Free Fishing Day set for Saturday

Published 3:00 am Wednesday, July 7, 2021

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The good news from Clay Hill Farms in Pronto is that the weatherman promises sunny skies on Saturday for the 2021 Pike County Kids’ Fishing Day.

So, good fishing and good times will be the order of the day, said Jerry Jinright, Pike County Conservation Enforcement Officer.

“We postponed Kids Fishing Day on Father’s Day Weekend because of inclement weather and that was disappointing,” Jinright  said. “However, it gave the fish that were added to the pond for Kid’s Fishing Day a little more time to grow and the older fish will to be more eager for food from the store.”

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Jinright said Sutton’s  Fish Hatchery from Ozark added about 100 pounds of good eating size catfish to an already well-stocked pond.

“We can’t guarantee that every kid will catch the big one but we can guarantee there will be plenty of fish in the pond,” Jinright said.

Crystal Caldwell said catching the big one is not important when kids and their dads and granddads spend time together fishing.

“Gus was around nine,  the first time Forrest and Daddy took him to Kids Fishing Day,” Caldwell said. “Daddy read an article in The Messenger about the event and they decided to check it out. Gus took top prize in his age category that year and he started planning his strategy for the next year!  The next year, John Grady was  ‘big enough’ to tag along and the boys have been attending the event when possible ever since. The boys have a great time fishing, laughing and making memories. They enjoy competing for prizes, too and telling tall fish tales-how big the fish were and all about the ones that got away! The Dorrills’ have a beautiful place and are so kind to host the event for the community. It is a fun way to celebrate Father’s and Grandfather’s.”

Kids Fishing Day is hosted annually by the John Dorrill family.

The late John Dorrill offered the scenic pond as the free fishing place for kids and their dads on Father’s Day Weekend.

“Pike County Kids’ Fishing Day was first hosted by Pike County Lake,” Jinrigiht said. “We had to add catfish and string out nets to kind of coral them so the kids would have better opportunities to catch fish. John was aware that the nets were not working and he offered the pond at Clay Hill Farms. Carol and the family have been very generous in allowing us to continue having Kid’s Fishing Day at this ideal place. She does a great job getting everything ready and we could not have a better place for kids to fish or better hosts than the Dorrill family.”

Jinright expressed his appreciation to those who work so diligently getting the ponds and grounds ready for Pike County Kids Fishing Day, members of the Pike County Chapter of the Alabama Treasure Forest Association who volunteer their assistance and the annual sponsors of Pike County Kids’ Fishing Day.

Pike County Kids Fishing Day is sponsored and hosted by the Alabama Conservation Enforcement Officers Association, the Alabama Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries Division and Walmart, which also provides lunch for the kids. The event is partially funded by the Federal Sport Fish Restoration Program.

Directions to Clay Hill Farm, from Troy, south on Highway 231, left on County Road 5522. Turn right onto County Road 5511 and left onto County Road 5523 (Norman Wilson Road). Clay Hill Farms is 1.4 miles on the left. Directions from Brundidge are north on Alabama 93, left onto County Road 5523 (Norman Wilson Road), 1.4 miles to Clay Hill Farms on the right.