By: Jill Bellefontaine
Dozens of grandparents, parents, children and even their dogs gathered bright and early Saturday (May 26) morning for the annual Lake Echo Fishing Derby at Orenda Canoe Club. The Derby brought on an intense feeling of community pride and passion for the outdoors. There were breakfast sandwiches to start off the damp foggy morning, and hotdogs and hamburgers to close off the warm and sunny afternoon. 50/50 tickets and raffle tickets were for sale on various items all day.
People arrived with pedal boats, canoes, aluminum boats, speed boats and even a pontoon boat. Some fished with worms and lures while others fly fished. People fished from their boats, the docks, and the shore. The first catch of the day was a 1 pound 8 ounce fish caught by Cam Brown not long after 7am.
Steve Beaver and Scott Dent tied for the first-place prize for the heaviest trout (2 pounds 9 ounces) at this year’s fishing derby at the Orenda Canoe Club. Julia VanBommel won the Junior and Junior Girls Division with another 2 pound 9 ounce fish.
Malcolm Firth, one of the founding members of the Orenda Canoe Club 41 years ago, and the founder of the derby, passed away earlier this year. The derby has been renamed the Malcolm Firth Memorial Fishing Derby in his honour.