The 22nd Annual Bowden Fishing Derby is to be held Saturday at the Bowden Fish Hatchery outside of Elkins.
"I think it's a good event for the kids," said Mike Owen, who works with the Monongahela National Forest Service. "It's great to see them and their families enjoying each other and the outdoors."
Events will include free fishing for kids, awarding of prizes and a casting contest. The derby is sponsored by the Elkins Parks and Recreation Commission, the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources, and the Monongahela National Fores.
Registration is available on site and starts at 7:30 a.m. Students from pre-school through 8th grade are allotted separate times for Put and Take Pond access. Catch and Release Pond fishing hours are from 8 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
All participating children must be registered by completing the appropriate form. The event is for children ages 3-14 only and each child must be accompanied by an adult. Adults may assist the children if necessary.
The derby is meant as a good opportunity for families to enjoy a day outside and for kids to latch onto an outdoor activity. The Division of Natural Resources is using it as part of the Hooked On Fishing, Not On Drugs curriculum. It also coincides with a free fishing day, when anyone of any age can participate whether they have a fishing license or not.
For more information, visit www.fs.usda.gov, or contact Elkins Parks and Recreation at 636-3960, the state Division of Natural Resources at 637-0245, and the Monongahela National Forest at 636-1800.