Each year for nearly half a century, kids have grabbed their fishing
poles and put on their favorite country costumes, looking like Huck Finn
and Becky Thatcher from "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer" by Mark
One of the most popular themes in
fishing derbies for kids happens to be based on the popular fiction
novel by famous author Mark Twain named The Adventures of Tom Sawyer.
The novel was published in 1876 and is considered one of the great
American novels, documenting the lives of youth along the Mississippi
River. A few year later in 1885, Twain wrote Adventures of
Huckleberry Finn, which also gained world recognition.
In Huntington Beach, California,
an annual fishing event celebrates youth, adventure and the novel by not
only calling itself the Huck Finn Fishing Derby, but by allowing kids to
play the roles of the novels' characters in a costume contest that
awards top prizes (often a bicycle), to the best dressed look-alike Huck
Finn and Becky Thatcher from this classic novel, a must-read for
kids in school.
Each year the Huntington Beach
Huck Finn Fishing Derby is launched from the
Huntington Beach Pier and
the excitement begins as the kids ages 6 to 15 begin wheeling in the
catch. This annual event provides fun entertainment for children on a
Saturday morning usually in in early August. In addition to awarding the
grand prizes for costumes, the largest and smallest fish also win a
prize for their proud anglers.
Taking place from 8 am to noon, the annual event takes place is held at
Huntington Beach Pier at Pacific Coast Highway and Main Street with
registration around 8 a.m. and fishing from 9:30 to Noon.
Participants bring their own poles and tackle, with often over 300 kids
showing up to cast a line and seek a prize.
The event is sponsored by the City
of Huntington Beach Community Services Department and is sometimes
hosted by Cliff Johnson, the owner and operator of Let's Go Fishing and
by Western Fishing & Boating Radio. Major Participating Organizations
include: Sports Chalet,
Big Fish Tackle, Carl's JR. Restaurants, Huntington Beach Fishing &
Recreation Club and Surf City Store.
For additional information, please call Dottie Hughes, Community
Services, at (714) 536-5262.
Where to stay: The public is
invited to bring their children to attend this event held above the
beaches of Huntington Beach. Several hotels are within walking distance
and view of the event and include
Hilton Waterfront Resort,
Huntington Beach Hyatt Resort and
Best Western Huntington Beach Inn.
What to see & do in Huntington
Beach: For a
list of annual Huntington Beach events, you can get some vacation
and travel ideas by catching up on what's happening in Surf City.