Youth Education Report

by Greg Kucharewski

(from Jersey Coast Anglers Association March 2003 Newsletter)


Several weeks ago Jim Hutchinson, Assistant Editor of The Fisherman Magazine, contacted the JCAA Youth Education Committee about providing a “Water Works Wonders”, “Hooked On Fishing Not On Drugs”, Learn to Fish seminar for Troop 36.  We thank Jim for calling the JCAA Youth Education Committee and allowing us the opportunity to meet thirty-two Toms River Boy Scouts from Troop 36 and teach them the basics of saltwater/freshwater fishing.

The Learn to Fish seminar taught Scouts about saltwater/freshwater fishing and local fishing opportunities in the Toms River area.  All the Scouts were eager to learn how to tie fishing knots, casting techniques, fish anatomy, and tackle tricks to increase their chance of catching a trophy fish.  Joe Sanzaro, Troop 36 Scout Director and troop parents did a great job of preparing the young men for fishing and I am sure all the Scouts are working towards achieving a fish merit badge.  Bob Daly coordinated a wide assortment of fishing tackle as well as rod and reels from the following manufacturers: Eagle Claw, Mustad, Lunker City, Power Pro, Ande Line, Bill Lewis Rattle-Traps, Stren and Mercado Fishing Poles.  Betty and Nick’s Bait & Tackle, Seaside Park supplied the grand prize rod & reel for the pitch cast competition.  Collecting prizes and preparing for an event is always a difficult job and Bob deserves kudos for his dedication in supplying a wide assortment of tackle for the troop. I was told Bob worked on the project for a year….Great job! 

The JCAA Youth Education Committee supplied Water Works Wonders, HOFNOD materials, and tackle boxes with terminal tackle to support the event.  During the Learn to Fish seminar, Joe Gawlik, Troop Photographer, did a great job of capturing many digital images of the event. We thank Joe for sending the JCAA Youth Education Committee a CD of images that we will post on the JCAA Website.





Dr. Eleanor Bochenek, Rutgers Haskin Shellfish Research Laboratory, is working on an EPA Environmental Education Grant and the JCAA Youth Education Committee will support the project and provide materials for her proposed project.  It is entitled, Pilot Implementation of Watershed Education/Urban Fishing Program and if the grant is approved it will be presented at two locations in New Jersey.



The following letter was sent in support of bill S1778:

Dear Legislator,

The JCAA membership wants you to notify Governor McGreevey that you support Bill S1778/A2823 utilizing monies not from tax dollars but rather from a fund paid into by drug offenders.

On September 12th Senator Leonard Connors introduced a most important piece of legislation concerning the Hooked On Fishing - Not On Drugs program.  S-1778 would establish within the Division of Fish and Wildlife the HOF-NOD coordinator position and would fund the program with $200,000.  The funds would come from the Drug Enforcement and Demand Reduction Fund.  All the monies in that fund are from people arrested for drug offenses.  In this way, money gathered from people who use drugs is being put back into the communities to help prevent drug use.  We are asking for your support for S-1778.

The money in the fund can only be used for anti-drug/alcohol programs and to support Bill S1778/A2823.  We received the most recent information from state FOIA records and currently there is 5 million dollars in the fund and only slightly over one million is slated for use this year.  Please make your plea to Governor McGreevey and ask him to support this worthwhile bill that is sure to make a difference to the youth of New Jersey that will participate in the “Hooked On Fishing Not On Drugs” outdoor program.

Senate No. 1778 is sponsored by Senator Leonard T. Connors Jr., 9tth district andAssembly, No. 2823 is sponsored by Assemblymen Christopher J. Connors, Jeffrey W. Moran and Robert J. Smith.


Thank you for your consideration,

Greg Kucharewski, JCAA

Youth Education Director


The JCAA Youth Education Committee will visit the Newark Bait and Flycasting Club 7:30 p.m., Monday, March 4, 2003 and present a “Hooked On Fishing Not On Drugs” event for youngsters attending their Kids Fishing Night.  The Newark Bait and Flycasting Club host the event at the Knights of Columbus Hall, located in Union, NJ.  Children and their families are welcome to come and enjoy a night of fun fishing activities and refreshments.  This is one fishing club that is committed to teaching the joys of fishing to our young people. The Jersey Coast Anglers Association’s Youth Education Committee will support this worthwhile event by conducting a safe boating seminar and providing  “Hooked On Fishing Not On Drugs” packets for all the youngsters.