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GRLC First Annual Youth Fishing Derby

Updated: Feb 4, 2023

Blog post written by Karlee Holmes, GRLC Board Member

The sun was shining and the weather couldn't have been any better for the GRLC first annual youth fishing derby held at Glade Run Lake on April 10, 2021.

Kids 12 and under were invited from near and far to participate in the "virtual" fishing derby. Given the circumstances of the pandemic, the derby was conducted with cell phones using an app called FishDonkey. The app allowed for participants to register, read rules and regulations, and enter their fish, all by taking photos using their phone! One photo was taken of the child with the fish along the measuring board to verify length. The app's algorithm took care of the rest, allowing for a virtual leaderboard to be live during the derby running from dawn to dusk.

A total of 33 participants from Armstrong, Allegheny, Butler, Mercer, Westmoreland, and Washington counties joined in on the fishing fun. Thanks to securing a sponsorship from Armstrong Cable, the GRLC was able to provide four prizes in each age category, making eight total prizes available.

Photo of Ellie P. with her dad.

The categories were split into ages 7 and under and ages 8-12 to level out the competition. Both categories had prizes for a grand slam of the longest bass, trout, and panfish combo, the longest trout, the longest sunfish, and the longest stringer of three sunfish.


Logan S. with one of the sunfish he caught.

Photo taken at the lake during the morning of the fishing derby.

People were fishing from the shore, off the jetty, by the dam, and even off of the hiking trail across from the boat launch. In addition to fishing, people utilized the lake by hiking, paddling, dog walking, and even throwing a 10th birthday get-together. It was great to see people recreating outdoors on one of the first warm days of spring. Throughout the day, Curbside Coffee Company and Revival Chili were serving up coffee, pastries, chili, hot dogs, and more.

The day was one for the books - the Glade Run Lake Conservancy history book, that is! Our first derby worked out well in the virtual format since it was an official Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission approved catch-photo-release derby. We accomplished what we hoped to do:

  • Teach kids about conservation

  • Get people together in a safe manner

  • Share our gem of a lake with the next generation of outdoor enthusiasts

Jasper H. with one of the sunfish he caught.

*Official GRLC 10-year anniversary merchandise is currently available for sale to anyone wishing to show their appreciation of Glade Run Lake. Visit to browse available products. All purchases benefit the work of the GRLC.


About the Author

Karlee joined the Glade Run Lake Conservancy in 2020 and is active in hosting a variety of fundraising and community-based activities.

Karlee earned a B.S. in Biological Sciences from the University of Pittsburgh and an M.S. in Environmental Science and Management from Duquesne University.

In her spare time, Karlee enjoys birding, taking photos, fishing, kayaking, and traveling. One of her favorite things to do is spend date night kayaking with her husband, Josh, at Glade Run Lake.

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