Children from ages 3 to 13 are invited to compete in a free fishing tournament sponsored by the Brandon Elks Lodge on April 13.
The 10th annual Hooked on Fishing not Drugs tournament will reward children who catch the largest and most fish in each age category.
In addition to the friendly competition, which last year attracted about 150 children and more than 200 adults, Elks will promote drug awareness and share tips with the children about saying “no” to drugs.
“We find that in doing these types of programs across the country, we may save one or two youths or maybe even save a parent,” said Don Cornett, drug awareness chairman for the Brandon Elks. “Some of these children know more about drug addiction and drugs than their parents do.”
Rods, reels, bait and tackle are provided for participants to use.
Each registered child will receive a Hooked on Fishing not Drugs T-shirt, some anti-drug literature, crayons and a toy.
Fishing will begin at 8:30 a.m. Lunch is at 11:30 a.m. and includes free hot dogs, hamburgers, pizza, water and soda for all attendees.
Prizes include sporting goods, such as rods and reels, tents, sleeping bags, footballs and soccer balls.
An adult must accompany each child.
Pre-registration is required by April 11, by contacting Cornett, at (813) 917-9872. Registrants can get directions to the Dover lake from Cornett.
“It’s wonderful to see these children out there,” Cornett said. “It’s a fun-filled day. The beauty of it is some children who first came at age three have come back every year; now they’re 13.”