New Britain City Journal

New Britain's Weekly Online Newspaper


Annual City Fishing Derby Scheduled For April 14


Get your rods and reels cleaned as the New Britain Parks and Recreation Department annual Fishing Derby is to be held at the pond in Stanley Quarter Park is coming quickly.

The event is set for Saturday, April 14th, from 9 a.m. to 12 noon. It is a fun, family-oriented activity for those who are an expert angler or novice fisherman.

About 300-400 people show up to the event to try to catch around 250 fish, mostly trout.

“The fishing derby is an annual tradition in our City that marks the start of spring and the opportunity to enjoy our wonderful parks during the warmer months,” said Mayor Erin Stewart. “I’d like to encourage our families to come out to Stanley Quarter and create some long lasting memories during this fun filled event.”

According to Craig Bowman, Recreation Services Coordinator, the event is rain or shine.

“Believe it or not, the fish are more apt to bite when it’s cloudy out,” he said.

Participants 15 years of age and younger are able to register for the children’s division, participants over the age of 16 must register in the adult division. Children registered by Friday, April 13th receive a free gift bag the day of the derby (while supplies last).

Participants that qualify for the children’s division and are not pre-registered must pay a $1 entry fee on the day of the Derby. Adult participants can pre-register for $8 or pay $10 on the day of the event. Registrants must supply their own rods, bait, and tackle to participate.

“You should bring your own fishing rods and equipment as well as anything else to make the fishing experience the best it can be,” said Bowman. “We recommend patrons not bringing instruments or playing loud music during their fishing experience. We do not provide rods, poles, or special equipment. There’s a good chance we will be able to provide some bait and lures to the first 100 pre-registered kids.”

Registration forms are available in the Parks, Recreation and Community Services Office, Room 302, of City Hall. City Hall is located at 27 West Main Street in New Britain.

There are four children’s age groups: under 5 years of age, 5 to 8 years, 9 to 12 years, and 13 to 15 years of age. Prizes are awarded for the heaviest fish, longest fish, and the most fish caught (which means NO LIMITS!) in each specific age group. Local businesses, clubs, and private donor contributions pay for the prizes won. If you or your business is interested in donating to this year’s derby, please contact the parks and recreation office at 860-826-3360.

In addition to prizes for the division previously listed, children also have the chance to catch tagged fish.

“Some examples of prizes include tackle boxes, fishing rods, bait and tackle, fishing lures,” added Bowman. “Anyone who catches a tagged fish is able to win Cabela’s gift cards or deep sea fishing trips donated by Rowledge Pond (which stocks the pond).”

New Britain Parks and Recreation Department accepts registrations on a first-come first-serve basis. Daily registrations are accepted 8:30 a.m. to 3:45 p.m., Monday – Friday, in the Parks, Recreation and Community Services office located at 27 West Main Street, Room 302. Mail-in registrations are also accepted. Please call the Parks, Recreation and Community office for more information. For updated program information, follow Parks and Recreation on Facebook at New Britain Parks and Recreation and on Twitter and Instagram @NBParknRec.