Nearly 300 attend first annual special needs anglers event in Sandy Plains

Published 1:35 pm Friday, June 19, 2009

The key difference between this tournament and the pro tournaments is that everyone walks away a winner. With a pro style weigh-in, stage, scales and announcer, prizes were given as follows: first place, Whitney Murray (largest fish); second place, Levi White (most fish); and third place, Steve Camp (smallest fish).

Community efforts pooled together to make this the first of hopefully many memorable events. The Green Creek Volunteer Fire Department was on-site with fire trucks and concessions, safety and site managers Rodney and Angela Justus, Foothills Mercantile, supplied fishing poles and tackle for our special need anglers.

Merchants from the community donated prizes for the raffle and about 200 volunteers from the community pulled together to ensure each angler had the best and safest experience possible.

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In addition, a separate tournament was conducted for any and all (ages 12 and under Big Fish): first Dylan Gibbs; second Mitchell Brown; and third Luke Darling. The family event even included entertainment from Amy Toney and Band.

Fling-N-A-Prayer has many upcoming events in store,

thanks to the Polk County Community Foundation and private donations. Plans include a tournament this fall (place and date to be announced).

Organizers urge the foothills community to &dquo;catch the fever&dquo; and help take a special needs person fishing. Organizers say, &dquo;the experience is life changing; now is our time to give back for the many blessings we have.&dquo;

Fling-N-A-Prayer says its mission is to utilize a sport fishing and boating program and Special Need Anglers&squo; Fishing Events&squo; to introduce and help both children and adults who have physical challenges and special needs.

The &squo;&squo;Special Need Anglers&squo;&squo; team says it believes by educating, encouraging and helping the anglers compete, they can &dquo;empower, inspire and give them confidence to live a more empowering life.&dquo;

To learn more about the organization and to see photos of recent events, visit

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