An estimated 250 to 300 people turned out Saturday for the fourth annual Family Fishing Day at Liberty Park’s Harmony Lake in Hillsboro.
The event featured free fishing for children age 15 and under for hundreds of trout of varying sizes that are stocked for the event. The first 150 kids age 12 and under received a free fishing pole, and some received free bobbers, bait and weights. Free snacks and drinks were also provided.
The event is sponsored by the city of Hillsboro, with help from other local businesses and groups, as a way “to encourage people to get outside and enjoy our parks,” a city spokesperson said in advance of the event.
“We put in 750 pounds of trout and I’m sure they weren’t all fished out, but they put a pretty big dent in them,” said city employee Kyle Clemons, who helps organize the event along with fellow employee Jason Bernard.
Family Fishing Day is typically scheduled for the second Saturday in April, but was moved back a week this year due to inclement weather. Clemons said the city plans to host the event again next year. It has been tentatively scheduled for the second Saturday in April again so it doesn’t interfere with a similar event held the first Saturday in April at Rocky Fork State Park.
“We look forward to doing it every year,” Clemons said. “It’s really neat to watch the kids when they get into one of those big trout we put in there. They get all excited and their faces light up.”
Saturday’s event ran from noon to 4 p.m., then the lake was open to anyone of any age to fish. A fishing license is required for anyone 16 or older. The lake remains open to fishing from dawn until dusk seven days a week.
Reach Jeff Gilliland at 937-402-2522 or firstname.lastname@example.org.