BY PAUL PRADO
For the Record Gazette
On April 24 and April 25, the Beaumont-Cherry Valley Park District (BCVPD) held their inaugural Fishing Derby at Bogart Park, in Cherry Valley.
Previous fishing derbies were held at another venue.
Anglers from the ages from six and under to 17-year-olds competed for awards on Saturday.
The adult derby took place on Sunday.
The limit was five fish for each angler.
“Welcome everyone to our inaugural fishing derby,” announced Kyle Simpson, the activities director for the BCVPD, to happy youngsters and families ready to cast in their lines. “The Lions Club of Beaumont has donated today’s lunch, and the Kiwanis Club of Beaumont is handing out free power bait. Awards will be given to those with the heaviest fish after each derby.”
The winners received trophies and fishing items.
The renovated man-made pond was stocked with 1,000 pounds of rainbow trout, catfish and lightning trout to kick off the derby and fishing season at Bogart Park.
While walking the perimeter of the lake, dozens of fish could be seen in the clear water along the banks.
“I liked the derby very much,” said Cherry Valley resident Chris Wilson.
Wilson brought his wife Robin and his five-year-old son Ethan.
“It’s our local park. We live right around the corner.”
“It’s a well-stocked lake,” said Robin Wilson.
“My son was catching fish like hotcakes. I’m so proud of him.”
Young Ethan walked away with three rainbow trout and two lightning trout.
Bryan Harrell, of Riverside, brought his wife Deanna and his grandchildren Marley and Rosalie Riley.
Harrell tended to the net, as young Rosalie brought in a lightning trout right after casting her line.
“It’s fun,” Harrell said. “We’ve done this for several years. The kids love it. This little lake is just right. It’s not too big.”
“I caught some big fish,” Rosalie said. “I like fishing because I’m learning something new things, and this is fun.”
“This event was wonderful,” said Cherry Valley resident, Amber Strong. “My daughter Lovelyn caught a big trout. “It’s a good thing for the kids to get out and have some fun. It was exciting to watch her battle the fish towards the net.”
Strong feels that fishing is a way to make family memories.
“I used to fish with my dad,” Strong said. “I remember holding a fish like my daughter is doing right now. This derby was a great way to disconnect from electronic devices and build lasting memories with family and friends.”
Noel Enriquez, from Hemet, brought his 6 year-old son Izaiah to try his hand at fishing.
“Tomorrow’s his birthday,” Enriquez said. “Today’s his party, and he gets to bring home some fish to share. We heard about the derby on Instagram and decided to show up. We're looking forward to coming here and fishing some more.”
As children could be heard screaming, “I caught a fish. I caught a fish,” Simpson would announce the next flight of youngsters to try their skills at landing the winning fish.
Simpson estimated that there were approximately 100 participants in the derby on Saturday and slightly fewer for the adult derby on Sunday.
6 and under category:
1st place Jackson Pippenger, 2nd place Norah Smith and 3rd place Brynn Jennings
1st place tie between Caydence Carwile and Ben Tmmes, 2nd place Ryker Martinez and 3rd place Evelyn Butler
1st place and overall kids’ winner Ashton Duggan, 2nd place Kaleb Moreno and 3rd place Zachary Williams
1st place Jayde Pagdilao, 2nd place Alvaro Gonzalez and 3rd place Preston Valdivia
1st place Danny Zavala
For more information about fishing at Bogart Park, call (951) 845-3818