Monongahela Aquatorium Kids Fishing Derby 2019

Saturday, 6/8, was a pleasantly mild morning in Monongahela. Thankfully, the Mon River was at normal flow & clarity because the Kids Fishing Derby, co-sponsored by the City of Monongahela & the Valley Inn Sportsmen’s Association, was on today. According to the folks at the registration desk this was perhaps the 14th year and a great deal of credit was given to Bob Kepics, the current Mayor of Monongahela. Bob has served as Mayor since January 6, 2007 and was named as instrumental in the founding of this event in both of his roles as Mayor and member of the Valley Inn Sportsmen’s Association. Thank you for your service to the community Bob.

 The event was scheduled to run from 8AM to 2PM. When Frodo & I arrived about 10:30AM, 74 children had been registered with 2 signing in just as we stood there. The desk expected that families would continue to sign in during the morning. Including the accompanying adults, I estimated there were 150-200 strung out along the Aquatorium & neighboring river banks.

Nice crowd for such an event and the reach went outside Monongahela. Talked with organizers from Cub Scout Pack 99 from Elizabeth Twp., who had 17 families signed up.

 About 30+ sponsors had donated to support this event, allowing the Valley Inn Sportsmen to line up an array of prizes which included dozens of rod/reel sets, tackle, tackle boxes, coolers, etc. Prizes would be awarded both by lottery, according to the registration ticket number, and according to largest fish in each age category. Every child had a chance to go home with something.

 Biggest fish registered by that time were a 24″ Carp & a 25″ Catfish. Fun fish to catch for any age group and neither fish species gives up easily.

The catch also included smaller Bass, Rock Bass, and other panfish. The catch of a basically healthy river although there are still challenges in keeping & improving that water quality. 

 Walking around talking to folks it was hard to decide who was having more fun, the families there or our Standard Poodle Frodo. He’s a very sociable dog & feeds off the energy of the crowd like a happy vampire. By the time we got down to the river bank he was practically vibrating & hovering about 3 ft off the ground. Boy, if you could bottle that & take a little sip when you were feeling down!

 Again, a very nice community family event, and thanks to all the organizations & individuals who put in the effort to make it a success.

 See you next time.
Ken Yonek

Fishing on the Mon

It was great opening day on Pigeon Creek.

What opening day?

Of trout season.

On Pigeon Creek in Monongahela?


Pigeon Creek hadn’t been stocked with trout by the State of Pennsylvania, or anyone else, for years. But, on April 9, the Valley Inn Sportsmen Association , and their business community sponsors, stocked trout, up to 20′ in length, in Pigeon Creek from Peno’s Plaza along Rt 481 to the I 43 bridge on Bentleyville Rd. I hadn’t been able to attend the stocking but I figured that if I drove along Park Ave. it wouldn’t be hard to tell where the fish ( & anglers ) were. Sure enough, every place where there was parking & access from the road, there were clusters of cars & anglers. Talked to several. They ranged from the angler who reported he & his family caught, released & lost several Rainbow Trout (and the baits he was using) to the fellow who said he caught two but didn’t know that much about fish & couldn’t say what kind they were. But they were all having fun. It was a sunny, mild, day in the low 70’s at 10 AM on a Saturday morning & they were out there with their families & friends. Catching fish, or not. Almost didn’t matter. They were doing something they enjoyed with people they cared about.

Thanks to the Valley Inn Sportsmen Association for giving them that opportunity.