Staten Island: 86th Huck Finn Fishing Tournament lures 60 kids

Fitzgerald Cecilio – 4E Sports Reporter

New York, NY, United States (4E Sports) – Around 60 kids between 5 to 14 years old participated in the Andrew E. Zimmer Club’s 86th annual Huck Finn Fishing Tournament Friday

Despite the threat of rain, the youngsters from across Staten Island and as far away as Westchester, came to the annual tradition, looking to reel in some fish and dress in costume.

“This is the 86th year, and people always come,” Joe DiGrazia, the oldest member of the club, told SIlive.com. “They love this contest. One person even came from New Jersey today.”

All those who registered for the tournament were given a bamboo fishing pole and bait while those who took part in the costume contest were encouraged to be creative in honor of Mark Twain’s “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn”.

The first fish were caught by John Liu, 10, and Nicole Davis, 12, said John Donohue, the club’s event coordinator.

Bob Nebel of Huguenot has been going to the tournament since he was 7 years old.

“My grandfather was a member of the club, and I became a member and volunteer,” he said.

Now, it’s a family affair that includes his son, 10-year-old Nicholas.

“It’s a fun contest, and I get to have fun with my family,” he said, adding that he looks forward to it every year.

The Zimmer Club, in addition to hosting the free competitions, also provides youth conservation programs and offers classes for aspiring sportsmen.

The program follows the example of Andrew E. Zimmer, a sheriff, conservationist and environmentalist who founded the club almost 90 years go.

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