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Secrets from the Wal-Mart Kids All-American Fishing Derby

April 12, 2004 - KETCHUM, Okla. Young, beginning anglers have been heard to ask, "Don,t we need to fish from a boat to catch fish?

Parents and guardians, take note. The correct answer is, of course, "no.

The proof? Tell your young fishing partners about the fish-catching
success of the Wal-Mart Kids All-American Fishing Derby, the national
program that hosts more than 300,000 bank anglers at fun fishing events
held in every state. By the way, they,re free and all kids from 6 to 16 are

An inquisitive young angler may ask, "How did they catch their fish?

To answer that question, here are the top five fishing secrets revealed by
the successful young anglers, tips compiled by the people at Hooked on
Fishing International, the Ketchum, Okla. company that produces the
successful coast-to-coast youth angling program.

When you arrive at the pond, choose your fishing location so you can fish
with the "either-or technique. That means being able to cast your minnow
to water that is either lit by the sun or in the shade, casting to water
with either weeds or clear areas, and casting to water with both shallow
and deep spots. If a creek drains into the pond, that,s a good place to
fish because it brings fresh water into the pond, which fish like, with a
current that brings the food to them. Fish don,t like to swim in the
current. They,ll be hiding behind a log or a rock. Let the bait drift in
the current to where the fish are waiting.

The most successful young anglers use worms or minnows and put the bait
under a float which they watch very carefully. The secret, they say, is to
let the fish take the bobber completely under the water and start to swim
away. That,s the time to strike. Coach your young pro on the importance of
patience. If they strike too soon, while the fish is just nibbling, all
they do is take the food away from the fish.

Successful anglers on the Wal-Mart Kids All-American Fishing Derby trail
say that if they,re not catching any fish, they change something. First,
they change the depth of the bait by sliding the float up or down the line.
Usually, fish are close to the bottom which makes it important to get the
bait deeper. If that doesn,t work, the young anglers change bait or even
move to another area.

Good pond anglers know that pond fish scare easily and understand how
important it is for people on the bank to speak softly and walk quietly.
They also say they wear natural colors like green, blue, brown or even camo
to help them blend into the background.

The young anglers who most often catch fish say when they get a fish on the
line they reel it in slowly but always fast enough to keep the line tight
between the fish and the tip of the rod. If it,s a big fish that wants to
run, they stop reeling until the fish has turned and started to swim back
toward the angler.

Adults who want to take their young anglers fishing can find events on the
official web site of the Wal-Mart Kids All-American Fishing Derby --- Go to the Derby Locator section and enter your zip
code. The results will show the closest derbies, indicating where and when
they will be held and, often, how to get there.

The Wal-Mart Kids All-American Fishing Derby is made possible by the
generous support of the program,s corporate partners including the title
sponsor, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., BAND-AID® BRAND ADHESIVE BANDAGES, Bar-S Foods Co., Berkley PowerBait, Berkley Trilene, DMF Bait Co., Dubble Bubble
Bubble Gum, Eagle Claw, Edy,s Grand Ice Cream, EverStart Batteries,, Fujifilm, Kraft Foods, Laker Fishing Tackle, PURELL®
Instant Hand Sanitizer, Repel Insect Repellent, Zebco and Nestle Waters
North America, which markets the natural spring water brands of Arrowhead,
Deer Park, Ice Mountain, Ozarka, Poland Spring, Zephyrhills, and Nestle
Pure Life.

* * * * * *

A FISHING TIP FOR KIDS FROM SEBASTIAN T. BOBBER: Wear "polarized sun glasses when you,re fishing. Not only does it make it easier to see fish
and things in the water, put it protects your eyes from the suns dangerous
rays, especially those reflecting off the water. Hey, visit me at Sebastian's Corner at I've got more fishing tips for you.




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