The Fulton Parks and Recreation department stocked Veterans Park Lake with plenty of bluegill hybrids and catfish Friday night, and by Saturday morning they were biting in full force for the eighth annual Capt. Alan Leake Memorial Kids Fishing Tournament.
Children and their families lined the lake 10 a.m. to noon, and the park was filled with excitement as kids rushed to weigh stations around the lake to find out how big of a lunker they'd landed and laughter as they splashed back into the water after release. Children competed for prize packages including a trophy, pole and cooler to see who could catch the most fish or the biggest prize.
Retired Auxvasse firefighter Bob Mischnick started the contest in memory of his good friend, Fulton Fire Department Capt. Alan Leake, who was fatally injured while working a motor vehicle accident in 2006 just one year before retirement.
"Alan loved kids and fishing, so I was trying to find a way to keep his memory alive," Mischnick said as he grilled hot dogs lakeside for participants. "Alan and I were friends for 26 years at the time of his death, he was like a little brother to me. I have a seven-acre lake and we spent countless hours out there. Alan loved to fish."