The 31 Annual Cove Lake Fishing Derby sponsored by Paris Rotary Club, U.S. Forest Service, Arkansas Game & Fish Commission and the National Wild Turkey Federation was held on Saturday, June 8, 2019. 80 kids, ages 4-9, participated in this year’s derby, with fifty-six kids weighing in fish, for a total of 208 lbs. of catfish.

Special prizes and trophies were given to the three heaviest stringers in two age groups (4-6 and 7-9), smallest fish caught by a hook and tagged fish. The first place prize for the heaviest stringer (Trophy, Explorer K2 kayak and life jacket) went to Zayden Capo of Paris, AR (7 lbs. 15 oz.) in the 7-9 age group and Imagine Raines of Paris, AR (6 lbs. 5 oz.) in the 4-6 age group. Second place prize (Trophy, 4-person raft and life jacket) went to Carter Meredith of Alma, AR in the 7-9 age group (6 lbs. 7 oz.) and Pete Bucella of Paris, AR (6 lbs. 3 oz.) in the 4-6 age group. Third place prize (Trophy, 2-person raft and life jacket) went to Maggie Rust of Alma, AR (6 lbs. 1 oz.) in the 7-9 age group and Riley Floren of Paris, AR (6 lbs. 7 oz.) in the 4-6 age group. The smallest fish caught on a hook this year was 6 3/8-inches in length. The smallest fish prize (trophy and two-person travel hammock) went to Caleb Ault of Clarksville, AR. The tagged fish prize (Zebco 33 fishing rod and reel) was awarded to Marley Watson of Magazine, AR.

The Paris Rotary Club, U.S. Forest Service, Arkansas Game & Fish Commission and the National Wild Turkey Federation would like to thank the following donors for helping make this derby a success: Arvest Bank, Arkansas Family Eye Care, Bob Rogers Chevrolet, CV’s Family Foods, Ed Williams, First National Bank, Hazel’s Cabins, Jim Richardson, Khilling Printing, M&M Construction, Mickey Oates-Logan County Treasurer, Paris Dental Clinic, Paris Ford, Paris Schools, Rexene Clarkston, Rob and Cindy Kopack, Richard and Charlotte Carpenter, Roller Funeral Home, Subiaco Abby, Subiaco Farmer’s Cooperative, Subiaco Federal Credit Union, Tom Spivey, D.D.S., and Wilkerson Auto Sales.

“A special thanks goes to the Logan County Dive Team who volunteered their services as certified divers to check the fishnet. Also, thanks to the Logan County EMS for attending and making the derby a safe event,” said Wildlife Biologist Mindi Lawson.

Fishing derbies are an excellent way to provide kids with an opportunity to have some good clean fun and experience some of the things that the great outdoors has to offer them.

“With the continued support from the local community, we will have many more successful derbies. We hope to see you there next year for the 32 annual event,” said Lawson.

All children that participated in the fishing derby received prizes of tackle boxes donated by Paris Schools and Bass Pro Shops.