WOODS ‘N’ WATER: Hey, kids! Derby day returns to Mirror Lake

WOODS ‘N’ WATER: Hey, kids! Derby day returns to Mirror Lake


May 8, 2021: Mark it in your calendar for some outdoor fun for the whole family because it is Family Fishing Day in Connecticut.

No license is required that day for anyone to fish.

But, wait, it gets even better than that. May 8 will also feature the Annual Carl D’Addario, City of Meriden, and Meriden Rod & Gun Club Annual Children’s Fishing Derby at Mirror Lake in Hubbard Park.

Over the years this has been a special day for both kids and families to get out into our great outdoors and get in some fishing time.

Unfortunately, the derby had to be postponed last year because of all of the misery cast upon us by the COVID-19 pandemic.

This year, those involved in the derby feel that it is now safe enough to hold the event once again. Of course, there will be some safety restrictions, but nothing that we can’t handle.

The derby is for kids 15-years-old and younger. It features some really neat prizes for just about every participant.

One of the exceptions this year: There will be NO hotdogs served at the derby. Instead, participants will be able to get a bag of snacks and a cold drink. This is just a safety precaution.

The derby will run from 10 a.m. to noon, with signups beginning at 9 a.m. Also, the CT DEEP Inland Fisheries trout stocking truck will be on hand from 8:30 to give participants a chance to stock trout into Mirror Lake before the derby starts.

Mirror Lake will be closed to all adult fishing until the end of the derby. Once it’s over, everyone can fish and do not need a license to do so.

It is a one-day deal. All adult anglers will need a 2021 CT Fishing License to fish Mirror Lake after May 8.

Participants are asked to bring, if possible, a clean five-gallon pail to be used to stock the trout, although the Meriden Rod & Gun Club will have a few buckets on hand for the stocking. The DEEP will not be providing buckets for the stocking this year.

This children’s fishing derby has gained popularity over the years and it was with a great deal of dismay that it had to be canceled last year. Hopefully, that is all behind us now.

However, to be on the safe side, all participants will be required to wear face masks. There will be NO exceptions.

Social distancing will be the rule, except for families fishing together. Given the size of Mirror Lake, this should not be a problem.

There have been many children’s fishing derbies held at Mirror Lake over the years and this one has been gaining in popularity every year.

The DEEP stocking truck will have plenty of hungry trout for the kids to stock, and it is OK for them to stock them right in front of their chosen place to fish. I do recommend that families with kids get there early to give the kids a chance to stock some trout.

As we mentioned earlier, the City of Meriden, Meriden Rod & Gun Club, Carl D’Addario Annual Children’s Fishing Derby takes place May 8 from 10 a.m. to noon rain or shine, with signups starting at 9 a.m.

There will also be bait in the form of nightcrawlers donated by the Fishin’ Factory of Southington available for anyone who needs them.

Once again, face masks will be required for everyone in attendance, strictly as a safety precaution, along with minimal social distancing since this is an outdoor event. It has been a long, strenuous year for all of us. Let’s celebrate with the Children’s Fishing Derby and a no fishing license day for adult anglers.

Regarding our trout waters, the DEEP Inland Fisheries has been working at a steady pace stocking trout. From the info I have, just about all of the trout waters have received stockings. For me, one of the biggest surprises is the lack of trout fishermen on the Quinnipiac River. I do know that it has been stocked.

Black Pond is still producing trout and Baldwin’s Pond got a stocking that made some of the anglers that fished it very happy. The only drawback on Baldwin’s Pond is that some of it is pretty shallow in spots, making it tough for anglers to get at the trout.

The Coginchaug River in Middlefield has also been stocked and reports of some nice trout coming out of the Coginchaug have been coming into us.

With the arrival of spring, we welcome the appearance of some of the song birds that left our northern climate for warmer temperatures during the winter. Along with my favorite, the red-winged blackbird, hummingbirds and orioles are on their way, if they haven’t already arrived.

My darlin’ Edna uses a hummingbird feeder filled with sweet nectar that she makes herself. It contains one part sugar to four parts fresh water. Mix it well before putting it into the feeder.

Also keep in mind that hummingbirds are attracted to the color red, and red flowers in the area will also help bring them in.

Orioles have a sweet tooth, especially for oranges and grape jelly. (Yes, you read that right; I had to look twice also.) Cut an orange in half and nail it to a tree or stake, cut side up.

Well, gotta run gang. See ya, and God Bless America and watch over our troops, police, firefighters and first responders wherever they may be serving our great country.

Local school, election and coronavirus news is more crucial now than ever. Help our newsroom deliver the coverage you deserve. Support Local news.