Fishing & Boating News

Youth Fishing Program Reaches National Television Audience

ESPN2 will feature Kids All-American Fishing Derby on Wal-Mart's Great Outdoors

by: Gordon Holland, Hooked on Fishing International

(May. 20, 2003 - KETCHUM, OK) On a Saturday, May 31, hundreds of Florida's young anglers will be taking over ESPN2's Wal-Mart's Great Outdoors show, in a unique change from the usual programming format. The late May episode (check local listings for air time) features the annual Wal-Mart Kids All-American Fishing Derby held in Lake City, FL and hosted by Columbia County and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

The Lake City derby held at Ponderosa Pond is one of over 1,800 events produced by Hooked On Fishing International in conjunction with community organizations nationwide. The young derby participants and their families provide the episode's soundtrack of excited laughter, delighted squeals and encouraging words that are sure to ring close to the hearts of the Wal-Mart's Great Outdoors viewers.

"We are thrilled to have the Wal-Mart Kids All-American Fishing Derby program exposed to a national TV audience," says Gordon Holland, executive director of Hooked On Fishing International. "Our hope is that parents will see the episode and be encouraged enough to seek an event in their area and get out with their kids for a day of fishing." Holland adds that parents can go to the program's official website,, navigate to the Derby Locator and find a derby near them by simply entering their zip code.

For 17 years, the Wal-Mart Kids All-American Fishing Derby has helped bring fishing to young people across the nation. The events are hosted by local service organizations, parks and recreation departments, scouting and other community-minded groups.

Organizations interested in hosting a Wal-Mart Kids All-American Fishing Derby event in 2004 can register electronically at HOFI provides the official derby kit which contains materials to promote the derby, an organizer handbook, prizes and goodies for each derby participant.

The official derby kit is provided to hosting organizations free of charge thanks to the generosity of the Wal-Mart Kids All-American Fishing Derby's corporate partners. In addition to title sponsor Wal-Mart, the program enjoys the support of Bar-S Foods, Berkley Powerbait, Berkley Trilene, ConAgra Foods, Dubble Bubble Bubble Gum, Eagle Claw, EverStart Batteries,, Fujifilm U.S.A., Johnson & Johnson First Aid Pocket Pals, Kellogg's, Kraft Foods, Laker Fishing Tackle and Zebco.