Youth Outdoors hosts third annual 'Kids Fishing Rodeo'

Youth Outdoors hosts third annual 'Kids Fishing Rodeo'
Posted at 3:44 PM, Sep 03, 2022

GALLATIN, Tenn. (WTVF) — Saturday morning marked a beautiful day to spend outside. Youth Outdoors hosted its third annual "Kids Fishing Rodeo" for families at Gallatin Pay Lake.

It was the first time fishing for many — including some parents.

Children were gifted free fishing poles to enjoy a day of fishing with their families. Each child also received a backpack full of school supplies and enjoyed treats and raffle prizes like bicycles.

"I think the first year we had 40 kids, the first year, and every year it just gets bigger and bigger and bigger," said Youth Outdoors founder, Jeff Franklin. He founded the program three years ago.

"I had three kids out here the first year — [it was] the first fishing pole they ever had in their life," Franklin said.

By putting fishing poles in hands, Franklin hopes it'll keep other things away.

"If I can keep five of them kids off the streets, away from drugs, I did my job for the year," said Franklin.

"If you can teach a kid to fish, you can keep him out of trouble a lot of times," added the owner of Gallatin Pay Lake, George Hinkle.

But there are some valuable life lessons to be learned at the lake.

"Be patient," said young Wyatt Falk. It was his first time fishing. "So, like, if they cast it, to be patient and wait."

Franklin said he's already planning next year's event and hopes to create another event for children to learn about hunting.