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March 20, 2008
Central Square Man Organizes Free Fishing Seminar March 29
By Sara Kubiniec, Student Intern, Oswego State University
Mike Riordan’s memories of growing up in Central Square center around his family and the many hours that his father, Don Riordan, spent with him teaching him how to fish. Mike lost his best friend when his father passed away five years ago, but he was left with a lifetime of knowledge and memories about fishing. He wanted to be able to share that knowledge with other people.
He found through the Internet an “Angler’s Legacy” commitment to introduce at least one person to fishing each year. Riordan took this pledge and felt that if he could teach more than just one or two people a year then he would be successful in sharing his knowledge with others.
He and his wife, Wendy, decided to organize a free seminar last April at the Calvary Baptist Church in Brewerton. Their goal was to show at least 50 people how to fish. By the end of the day, 150 people had learned how to fish at the first “Take Me Fishing” seminar.
“My intention is to help parents and kids become familiar with the basics, so that they could go to the local park, river, lake, or fishing hole and have a successful time of fishing,” said Riordan. “The best part about this event was that there was a group of inner-city kids who got to come to the seminar and see fish for the very first time. Bass Pro Shops donated poles so that these kids could learn how to fish.”
He also was loaned live fish from the NYS fish hatchery and was given fishing rods, reels, tackle, and more from local retailers including Walmart, Dick’s Sporting Goods, and Gander Mountain. Others donated funds and Riordan was able to buy prizes and equipment to make beginner tackle boxes for everyone who attended.
The second annual “Take Me Fishing” seminar will be from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, March 29, at the Calvary Baptist Church at the corner of Rt. 11 and Mud Mill Road in Brewerton.
“The Calvary Baptist congregation has adopted this as a way of serving the community,” said Riordan. The event is free and open to the public. More than 30 members of the congregation have volunteered to help with the event and many have made monetary donations as well.
“We felt that it would be a perfect time to host the event with the spring trout opener on April 1,” Riordan added. “This will give parents and children enough time to learn about the sport and try their hand at it.”
Activities include a scavenger hunt, casting contest, and guest speakers from the state Department of Environmental Conservation and Bass Pro Shops.
Topics being covered at this year’s event will be:
- Central New York freshwater fish, with booklets being given to each participant.
- What’s in Oneida Lake and the rivers?
- Fishing tackle, rods, reels, boxes, lures, hooks, and nets
- Bait, worms, leaches, grubs, and crayfish
- Spooling a reel, and tying hooks
- Casting, netting and stringing fish
- DEC rules and regulations; and
- Angler ethics
For more information call 668-7150. For photos of last year’s event visit http://www.cbcbrewerton.org/photos.php?albumID=6813&. For information about the angler’s legacy pledge, visit www.takemefishing.org
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