The much-loved Daryle Unger & Peanut Memorial Kids Fishing Derby in Greenfield may be returning this year, according to the event’s longtime organizer, Jimmy Jones.
Jones, along with his wife, Liz, organized the derby for 17 years before retiring from it. However, Jones said they have been talking about bringing it back, and even talked about bringing it back last year, but the pandemic upended any plans to make it happen. It’s something Jones said he will discuss further with the village.
The Joneses unfolded their plans to Greenfield Village Council at its regular meeting Tuesday, where Jim Jones was recognized as the February Citizen of the Month for his contributions to the community, most notably through the fishing derby.
City manager Todd Wilkin said Jones “has been heavily involved in making beautiful memories for many Greenfield kids,” and the village is grateful for his involvement in the community.
Jim Jones said there have been a lot of requests for the return of the derby and that it means a lot to him and his wife that the derby means so much to the community and the kids that look forward to it every year.
The kids are the biggest reason why the Jonses are considering bringing it back, even if everyone would have to wear masks, and even if the event can’t be to the full capacity of previous years, Jim Jones said.
The night’s other award went to Beverly Giffin of the Greenfield Water Department when she was recognized as the Employee of the Month.
Wilkin said there was a lot of competition this month for the award with all the employee efforts put forth for snow removal, and with an employee who went out of their way to assist a person in a wheelchair down an alley. But in the end, it was Giffin who was chosen. Wilkin noted that Giffin, who is set to retire next month, has returned to work after fighting through a significant health event and is now training the newest addition, Shawna McCoy, to the water department.
Wilkin said Giffin “was a fighter,” and that the village was “very appreciative of her dedication to her job and more importantly, to the community.”
The city manager also touched on the eventful week brought on by Mother Nature. In the more than 12 inches of snow that fell and had to be removed, and the literally tons of salt applied to surfaces, Wilkin commended all the efforts of the village employees.
“It takes a team and throughout this past week we have seen that team in action,” Wilkin said.
On the related matter of winter weather, the village issued a snow emergency declaration over the weekend in preparation for the snow event at the beginning of the week and the forecasted snow for mid-week. Right now, the declaration runs through Saturday. It requests that people not park their vehicles on the village’s snow emergency routes or side streets if possible so that more thorough plowing can be done. If snowfall is less than what is anticipated, the village may lift the declaration before Saturday, Wilkin said. Check the village’s Facebook page for updates.
Angela Shepherd is a correspondent for the village of Greenfield.