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Fishing Derby starts today with $8,800 in prizes, including $4K for biggest fish

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 3 August 2019 at 11:24 am

Photo by Tom Rivers: Kent Morgan, owner of Let It Ride Charters in Carlton, holds the grand prize fish from the 2018 fishing derby organized by the Albion Rotary Club. The 29-pound, 14-ounce salmon was caught by Morgan’s customer, Joseph Miller of Harrisburg, Pa. The big fish won the $4,000 grand prize.

The annual Rotary Fishing Derby starts today and continues until Aug. 18 with $8,800 in prizes available. The angler who catches the biggest fish in the derby wins $4,000.

Participants in the derby can enter fish in four divisions: Chinook salmon, brown trout, rainbow trout, and lake trout.

Besides $4,000 for the biggest fish, the four division leaders each get $500, followed by $300 for second, $200 for third, $100 for fourth and $50 for fifth.

There is also a $200 prize to the Orleans County resident who catches the biggest fish.

The derby is sponsored by the Albion Rotary Club, and proceeds go towards community projects. The Rotary Club has been organizing the derby for more than 30 years, seeing the event as a way to promote tourism businesses and the local fishing scene.

This year the derby has been rebranded as the Rotary Fishing Derby after being known as the Orleans County Fishing Derby.

Marlee Diehl, a member of the Albion Rotary Club, is chairwoman of the event and has lined up many businesses to sell registrations which are $15 a day or $25 for the entire 16-day derby. Click here to see the sites.

She wants to top at least 500 registrants for the derby.

The Rotary Club runs the derby to promote tourism and the fishing resources in the community. The derby is also a fundraiser for the Rotary Club, which uses the proceeds for community service projects.

“Orleans County is a destination,” Diehl said. “We’re fortunate to have a Tourism Department that realizes it and promotes our fishery.”

An awards celebration at 4 p.m. on Aug. 18 at the Carlton Rec Hall is open to the community. There will be sausage and hot dogs served, and a chance to see the winning fish.

The derby coincides with an initiative from Gov. Andrew Cuomo to offer free fishing on Lake Ontario, the St. Lawrence River and the lower Niagara River from Aug. 2 through Labor Day, Sept. 2.

For more on the derby, click here.

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