Youth fishing seminar nets fun

When Alexa Triden opened the small nylon tackle box at the Youth Fishing Seminar, surprised grins broke out. She, her sister Chloe, and friend Samantha Beckers admired how one of the three trays already had tackle in it.

The three girls were among the 135 children, ages 4 to 13, attending the annual event put on by the New Prague Sportsman’s Club. The tackle boxes were given out to every child who attended the Saturday, Feb. 16, seminar at the Central Education Campus gym in New Prague. The free event drew families from New Prague, Elko New Market, Prior Lake, Sartell and other communities.

"It’s great," said Jarrod Roufs of Elko New Market. It was his first time with his family at the event. "I love that their giving kids exposure to fishing techniques and getting them ready for the summer."

Others had been attending the event for several years, ranging from families with several children to volunteers. Brothers Corey and Ryan Brandt have been making the drive from their homes each year. Corey, of Minnetonka, and Ryan, of Forest Lake, teach children about the various lures used to catch fish.

The seminar also taught about the rules of fishing. The New Prague Times outdoor columnist Bill Bartusek Jr. and Larry Schoenecker of New Prague demonstrated how to fillet a fish. There were also several prizes from gear to clothing.

"I’m happy," said Landon Brandt, son of Chris Brandt of New Prague, who won a guided fishing trip offered by Marty Hahn. The second grader from Falcon Ridge Elementary School was looking forward to the trip, saying it would be "fun."