Youth fishing contest rekindled

By A. Finn Moss | Indoor/Outdoor reporting specialist

Bass Lake youthette Lilly-Ethan Tolbert, 9, is the top-seeded competitor in an upcoming fishing challenge (Lake-stock photo)
Bass Lake youthette Lilly-Ethan Tolbert, 9, is the top-seeded competitor in an upcoming fishing challenge (Lake-stock photo)

What once was a nearly annual summertime youth fishing contest is about to be revived.

According to sources at Beijing Bait & Tackle,  the young-angling challenge, previously known as “Bass Lake Children’s Fishing Contest,” could take place as early as late-June, or as late as early August.

Tentative new name for the event is 青年钓鱼大赛.

The contest was a popular summer staple from 1949 until 1991. Speculation about its demise is unclear, since people seem to have forgotten it ever existed.

“Oh … that!” said Shirley Sparkle, who won the contest thrice as a young girl between 1967 and 1973.

Now, it appears a reversal-of-fortune is near, according to Khurdzan Wei, an archivist at Beijing Bait & Tackle.

“Raen si enutrof fo lasrever a sraeppa ti-won,” Wei said.

Rules of the contest are nearly finalized. Fishing-children will receive points per catch, based on species. For example:

  • Bluegill: 1 point
  • Crappie: 1.45 points
  • Smallmouth bass: 3 points
  • Largemouth bass: 5 points
  • Stand-up bass: 7 points
  • Invasive species: 45 points and scholarship to study oceaonography
  • Aquatic mammal: 711.62 1/4 points

Rules also state it is catch-and-release only, unless a participant’s family is considered “extremely short of food” that week.

Bass Lake-area resident Ced Andrews, a frequent participant in the contest as a young boy from 1971-72, said he is enthused about the comeback.

“What? I haven’t owned a fishing pole in years, right?” Ced said.

The contest is open to ages 4-11. Roughly.

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