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Unfazed by wet weather, young anglers take part in Lexington Area Take Kids Fishing Day

Wet weather didn’t dampen the spirits of young anglers who took part in the Lexington Area Take Kids Fishing Day activities at Southland Church Lake on June 22.

The free event was a cooperative effort between the Union Sportsmen’s Alliance (USA), International Association of Sheet Metal, Air, Rail and Transportation Workers (SMART) Local 110 and the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources.

It was part of a series of free, community-based youth outreach activities organized under Work Boots on the Ground — the USA’s flagship conservation program — and was also supported by national conservation partners Provost Umphrey Law Firm, Pure Fishing, Plano Synergy and the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation.

Rainy weather didn’t stop Lexington youth from experiencing the joys of fishing last Saturday during the free, union-organized Take Kids Fishing Day event. (Photo provided)

Each of the children who participated received a free rod and reel donated by Pure Fishing, a pair of game calls from Plano Synergy, plus a bag of hooks, bobbers and sinkers, according to SMART Local 110 Manager Mark Adams.

“It was rainy and we were wet, but all the kids had a great experience,” he said. “Union volunteers from Local 110 were on hand to help them bait hooks and offer advice and assistance with hooking and landing fish.”

Overall, Local 110 members donated more than 60 hours of their time to plan and execute the Lexington Area Take Kids Fishing Day event, he said.

“We feel it’s an important part of our function in the community,” added Adams. “Not only to offer children a chance to go fishing, experience the outdoors and learn about conservation, but also to show our neighbors who we are and what our union is all about — providing people with an opportunity for solid employment and a secure way of life.”

Along with the Lexington-area event, volunteers from SMART Local 110 also hosted Take Kids Fishing Day activities in Paducah and Louisville over the weekend. In all, the activities involved 74 young anglers assisted by 36 volunteers.

With help from the USA, union locals across the country hold Take Kids Fishing Day events that are free to children and their families. While they help strengthen ties between union workers and the people in their neighborhoods, the primary goal is to encourage young people to enjoy the outdoors and teach them about conserving and preserving natural resources.

“Many children these days don’t get a chance to go fishing or participate in outdoor activities in general,” said Robert Stroede, USA conservation manager. “We know that involving kids in outdoor pursuits early on helps them develop a lasting interest in environmental conservation. It passes on a love and respect for the outdoors to the next generation.”

From Union Sportsmen’s Alliance

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