Sun drenched the pond and environs at the Bridgewater recreation center May 11 and residents young and less young alike responded to the call.

More than 50 children and their parents turned out that day along Sarah Sanford Road to enjoy for some friendly angling competition.

When the fishing had ended, prizes were awarded in several categories and hot dogs and other refreshments were served at the pavilion.

Michel Dubos, of Bridgewater, donated the prizes and the hot dogs, and was the "driving force" behind bringing a fishing derby back to Bridgewater, according to Catherine Vikstrom, of Bridgewater Recreation.

"It's all about the kids," said Dubos. "Get a kid to catch one fish, and he's hooked for life. It's so important to get the kids outside."

Freddy Basli, a third-grader at Burnham School in Bridgewater, caught 23 fish to earn the "Most Fish Caught" prize.

The "Biggest Fish" was an 18" bullhead caught by Carter Herrington, a second-grader at Burnham.

Bridgewater resident Leo Null oversaw the measurements and announced the prize winners, while Julie Iannucci and her dad, Don Iannucci, were among those directing the food operation.

Bridgewater had been the home of a fishing derby in past years, previously sponsored by the now disbanded Bridgewater Rod and Gun Club, of which Mr. Dubos had been a member.

The event was hosted by the Bridgewater Recreation Commission and supported by donations and on-site assistance from the Laurel Bank Fishing Club, Bridgewater Village Store, Union Savings Bank, the Valley Angler, North Atlantic Sportsman, Inc., and Bridgewater Varsity Scout Troop 88.

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