For many, a day out fishing is a way to exhale and escape their problems.
If you’ve woken up early to go fishing before, you too may have felt it.
The howl of the engine shuts off, and suddenly, silence. You look around and see nothing but miles of undisturbed water reflecting the sunrise. For a moment, you’re free.
On March 31, the Lake Murray Yacht Club and the C.A.S.T. for Kids Foundation will give the soothing power of fishing to those who truly deserve it — children with special needs.
Event organizers hope to take 40 children out on the water. The event is free of charge and will be held from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. In addition to the fishing trip, each child will receive a fishing pole, tackle box, t-shirt and photo plaque.
Lake Murray Yacht Club members will provide boat transportation for the children.
Lake Murray Yacht Club Member Diane Baldwin volunteered her boat and day to a similar event at Thunderbird Lake recently. She said seeing the children on her boat light up and smile because they were on the water was special.
“It’s not all about catching fish,” Baldwin said. “One child in my boat was in a wheelchair and couldn’t speak. He couldn’t hold a pole but each time we’d start the boat, he’d bust out laughing.”
C.A.S.T. Regional Director Jim Behnken said in a press release the foundation has connected over 25,000 children with special needs with volunteers to take them fishing.
“The day provides the children encouragement, enjoyment and a sense of accomplishment,” Behnken said. “While the volunteers are rewarded by the children’s excitement and their smiles.”
Baldwin said the Yacht Club has done the event in prior years but this year is being done on a larger scale, special guests like the Oklahoma Highway Patrol boat will make an appearance. Following the event, the Club will host an Easter egg hunt, lunch and an awards ceremony.
Openings to sign up for the event are still available. To register for a spot, Visit www.castforkids.org to register. A parent or guardian is required to attend with the children.