Ten-year-old Nicholas Gehringer, of Barto, participated in the Bally Rod and Gun Club Trout Rodeo on Saturday, May 17. He won the trophy for the largest fish caught during the rodeo which is for children up to 15 years old. His trout was 20 1/2 inches long. "The fish wasn't really pulling that hard, so it actually was pretty easy to bring it in since it wasn't fighting that much," Nicholas said.The rodeo took place from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. and the maximum amount of fish each child could catch was five. Along with the largest fish trophy, there was also a trophy given to the fastest boy and fastest girl to catch five fish. Nicholas described the rodeo as being exciting and fun.
Along with the 20 1/2 inch trout, Nicholas caught a 16 inch palomino that was tagged. There were tagged fish worth $5, $10, and $15, which goes to the person who catches it in the pond. Nicholas won $10 for his palomino catch.
Nicholas's dad, Donald, said the tags just started this year as an added bonus to the already great event. Donald was very proud that Nicholas caught the largest fish, but was just glad someone caught a big one.
"I'm glad someone caught the big fish and glad he won the trophy for the largest catch," Donald said.
In 2005, Nicholas was the fastest to catch his five fish and won a trophy for that at the Bally fish rodeo.
This year though, when Nicholas was at four fish, he was not worried about catching his fifth as fast as he could. Instead he wanted to catch the biggest fish.
Donald said Nicholas looked up at him after his fourth catch and said, "Dad. I wish I could catch one big one."
Once Nicholas reeled in the big one he had hoped for, he was at his five fish limit. Donald drove him home because there was still a lot of time left in the rodeo for others to catch. When they drove back to the pond to see if Nicholas still had the biggest catch at the end of the rodeo, they were pleased to find out that his catch stood as the biggest of the day.
Along with the trophy for having the largest fish, all of the children who caught five fish got to pick between a fishing net and a tackle box as prizes. Nicholas chose the fishing net as his prize.
"We're just grateful that the Bally Rod and Gun Club holds such an event for the kids and would like to thank all the sponsors of the event also," Donald said.