by Greg Kucharewski
Youth Education Report
(from Jersey Coast Anglers Association November 2008 Newsletter)
YOUTH EDUCATION AWARD NOMINATIONS
There is still time to submit nominations for the JCAA Youth Education Award at the next JCAA meeting. Nominations can also be e-mailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
GOVERNOR’S SURF FISHING TOURNAMENT
Over 300 children received “Hooked On Fishing Not On Drugs” goodie bags for participating at the New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife and Jersey Coast Anglers Association’s drug awareness activity booth at the Governor’s 17th Annual Surf Fishing Tournament. Special thanks go out to my wife Catherine Kucharewski and Eileen Smith for assisting at the Jersey Coast Anglers Association’s “Knot Tying” booth. Children received a spool of STREN line for tying an improved clinch knot on a knot tying board. We also thank the many volunteers, judges and sponsors of the Governor’s Surf Fishing Tournament that make the tournament a great success. This year children and their families had an opportunity to catch Fluke during the tournament. If they caught an eligible Fluke they could release or keep the fish for table fare and win a prize. Judges measured all fish caught and recorded length and amount of fish caught. All the data was recorded as during the past seventeen years to use as an historical fishing snapshot for the GSFT.
This year we had extra help to cast baits out beyond the sandbar thanks to Ken Jelnicki and Al Harrison. Ken and Al donated their time to assist disabled anglers fishing the Governor’s Surf Fishing Tournament to cast a line more than 500 feet with the use of their Surf Rocket. The Surf Rocket works with compressed air and shoots frozen prepared baits out past the sandbar to give anglers extra casting distance. The Surf Rocket system worked very well for the physically challenged anglers and gave them the extra edge to get their bait into the strike zone. Maurice Neely III
has fished the Governor’s Surf Fishing Tournament for ten years and always assisted his fishing buddy Clarence with casting and getting him to the waters edge. Due to a pulmonary disorder, Clarence has difficulty walking in the sand and the IBSP beach wheelchairs also assist Clarence with getting him within a safe distance of the surf. This year Clarence had the opportunity of utilizing the Surf Rocket to get his bait in the strike zone. Other disabled anglers also enjoyed the use of the Surf Rocket and had a chance to reel in some fish. They caught mostly Sea Robins but had a chance to reel in a fish. One disabled angler commented that she planned to purchase the Surf Rocket because she had difficulty casting. She mentioned she would not need waders and could fish from the comfort of a beach chair because of the casting distance the Surf Rocket got her line out to where the fish were feeding.
MANASQUAN CHALLENGE NIGHT
I just wanted to mention that the Shore Surf Club managed to win the Manasquan and Shore Surf Club Challenge Night. Morgan Murphy managed to catch a Striped Bass and 33” Bluefish that won the challenge night on October 10, 2008. Captain Morgan is the Shore Surf Club’s youngest member and has been known to fish harder the any of our members. When he was five years old he caught me in the seat of my pants and I have the scars to prove it. Morgan worked very hard on the Norma K III as a mate and set his goals to receive his captain’s license. He is a dedicated angler and we are very proud of his achievements. He is one of the few youngsters that loves fishing and provides for his family. Morgan, thanks for helping us win the Manasquan Challenge night.