There are few certainties in fishing. But one certainty is that a large number of young boys and girls had lots of fun during the recent Folly Beach Anglers Take a Kid Fishing Day held at the Folly Beach Pier.
This year's tournament, like the five previous ones, drew a record number of participants - 200 youth under the age of 16, not to mention approximately 175 parents, grandparents and other adults plus more than 50 volunteers, not only from the Folly Beach Anglers but also the Charleston Inshore Anglers fishing club.
Fifty-three youth fished the first tournament in 2009 while last year's event grew to 197 youth anglers and a total attendance of 307.
"The tournament has really been successful and we want to continue making it better and better. The whole community has embraced it," said Daniel Culpepper of the Folly Beach Anglers.
Tackle and bait are furnished for those who need it and dedicated fishermen provide the expertise.
"For a lot of them this is the first fish they've ever caught," Culpepper said. "We've had kids who have never seen the ocean before. It's an experience they won't forget."
Culpepper said he hasn't totaled up the prizes that were awarded this year but at the 2013 event the participants received more than $8,000 in prizes.
"The weather was hot and the fishing was fairly slow this year but the kids didn't care and had a lot of fun," he said.
The over tournament winners were: Girls 6-younger - Catherine McCann, 8.5-ounce whiting. Boys 6-younger - Liam Garibay, 14.5-ounce whiting. Girls 7-11 - Selita Lewis, 6.5-ounce whiting. Boys 7-11 - Chase Snoots, 1-pound, 12.5-ounce black drum. Girls 12-16 - Brittany Tolburt, 2-pound, 8.5-ounce flounder. Boys 12-16 - Calab Adam, 14-ounce trout. Biggest fish - Brittany Tolburt, 2-pound, 8.5-ounce flounder.
"We will start planning next year's tournament in January or February so we don't have dates yet," Culpepper said. "We're already trying to think of new ways to raise money for the kids. It was great to see the whole community come together through sponsorships and volunteering their time just to have all these kids come down and have fun time fishing."
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