Future anglers

I always felt like the luckiest man alive. I am sure many of you feel the same way when you sit down with you family and look around dinner table. I have no grandiose plans to be a fishing celebrity or dreams of having a fishing show. In fact, when presented with an opportunity to appear in one, I run the other way. Fast. Some of us are born with a face for a radio as they say…and I am cool with that.

This sport of surfcasting is my passion and it has been great to me in so many ways. I have few friends outside the sport but the benefit was I got to meet so many wonderful people over the years. Given a chance to promote the sport I love, I took it with both hands and ran with it. That is why we are here, why the magazine is here, why the blog is here.

There is no “light on the end of the tunnel”, in terms of doing this full time. I don’t see it, maybe someone else with bigger ambitions might. I see myself toiling on the construction site for many years, and then coming home and typing with this one finger of mine. If you thought this sport was a speck in the realm of “fishing industry” , you are right. You just don’t know how small…

But we are running on passion, not possibility of future IPO or buyout, although if you are interested, we sure will listen….lol. That is why we are going to keep promoting this sport every hour of every day that we are around. Just like you, we are lifers.

Last few months I had this idea rattling in my head. And since is closely correlated with Angelo Peluso’s guest blog yesterday, I figured it might be the time to share it with you. I haven’t really ever discussed this with anyone, other than my wife and as usual I am long on passion and short on time…

I want to do something that will promote the sport to our younger generation. I don’t need to tell you what kids are into today, video games, Facebook and on and on. Outdoors is not on their minds. And yes, I understand that is up to the parents to expose them to the wonders of outdoors, fishing included. Some of you might disagree with me but I don’t feel surfcasting is a great sport for young kids. Why? Because I get skunked most of the time and I always felt that kids need action to keep their interests up. And although I see plenty of young ones fluking with their fathers on the boats, you rarely going to run into a young child in the surf. And this makes sense. My kids prefer boats too.

But kids get to the age where they are ready for a bigger challenges, where they accompany the fathers (or mothers) and get onto the insanity of a Montauk blitz or a good sand eel bite. And they become hooked for life…

My idea, and it’s just an idea at this point, is to start some kind of a scholarship for these anglers. Either trough SJ or on my own. This sport has been nothing but if not great to me and I’d like to give back a little more. But I don’t know anything about funding, distribution, whatever might be involved. If anyone has any suggestions, feel free to post it here or if you are not comfortable with that, you can email me at zhromin@verizon.net. Like I said, it’s just an idea at this point…hopefully some of you will have some good suggestions

13 comments on “Future anglers

  1. cow tamer

    In RI, RISAA sponsors a “take a kid fishing day”, where members take kids, who would otherwise not get the chance, an opportunity to fish on a boat in the bay for half a day of fishing.

  2. Zeno Post author

    there are a lot of organizations that take kids fishing…I think Fisherman has a Send A Kid fishing program that I supported for a long time. I am thinking more of a scholarship or grants to deserving budding surfcasters…either for writing an essays or rewarding their involvement in fisheries, local organizations

  3. Joe F

    Hey Zeno, I think that is a wonderful idea. As a 22-year-old surfcaster, I constantly feel like my demographic (<25) is the least represented in the sport. Gaining market share of the younglings should be a top priority to help preserve this pastime. If there is anything I could possibly help you with please let me know.

  4. mark downey

    Joe F, I was thinking about what you said and your right.At your age I had left the surf for things that were not all positive. Good for you for being in the surf. It is better then most places. If the rod bends then so much the better.

  5. Karl

    Don’t know much about building scholarship programs but would be happy to help as you get more info from others and willing to donate to the program as well. I think it would fun and beneficial to the young up and comers to get a financial benefit towards college for being involved in improving the shoreline fishery for the benefit of surfcasters either by organizing a significant campaign to our legislators or somehow developing more public awareness or a school program to promote keeping stripers healthy for many years to come

  6. Keith

    I take my daughter(12yr) to local pond for panfish and what not. As the calender permits for Surfcasting we go to local “KIDS” days provided by local fishing clubs in NJ.

    These Are 2 that I know of annually in Sept and Oct.

    NJ Beach Buggy Association

    Seaside Heights Fishing Club

    My daughter has fun at these days. I think it good for them to see other kids doing it too. Maybe go out fluking on a boat this year.

  7. chuckg

    Talk to Steve Medeiros at RISAA we have a scholarship program that grants funding to high school seniors pursuing a marine sciences/oceanographic curriculum…

  8. Rob

    very thoughtfull of you z, awesome! Talk to your bank/Accountant for ways to go about it? also reach out to Libba they have a scholarship and could help w/the basics on running it? a donation tag on your web page could start generating funds after you get things going. Rob

  9. Brian K

    ur idea is a wonderful step in keeping young people involved in outdoor angling sports that we all love and enjoy.
    Totally agree that if we do not try to get younger people involved, the entire fishing community BOTH surf and boat will be a thing of the past. Take a look at hunting over the last 10-15 years. A decrease in youth participating (across the country)in fishing, hunting or other outdoor activities will lead to access restrictions, limmiting public to parks, beaches, lands and other access to areas that are now open to all.
    I to am working on promoting fishing as an alternate activity (besides video games) for both young people AND families to do together. One way to really get youths involved is to contact local school districts and their science or administrations to ask to possibly attend the school and give a brief talk about fishing, conservation, the ocean, surf and ecosystem that is
    so important to ballance the environment. Another thing would be to have a Saturday dedictated to students explaining about fishing, habitat for fish, beach errosion and other things will effect the future. Maybe a long casting competion for them on the ballfield. Kids need to be competative.
    Have a bunch of other ideas to promote the angling sports I will be implementing this year with my club.

    As for scholarships and grants, you need to have a successful program in place for most companies or sponsors to take you seriously before they will be willing to fund scholarship or grants. Once you show them that young people are interested in and participating in your program it will be a lot easier to request them to support or back you.

    Good luck and keep up the good work.

    Brian K

  10. Mac H.

    I think your heart is leading you in the right direction, I;ve noticed that the consistent attribute throughout fishermen is passion. The lasting effects from fishing can be felt for years throughout a kids life, if taught correctly. But that is the major problem. Growing up fishing with a local friend, the greatest feeling from fishing wasn’t catching but pursuing. Fisheries stocks are in decline, preserving what is left is where people need to start. In this day and age, more kids are turning to the outdoors then people account for. Insecurities from social networks are leaving kids trying to find an escape. But how will they escape if nothing is left?

  11. Mike Milillo

    Z if you do figure something out let me know i would love to help when i can. The only problem is that’s schools kicking my butt and not giving me enough time to fish. its sad to not see any people my age fishing (19). the only bright side is that the surf will be less crowded and im not gonna get mugged as much lol.


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