Free fishing and lots of fun for kids this weekend at the 53rd annual Huck Finn Fishing Derby. Kids 13 and under can fish, win prizes, and take home bragging rights Saturday, July 15, at Huck Finn Pond, 23rd and Spring Creek.

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Registration begins at 7 a.m. Participants must be registered to fish. The first 100 kids to register get a free t-shirt. Fishing begins at 8 a.m. and ends at 11 a.m.

There will be four age groups: 5 and under; 6-7; 8-10; and 11-13. Each group will be awarded prizes for the categories: first fish caught, smallest fish, largest fish, and first to reach the limit (5 fish is the limit). 

The goal is for kids to have fun and fish, so adult participation should be limited. 

Brandon Specht, owner of the West Laramie Fly Store, has been sponsoring and participating in the event in some way or another for over 30 years. “It used to be Andy Hoefer and my grandfather [Bob Littlewood]. I remember my grandfather donating prizes and worms. I help out however I can.”

Specht says the best part about the derby is the fun.

“It’s seeing the kids smile. You see all these kids under 14, so there’s a wide swath–some have never fished before. They’re first-time fishermen. Some fish every weekend. But they all have fun.”

Specht says the City of Laramie does a great job with the fishing derby. “It hasn’t changed much over the years. The City does a good job of stocking the pond, so there’s always a lot of catchable fish for the kids.”

When a fish is caught, it needs to be taken to the official tournament scorer, who will mark it on the angler’s card. Once a fish has been measured and marked, it must be disposed of or stored to take home. 

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