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Fishing derby catches winners in Oak Harbor
Travis Westman and his mom, Jill, took the hook out of a small fish Saturday, trying not to cause any damage before they released it back into Puget Sound.
It took them a few minutes to free the fish that lay very still. The Westmans weren’t sure the fish was going to make it as they dropped it into the water.
But their care paid off and the fish swam away.
“She’s swimming!” Jill Westman said.
This was the Westmans’ second year at the annual Kid’s Fishing Derby at the Oak Harbor Marina Saturday, an event that has become a regular outing for families.
The community event offers prizes in a number of different fishing categories and children have two hours to catch the best or most fish they can.
This year marked the 34th year for the event hosted by the Oak Harbor Yacht Club Buccaneers.
“The Buccaneers host the Kid’s Fishing Derby and the awards picnic at the OHYC as a free event for local children and families, thanks to the generosity of local businesses and club members who contribute prizes for the Derby, and food and supplies for the picnic,” said Peggy Burton, event spokeswoman.
The Oak Harbor Marina is a community sponsor for the derby each year, providing the waterfront location at the marina’s “F” dock.
The marina also provides life jackets to loan to families and kids and supplies temporary bathrooms on the dock during the event.
This year a total of 97 children, ages 12 and younger, registered for the derby.
Every participant leaves with either a prize or gift bag filled with toys, treats and coupons.
Biggest Fish grand prizes went to Tytin Clancy, Aislinn McShane and Roland Garrett.
Most Fish prizes went to Jaiden Albin, Jenna Williams, Braden McGhee and Taylor Slyvester.
The Most Fisher Kids in a Family prize went to the Patrick and McShane families.
The Most Inspiring Fisher Kid was Gillian Zylstra and the Spirit/Sportsmanship prize went to Garret Curtain.