Saturday, July 22, 2000

Reeling in some fish, fun

150 try luck in 12th annual program at Prisoners Lake

By Ray Schaefer
Enquirer Contributor

        COVINGTON — It took Sabrina Wissman less than a minute of her first fishing trip to pull in her first catch.

        Sabrina, 11, was one of about 150 children at Devou Park's Prisoners Lake for the 12th annual Canepole Classic. The event is part of the city's Neighborhoods, Parks and Recreation Department's summer recreation program.

        Children ages 5-14 used basic ingredients — pole, earthworm, hook and line — to try to snag some of the 1,500 pounds of catfish the city added to the lake Thursday. Assistant Recreation Director David Buerger said it's the only way many of the children get to experience fishing.

        Sabrina, a sixth-grader at Glenn O. Swing Elementary, figured it took “about 10 seconds” to cast, catch and release her 20-inch catfish.

        “I like it,” Sabrina said of the experience. “Angela Hall (a friend) helped me pull it in. It was grayish.”

        According to Laurie Risch of Behringer-Crawford Museum, Prisoners Lake was originally one of several limestone quarries in Devou Park. Mining there began in the mid-1910s.

        The site received its name because prisoners from the old Covington Jail dug out the rock, said Charles King, a local-history librarian at Kenton County Public Library.

        At the Canepole Classic, Nathan Edmondson of Latonia Elementary caught a 22-inch catfish to claim the title of biggest fish. Jesse Rider of Ninth District Elementary and Amy Cooper of Glenn O. Swing tied for smallest fish with their 5-inchers, and Amy's two fish were the most caught.

        “I was happy,” Nathan said about catching his fish. “It was ... humongous.”

        Georgetta Rice, an eighth-grader at Holmes Junior High, was the lone entry in the nonfish division: She hooked a turtle.

        Others, like 12-year-old Kenyel Kennedy, had trouble getting past baiting the hook.

        “Yuck, yuck, yuck, yuck,” Kenyel said. “I'm not touching no worm this summer. I don't like worms.”

        Good thing Kayla Watts, 13, was nearby to handle the situation. “I ain't scared of them,” Kayla said. “They're just little creatures.”

        The citywide Covington Fishing Derby for children ages 5-14 begins with registration at 9 a.m. today and fishing from 10 a.m.-noon. Though Sabrina liked Friday's trip, she won't be a part of today's action — she declared her fishing career over Friday about an hour after it started.

        “I'm afraid,” she said. “I think one of them's going to bite me.”


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