Fish, Family & Fun

Jun. 07, 2014 @ 04:04 PM

The weather was just right for fishing Saturday morning at Bob Strayhorn’s pond just outside Chapel Hill.

And almost 200 youngsters took the opportunity to do so.

Eleven-year-old Samantha Andino was one of those participants. She’s been participating in the annual Fishing Rodeo for four years. Samantha is known for her hats — ones she creates specifically for the event. This year, she sported a pink whale with ocean waves and fish pinned on. She designs them specifically for the rodeo.

Her mother, Tammy Andino, said the rodeo is an opportunity for family bonding, especially in nature.

“I love it here … and my daughter loves it out here too,” Tammy Andino said. “It’s a great opportunity to see all the families together connecting, getting down to basics, you know? Everything is so electronic these days. This is something basic and fun.”

Samantha enjoys being able to fish because of the excitement of actually catching a fish. By 10:30 a.m. she had caught one fish, a seven-incher, which was a bit small, but not the smallest, the weighers told her.

She encourages others to participate in future rodeos.

“It’s really a fun time to get together and have lots of fun fishing,” Samantha said.

Julie Collins, recreation supervisor for Carrboro Parks and Recreation has been working with the Fishing Rodeo for three years, but she says it’s been around for more than 30 years.

“Some people [that] come are now coming back with their kids, and they had participating when they were kids,” she said.

The rodeo focuses its attention on younger anglers, those between the ages of 3 and 15.

“It’s a different type of sport so to speak, it’s another thing to expose them to,” Collins said. Focusing on the younger range also introduces them to something they might not do other wise, she said.

“Hopefully it gets them interested in fishing,” she said. “I think even for the parents … they might not be fisher-people themselves, so it’s even getting a family activity.”