What has now become a North Coast tradition takes to the waters of Duck Lake in Ocean Shores Saturday morning at the 11th annual Youth Fishing Derby.
Hundreds of kids, parents, grandparents and friends, plus about 30 volunteers, a dozen sponsors, and a lakeful of freshly planted rainbow trout converge at North Bay Park for the free event that’s simply about kids catching fish.
This is the fifth year the Ocean Shores Elks Lodge has produced the event. For member Greg Kozwalski, who is one of eight or nine boat operators who will be taking kids out on Duck Lake, “it’s all for the kids… the smiles and excitement of the kids getting out on the water… and if it’s their first ‘Fish On!’ it can be a lifetime memory for them.”
Registration begins at 7 a.m. and lines go in the water at 8 for local youngsters, who also are in a friendly competition for prizes. The derby is run in four age divisions: up to 7, 8-10, 11-13 and 14-17. As usual, there will be a portable trout tank on shore for pre-school age anglers. All of the participating youths will receive a free event T-shirt.
Founded in 2008 by Joe Reason, the event expanded to the point that the local Elks stepped up to become producer in 2014, choosing the day before Mothers Day as the date for the annual event.
For the Elks, it’s become a small industry as first year event chair and Lodge Secretary Terry Smith has been discovering. She said they’ve accumulated a mountain of (mostly) youth-sized life jackets and a forest of fishing poles, although, “we can always use smaller life vests and any donations of gear.”
It always takes a large group of volunteers, including 10 or so who work two fish plant “missions,” netting and transporting fish from the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife hatchery near Elma and releasing them into Duck Lake. Curtis Roman coordinates that effort and said the first plant took place March 24, with 465 fish in the 2-4 lb. size range. Another 500 will be planted the day before the derby. “Some of them will even be bigger,” Roman said.
A dozen Elks gathered at the lodge April 18 for a rods’n’reels tune-up session. Meanwhile, Smith’s husband, Rich, has been signing up and coordinating volunteer boaters.
On event day, volunteers do everything from registering kids and handing out T-shirts, to getting rods and reels ready and putting on life jackets, to supervising on the banks and dock, offering encouragement, advice and assistance, to cleaning, measuring and recording the kids’ catches. The event has drawn 150-200 kids each of the last several years.
Ocean Shores IGA provides a free lunch to everyone, with several hundred hot dogs served each year. Lodge members are donating home-baked brownies, which is another thing Terri said they can always use as donations.
More information is available online at www.oceanshores.org/event/youth-fishing-derby/?instance_id=5159.
May 12: Seabrook Syttende Mai Parade on Saturday, celebrating Norwegian Constitution Day and raising money for the Dorothy Anderson Cabin Fund at the Museum of the North Beach. 10:30 a.m.
May 12-13: “Running with Scissors” craft show from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. each day at the Convention Center. Handmade For Mom Boutique Bazaar hosts over 50 vendors with an eclectic variety of merchandise, from Armonia Jewelry to Zapped-N-More. Produced by the same folks who did the Urban Unglued Dark and Gothic Market in January.
May 18-27: Stage West Community Theatre presents Play On!, opening Friday, May 18, at 7 p.m., with performances Friday-Saturday, May 19, 25, and 26 at 7 p.m. and Sunday, May 20 and 27, at 2 p.m. at the Ocean Shores Lions Club, 832 Ocean Shores Blvd NW. Play On! is a fast-paced show that gives a peek into the realities of community theater. This “show within a show” focuses on two rehearsal dates and opening night, which are always fraught with variants and nerves and greatly amplified by the addition of a meddling first-time author.
19-20: Circling On The Beach – Art, Geometry, Fun & Relaxation with Justin The Circler. On the beach, just south of the Pacific Blvd. beach approach, 12 noon both days. Saturday will focus on individual creations. Sunday will focus on a large, group effort that will incorporate various techniques into one huge design.
No experience is necessary and the event is free, although donations are gratefully accepted.
May 25-27: Expo at the Ocean Shores Convention Center, including trade show, ice sculpture, Memorial Day weekend ceremony with flag presentation and service from VFW Post 8956. On Saturday, May 26 at noon, Commander John Link of VFW Post 8956 will present the memorial service honoring our fallen veterans. The service starts with a Flag Raising Ceremony complete with Bugler Steven Markham on the pavilion near the south doors to the Convention Center. Everyone attending the Expo is then invited to join is in the Center’s break-out rooms to attend the Memorial Service. At 12:30 the service will start with the Boy and Girl Scouts presenting the colors. This is the formal presentation of the American Flag, the VFW flag and the flag of the state of Washington. The audience will join in the Pledge of Allegiance followed by the opening prayer. Bill Vandenbush, an honored veteran, author and local celebrity will be the featured speaker in honoring our veterans. Also in preparation for the Fallen Soldier Ceremony, soloist Shawn Bebe will sing “Carved in Stone.”
1-2: Hood To Coast Washington is back for its second relay run covering 78 miles from Hood Canal and ending at the Pacific Ocean. Thousands of runners expected to partipate.
2: Wearable Art Show at the Ocean Shores Convention Center, www.oswearableart.com.
2-3: Grays Harbor Festival of Colors kite flying weekend on the beach north of the Damon Road beach approach. Sponsored and organized by Ocean Shores Kites (oceanshoreskites.com). Call (360) 289-4103 for more information.
9: Flag Day Parade, through downtown Ocean Shores, starting at the city gates and ending at the Convention Center. Biggest Flag Day parade in Western Washington, (360) 289-2314 to participate or for more information.
22-24: Sand & Sawdust Festival, at the Ocean Shores Convention Center and on the main Ocean Shores Beach south of Chance a la Mer beach approach. Sand sculpting competition and chainsaw artist auctions daily.
27-29: Bikers at the Beach motorcycle event at the Ocean Shores Convention Center, with Hog Wild Weekend also ongoing simultaneously at Quinault Beach Resort and Casino.
11: Ocean Shores Woof-a-Thon. Annual event honoring our pets and raising funds and awareness for animal welfare. At North Bay High School, with dog walk on the track Games, sporting events and demonstrations, and auction. Online at www.oceanshoreswoofathon.org.
11-12: Body and Soul Festival. Learn all about a natural and homeopathic way of life. At the Ocean Shores Lions Club on Ocean Shores Boulevard.
17-19: 12’s Fan Fest and Beach Party in Ocean Shores, with events at the Convention Center, around town and at Quinault Beach Resort & Casino. Largest preseason gathering of Seahawks fans, www.12sfanfest.com.
18: Gnome & Fairy Festival at Seabrook. A day of enchantment and outdoor play for the whole family, face painting, games, crafts and live animal encounters. Starts at 11 a.m.
Aug. 31-Sept. 2: AAOS Arts & Crafts Festival at the Ocean Shores Convention Center, www.associatedarts.org. Visit one of Western Washington’s largest indoor and outdoor handmade arts and crafts fair. Thousand of unique items are showcased by gifted artists and talented craftspeople. Admission is free.
Aug. 31-Sept. 2: Annual Kelpers Festival and Shake Rat Rendezvous, featuring tug of war competition between Moclips and Pacific Beach, kid’s parade, full parade in Pacific Beach on Sunday, and various logging competitions.
1: Ocean Shores Paddleathon. Saturday, Sept. 1. Oyhut Bay Seaside Village Canal. For kayak, canoe, and rowing enthusiasts. All Skill levels are welcome. Human-powered boat activities on the lakes and canals of Ocean Shores. Race, Poker Paddle, picnic, seminars and the latest in paddling gear at end-of-season prices.
21-23: Whale of Quilt Show at the Ocean Shores Convention Center, (509) 715-9082 for information.
6: Big Foot Brew Festival at Seabrook, for craft beer enthusiasts, with some of the regions’ best breweries featured from noon to 5 p.m.
16-21: Irish Music Festival. The West Coast’s largest Irish music festival: 6 stages, 3 venues, including Galway Bay and the Convention Center in Ocean Shores, and 30 great bands. Come tip a pint and kick up your heels. For more information and a schedule visit www.galwaybayevents.com
3-4: Run From the Rain Indoor Kite Fly in Ocean Shores, sponsored by Ocean Shores Kites (oceanshoreskites.com). Call (360) 289-4103 for more information.
23-25: Winter Fanta-Sea pre-Christmas festival of holiday gifts and vendors, Ocean Shores Convention Center, (360) 289-9586.