The City of Delaware Police Department is current accepting signups for the inaugural Fish with a Cop event, which will take place in July.
Delaware Police Officer and School Resource Officer John Hartman said Tuesday that the idea was a collaborative effort between himself and Dave Fields, a police assistant.
“We’ve always had a love of fishing and talk about it a lot,” Hartman said. He added they wanted to do the event last year, but it just didn’t work out.
Hartman said from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. on July 7, officers from the police department and the Ohio Department of Natural Resources will be at Blue Limestone Park to fish with the community.
The event is free, and Hartman said children ages 6 to 13 will get their own reel and rod at the event, thanks to a grant the police department is working on.
“I’m excited to get kids out of the living room and put a fishing pole in their hands instead of a joystick,” Hartman said. “Have some fun and enjoy the outdoors. It’s something I preach a lot at Dempsey — getting off technology.”
The first two hours of the event will be a “Passport to Fishing” put on by ODNR, which is a simple introduction to fishing and water safety.
After the course, the event will consist of a fishing derby, Hartman said. He added there will be prizes for the biggest fish caught and the most fish caught, among other things.
Hartman added for the police department, it’s a chance to interact with the community in a casual setting.
“I’m hoping people get a chance to get out and do something different with police officers in a relaxed atmosphere,” he said.
Brennan Helcher, who will be a freshman at Hayes when the 2018-2019 school year rolls around in August, said he talks to Hartman about fishing all the time and fishes in his spare time.
“I was excited when I heard about (the event),” Helcher said. “Fishing is fun but relaxing. You sit in the shade and talk to your friends, but it’s competitive.”
Hartman said because this is the first time for the event, registration is capped at 100.
Residents can register for the event by contacting Hartman at 740-203-1133 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.