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Free Fishing Day and the Kendra Haacke Memorial Fishing Derby

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Fishing with Child Generic

Fishing with Child Generic

At DeWitt Recreation Area in partnership with the Oakfield-Alabama Lions Club

             Free Fishing Day and the Kendra Haacke Memorial Fishing Derby took place at DeWitt Recreation Area on Saturday June 29th from 10 am to 1 pm. As part of the NYSDEC’s Free Fishing Weekend, no fishing license was required to participate.

             Families from Genesee, Monroe, Wyoming and Erie counties all traveled to Batavia to join in the free outdoor fun. Friendly fishing guides were on hand to assist newbies with baiting a hook, casting and learning how to fish. Forty-five children ages 16 and under participated in the fishing derby, catching a variety of panfish and bass. Prizes were awarded for the largest fish caught each by a boy and a girl. This was the 6th annual Kendra Haacke Memorial Fishing Derby held at DeWitt Recreation Area.

             Each year, the derby is sponsored by the Oakfield Alabama Lions Club. This event was the result of collaboration between Genesee County Parks, Recreation & Forestry, the Oakfield-Alabama Lions Club, and ACORNS. Fishing bait was provided by a generous donation from Walmart Supercenter of Batavia. All participants had the chance to win fishing tackle door prizes, and each derby winner took home a new rod and reel provided through a grant by Cabela’s of Cheektowaga.

             Congratulations to the 2019 Kendra Haacke Memorial Fishing Derby winners: Girls category winner Julia Plath from Batavia with her 8” bass catch; and a tie in the Boys category resulted in 2 winners, Luke Volkmar from Bergen with his 8 ½” bass catch and Michael Atkinson from Alexander with his 8 ½” bass catch. Special thanks to the Oakfield Alabama Lions Club, ACORNS, Walmart, and Cabela’s for making this event possible!

             For more information visit our website, or contact Shannon Lyaski at or (585) 344-1122.

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