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300,000 young anglers participated
in the Wal-Mart Kids All American Fishing Derby

DEC. 1, 2003 - KETCHUM, Okla. Producers of the Wal-Mart Kids All American Fishing Derby announced that Riley Horgan, 12, of Minnetrista, MN, and Rio Kadake, 10, Kake, AK, have been named freshwater and saltwater national grand prize winners of the Fujifilm "Big Fish" Contest.

Horgan caught a 7-lb, 5-oz carp, earning a $500 U.S. Savings Bond and the freshwater title from Fujifilm USA. Kadake caught a 62-pound halibut,
earning a $500 U.S. Savings Bond and the title for the largest saltwater
fish. The young anglers caught their fish while participating in local
youth fishing events produced by Hooked on Fishing International, Ketchum, Okla., with the help of local adult volunteers and corporate sponsors.

Horgan and Kadake were state winners as well and their names are included in a list of all winners on, the official website of the "World's Largest Kids' Fishing Program." In 2003, approximately 300,000 anglers aged 5 to 16 participated in 1,822 fishing events in all 50 states.

HOFI also announced national winners for two other sponsored categories. Joshua Sponaugle, 9, Salem, NJ, won the Zebco Kids Casting Contest, winning a $1,000 U. S. Savings Bond. Sponaugle and other participants qualified by taking part in the casting event. The winner was selected in a drawing of entries from all the young anglers who cast at targets during local derbies.

Scott Corsi, 11, Aurora, OH, won Kellogg's "I Caught a Fish" contest,
earning a $500 Wal-Mart Shopping Card. Corsi's catch qualified him and
others who caught fish during the youth fishing events for the "I Caught a
Fish" drawing. Tommy Joe Nickell, Jr., age 6, of Parker, KS, won second
place and a $250 Wal-Mart Shopping Card. Phoebe Hobson, age 6, of Graham, WA won third place and a $100 Wal-Mart Shopping Card.

The awards signaled the end of the 2003 derby program, its seventeenth
year. In addition to Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., the Kids All-American Fishing
Derby program benefits from its partnerships with Bar-S foods Company,
Berkley PowerBait, Berkley Trilene, ConAgra Foods, Dubble Bubble Bubble Gum, Eagle Claw, EverStart Batteries,, Fujifilm, Johnson & Johnson First Aid Pocket Pals, Kellogg's, Kraft Foods, Laker Fishing Tackle, and Zebco.HOFI predicts the number of events will jump from to more than 2,000 events in 2004. Organizations interested in hosting an event in 2004 can apply online at for a free derby kit which contains all of the items necessary to put on a local derby, including, an organizer handbook, prizes and goodies for each derby participant.

The organization currently receives strong support from state fish and game departments, the U.S. Forest Service, parks and recreation departments, chambers of commerce, YMCAs, fishing clubs, scouting groups, and civic and service organizations such as the Optimists, Lions, Kiwanis, and Elks.




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