Barbour hosts first HOF event

Kids of all ages lined the banks of the Belington Reservior Saturday morning for the inaugural Hooked on Fishing event in Barbour County.

This event was sponsored by the Belington Police Department, but was a result of the tremendous cooperation from the community. The fact that it was a drug, alcohol and tobacco free activity was stressed throughout the day. Children received tickets, which were put into a drawing for a free fishing pole or fishing accessories.

More than 165 children were present throughout the morning.

“It’s just a great event for the kids.” said West Virginia Division of Natural Resources officer J.A. Prickett.

Rich Mace, from Mace’s Pharmacy, said, “We’re just here because we want to promote a drug, alcohol,and tobacco free activity for the kids.”

Linda Watson, who conceived the event, said, “It’s always good to promote a healthy lifestyle, and children need to see that there are things to do in this small town. This is our first time for Hooked on Fishing, but it won’t be the last!”

Debbie Schoonover, from the Belington Wellness Center, Belington Medical Clinic, and Brandon Wellness Center, had a duck game and goldfish snacks for the children.

“We are a community based health center just trying to get to know more people in the community and educate them in a healthy lifestyle,” she said. “Not only are our services available for when you are sick, but also preventative medicine for the entire family.

“Our educational material today is about safety tips, nutritional facts, and healthy eating,” Schoonover said. “It’s a great event because it promotes a healthy outdoor lifestyle. It’s all about family and fun.”

The event even featured a visit from royalty, as Miss Barbour County 2012, Bridget Booth made an appearance.

From the excitement on the children’s faces when they caught a fish, to the happiness when they won a door prize, attendees said the event was a tremendous success. There were even volunteers present to fillet the fish, so the kids could take home their catch, all ready for the frying pan!

Councilman Richard Cox said that he would like to thank the Belington Police Department, Police Reserves, Belington City employees and all who worked hard to make the event possible.

“It was a success and I’m looking forward to next year,” Cox said.