For the past seven years, Marcus Hook Councilman Joe Flynn organized a fishing derby in celebration of Father’s Day. This year, the borough’s pier was in the process of being repaired and Flynn was not certain the derby would take place.
Because the event is so important to the councilman and the community, he decided to go forward with the derby, but later in the summer- on Grandparent’s Day.
So, on Sunday, about 50 children, accompanied by parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles descended upon the Marcus Hook pier to enjoy a morning of fishing and camaraderie.
“At first I wasn’t sure what to do because of the remodeling,” Flynn said. “But, I know how much the kids look forward to the derby, so I thought the beginning of September would be a good time. There are not as many people here as there have been in recent years when it’s held on Father’s Day, but that’s to be expected. We have great people here who really love to fish.
Flynn, who is an an avid fisherman, hosts the popular event in honor of his late father, Elmer “Joe” Flynn, who taught him to enjoy fishing.
“Today the weather is beautiful and the kids are having a good time,” said Flynn. “It’s very rewarding to see everyone so happy.”
Flynn purchases a number of fishing rods as well as trophies and other prizes for the excited children. Special prizes are awarded to the winners; however, all of the young participants are given rods at the end of the event.
Grace Roth, 83, was on hand with her daughter, Debbie Napier, watching her great grandchildren, Tyler and Virgilio Napier participate in the derby.
“I have had a wonderful day,” she said. “Any time I can watch the boys is a happy time for me.” Her grandson Tyler added that the day was special for him, because he caught the very first fish of the day.
At the end of the event, it was Marcus Hook resident Jayden Cooper who was the big derby winner with a 24 inch catfish.
“I had a great time he said,” grinning ear to ear.