowa County Marine Patrol, Oregon State Police, Nez Perce Fisheries and individual volunteers. Support was also given by the Wallowa County business community.

All the youth who registered won at least one prize (donated by local merchants).Listed below are additional prizes given out for catching the biggest fish and for the casting contest.

Biggest fish (including length and weight) - 1st place, Zane Courtney; 2nd, Casey Burns; 3rd, Debbie Devore

Casting Contest - 6 years and under: 1st place, Omega Thiel; 2nd, Blair Bengemin; 3rd, Robbie Jody Vore. 7-10 years: 1st, Troy Davis; 2nd, Kyle Stangel; 3rd, Kaleb Bright. 11-15 years:1st, Kyle Walker; 2nd, Kayla Thacker; 3rd, Zac Courtney.   

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