School Fishing Program

Sept. 2017 - We regret to announce that this program has been discontinued.

Updated Sunday January 14, 2018 by Stanley Park.



as of Sept. 2017,

the School Fishing Program has been discontinued.


Each year (until Sept. 2017) the Stanley Park Optimist Club sponsored a program (through the schools) to encourage local students to get out and experience the joys of fishing.  Initiated by Optimist member Ron Bauman, the program expanded over the years to include more schools under his guidance and leadership. Unfortunatedly, the Program depended on Ron and, with his move to Elliot Lake in Sept. 2017, he is no longer to offer his services so the Program has been discontinued. We wish Ron (and Michael and Sharon) all the best in their latest adventure!

This program received support from many sponsors including the following: the City of Cambridge Parks & Rec. Dept., Bob & Wayne Izumi, Natural Sports (Kitchener), Catch'em Bait & Tackle (Kitchener), Tall Tales Bait & Tackle, Pure Fishing, Cam Thomson, Keith Robinson's Fish Ponds, the Ontario Federation of Anglers & Hunters, the Kids & Cops Fishing Program, the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, & Bill Thompson and his fishing buddies.  We thank all these individuals & organizations - and the many others not mentioned here as well - for their help in making this program not only possible but also enjoyable for so many of our community's youth. Thanks!

Note: The fishing equipment has been donated to the local police so some local fishing programs, e.g. Kids & Cops Fishing Program, can continue. There are lots of fish just waiting to join in the fun and live-release events (such as our Grand River Bass Derby) are ones that everyone can truly enjoy. 

Past Highlights:

In 2011 the students of Mrs. Watson's class (Sheppard School, Cambridge) caught the largest fish ever in the School Fishing Program's history - a 32 1/2" carp!  Congratulations - well done!  (See the photo in the photo album under PHOTOS or slide show below.)

In 2010 Ron was back at it with classes and students from local elementary and high schools - LOTS of them.  Some of the groups are shown in the photo slide show and album with their fish.  Thanks to all the teachers and helpers for their on-site assistance and encouragement with our young fishing enthusiasts.  

(2009 saw a break in this program as Ron dealt with some health issues so he could carry on in future years.)

 On June 20 (2008), students of Lackner Woods caught a  29 1/2" carp (see photo album) and ended up with the 2nd place trophy. The biggest catch for 2008, 30" carp by students of St Daniel's School, is also in the photo album as are photos of the trophy presentations: Lackner School is featured as is one showing Mr. Donaldson with the Championship trophy won by St Daniel's (but taken at his new school, Our Lady of Lourdes, with students that he plans to guide in future fishing program).

  On June 21 (2007), students of St Daniel's school caught the biggest fish, a 31 1/2" carp and now have the trophy to prove it.  (see photo selection)


Note re: photo slide show:  Flashplayer required.  Click on photo - links to larger sized photos. Caption "on/off " is is at bottom left of photos.

by Carrie Debrone (2006) - Now, Kitchener Citizen (East Edition)

    Two students from St. Patrick’s Catholic School were presented with trophies for their catch of a 28-inch carp while fishing at the Speed River at Riverside Park in Preston in June, 2006.

    The fishing team of Daniel Brilhante and Jacob O'King made the amazing catch while participating in the 2006 Stanley Park Optimist Fishing Program - a program offered annually to schools in the Stanley Park area of Kitchener. As part of the program, students who catch the largest fish are awarded a first place trophy. “It was quite remarkable. This was the first fish either one of them had ever caught and they were really excited,” said teacher Brian Goodyear whose class participated in the program last spring. 

   Sponsored by the Federation of Anglers and Hunters, Bob Izumi’s Real Fishing Show and Natural Sports, the annual program which introduces elementary school children to the sport of fishing is sometimes combined with activities linked to school curriculum such as studies of river habitat, or offered as a special end-of-theschool-year outing. Last year, children from 14 local schools in grades 3, 4, 5 and 6 participated. Students fish with rods, barbless hooks and worms. Optimist Club member and Program Coordinator, Ron Bauman, who has been introducing young people to fishing for 16 years, presented trophies, hats and shirts to the boys on Oct. 25 at St. Patrick’s School and also gave hats to all their former class mates who were on hand to watch as boys reeled in the large fish. 

      “We hope that this program will allow kids to get out and enjoy nature and to learn about the sport of fishing. About half of every class we take out has usually never fished before,” Bauman said. “Some schools allow the students to bring their parents along and it’s just a great day out enjoying nature. We hope that maybe some of these children will go on to enjoy fishing when they become adults,” he said. 


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