Escondido, CA

Kiwanis Trout Derby coming in April

The Hidden Valley Kiwanis Club of Escondido will hold its annual major fund raiser . . . the 21st annual Dixon Lake Trout Derby Saturday and Sunday, April 21 and 22 with the times from 6 a.m.–-6 p.m. on Saturday and 6 a.m.–4 p.m. on Sunday.

There will be tons of photo ops of tykes at the Kiddie Pond, many of who will catch their first fish ever.  The pond is for children ages 7 and under and will be open from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. both days.

It will be a day of great fishing, fun, food and people!

There will be fishing prizes for Adults & Juniors by Turner Outdoors. The lake will be newly stocked with 4,500 pounds of Rainbow Trout.  There will be 15 tagged fish. Anglers who catch the tagged fish are guaranteed a $25 prize. There will also be an opportunity prize drawing.

Permit prices for the derby will be $14 for adults and $10 for youth and seniors.  Anglers under 8 do not require a permit.  California State fishing licenses are not required at Dixon Lake.  There is a $5.00 entry fee for vehicles entering the park on weekends and holidays, including derby days.  Guests 60 or better are free.

In addition, the Kiwanis are sponsoring a “Kiddie pond” again this year, with about 300 pounds of bluegill.  The Kiddie pond will be adjacent to Pier 2, and will be staffed by volunteers from the Senior Anglers of Escondido. The Kiddie pond is free—with poles and bait provided by Senior Anglers.  No adults will be allowed to fish in the Kiddie pond.

A Kona ice vendor will be serving both days and there will be a pancake breakfast 9 a.m.–11 a.m. each day for $5. The price is the same for barbecue hamburgers and hotdogs served up noon-3 p.m. each day.

There will be prizes for adults and juniors, with additional prizes for anglers that bring in any of the 15 tagged fish.

Lake Dixon is located at 1700 La Honda Dr., Escondido.

How the Trout Derby began

The Trout Derby was the brainchild of “The Paper’s” legendary publisher, Lyle Davis, who is also a longtime member of the Hidden Valley Kiwanis Club. Each Kiwanis club has the responsibility of raising funds under their Foundation guidelines to support local community projects and global needs as derived by Kiwanis International.

At one time Davis was the proprietor of the Snack bar and Boat Rentals at Lake Dixon.  He recommended the club host a “Trout Derby” at the lake.

As Davis relayed to The Times-Advocate: “I discussed it with Nick Ponce, retired Sergeant from Escondido Police Department.  He asked me if it was something we could do, and I told him we could make it happen. We then proposed it to the club and they adopted the premise immediately.”

The event has grown a little each year. About ten years ago the club was looking for ways to involve the entire family, so after discussions with the Senior Anglers of North County, they introduced a “Kiddie Pond.”

Kiwanis Club members obtained the materials, constructed two 10ft x 20ft x 6ft netted ponds in which (the Club) paid to stock with young trout specifically for all Children under 8 years (no permit required).  This was received so well by the Lake Rangers and the participants they added a second event during the City’s Trout Derby the Fall of each year and referred to it as the Children’s Fishing Experience.

All funds are passed through the Kiwanis Foundation – a 501(C)3 foundation.  About 90% of the funds received for this effort are channeled back into the community.

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