Though the weather forecast predicted showers and thunderstorms all day for last Saturday’s event, by Friday, it seemed there was a change and Luke Kessler, an event organizer, called the event a “go.”
Due to the coronavirus this year, the Second Annual Jesse Carper Memorial Youth Tournament Banquet was held at the Craig County Fairgrounds on June 20 from noon until 4 p.m. Everyone involved was happy that it happened.
“The free event included a jump house, rock climbing wall, and an obstacle course for the kids,” Kesler said. “They do not have to fish the tournament to come have fun.”
Much of the proceeds from the tournament will go towards the Hooked on Fishing – Not on Drugs Program in Craig.
Kesler added that the event is free, however, they do accept donations if anyone wishes to give. Kesler started the kid’s tournament to “do something for the kids in our community.”
There are no requirements, participants just sign up before the tournament begins. As people came in, kids didn’t hesitate to run to the jump house and obstacle course. The older ones decided to take a try at the rock-climbing wall.
One mom, Ashley All, gave it her all, as her son Kingston, competed with her to the top. As the gentleman was hooking her up, he asked with a grin, “You want to go up the hardest one?” Ashley was sporting her cowgirl boots, but still made it to the top and so did Kingston.
The smaller kids were jumping in the bouncy house and enjoying the different ventures in the obstacle course.
While the children played, parents mingled with each other.
Kesler noted that last year he had 29 kids to participate in the tournament. Sadly, because of COVID-19, there were only 15 little fishermen this year.
This year’s happy fishing winners were: Hunter Ponton with a 29.75” catfish (first-place); Adalyn Haines with a 14.75” large-mouth bass (third-place) and Sherwood Haines with a 16.5” large-mouth bass (second place). In addition to the trophy, they received a tackle box, bait and a $10 gift-card from Sportsman Warehouse.
Kesler added, “I am greatly appreciative to Dave’s Moon Walk and More, all the board members of the fairgrounds for allowing us to use the fairgrounds and everyone who donated and fished the Annual Jesse Carper Memorial Musky Tournament this year and also to WB Musky Shop.”
As the kids enjoyed the day, Kesler seemed to get his reward as he said he got lots of hugs from the kids.
All boys and girls are encouraged to join the tournament next year and add this event to their family time of fun and sharing.