The climate of late at the hatchery has been nothing short of a whirlwind of activities. While we always have fish production and facility projects going on year-round, this is our big outreach season, and it’s almost over.

The climate of late at the hatchery has been nothing short of a whirlwind of activities. While we always have fish production and facility projects going on year-round, this is our big outreach season, and it’s almost over.
Two weeks ago, we again hosted the hundreds that came out to enjoy our annual Kids Fishing Derby – always held on the first Friday of June. Over four hundred kids signed up and participated in the event where they can catch and keep up to four rainbow trout. For quite a few, this was the first time they had been fishing in their lives.
We hope to “hook” them on this worthwhile pastime with events such as this. We were so thankful that the rain didn’t scare off too many from this time of family fun.
One week later, last Friday, we hosted our Fishing Day for Seniors and Individuals with Disabilities, and had over 260 register (our biggest turnout yet!) and partake in that enjoyable affair. Our oldest angler was 95 years young – and regardless of age, it was great to see everyone casting, catching and smiling for this three-hour fishing experience. The weather was ideal and most stayed to eat the free hotdog lunch provided by our Friends group. While most that registered were from good old Missouri, fifteen percent of the participants came from our neighboring three states.
This coming Saturday is our last outreach hurrah as we will host the fourth annual Neosho MusicFest to raise funds for wounded military folk. Organized by Walgreens manager Kevin Foote, this all-day event (12-7) will be filled with numerous talented bands playing for our entertainment, interspersed with announcements and ceremony. In the previous years, the afternoon has seen hundreds of folks come and go from our grounds for a great day’s enjoyment.
This is a wonderful community affair that we love to host each year. With everyone’s help and support, thousands of dollars could be raised to benefit veterans that need help.
We are also helping Urban American Outdoors with their 11th Annual Urban Kids Fishing Derby in Kansas City MO. Last year, the hatchery provided some fish for the event, as well as equipment and manpower with Friends members and staff. Because of the amazingly positive results from last year, we are going again, and hope to see a couple hundred smiling youth as they venture outside and go fishing – sometimes for the very first time.
For those that know hatchery manager David Hendrix, you know that these big outdoor events really are an expression of his heart to bless others.
We are all thankful for the community’s support of this facility, and together we aim to be a blessing for everyone. Thanks for all you do, and when the time comes around again next year, we’ll be ready to serve up another round of aquatic blessing to give right back again.



Bruce Hallman, Environmental Education Specialist, Neosho National Fish Hatchery