Major League Fishing anglers visit Good Hope Primary

Major League Fishing angler Ott DeFoe reads to Good Hope Primary students as Marty Robinson, Kelly Jordon and Wesley Strader wait their turns.  (Photo courtesy Tonya Cupp)

GOOD HOPE, Ala. – On Friday afternoon, Major League Fishing (MLF) anglers in town for MLF Bass Pro Tour Stage Five on Smith Lake dropped by Good Hope Primary School to visit the students, sign autographs and read “fishy” stories to the kids from books like “The Pout Pout Fish” series.  Kelly Jordon, Wesley Strader, Marty Robinson and Ott DeFoe met with classes in the library to read, talk about fishing, and answer questions like “How many states have you been to?” and the popular and often-repeated “How do you catch so much fish?”

Jordon told The Tribune, “It’s a unique opportunity to interact with the community, communities all across America.  We all enjoy the outdoors. We’re a guest of the community that we go to, and it’s just a small way of giving back a little bit.

“It’s very enjoyable for us.  We get to hang out with kids, see the future generations, try to get them a little more involved in the sport of fishing and being outside, just trying to tell them what we do.  It’s almost like a semi-career day, I guess you’d say, and it’s fun! Everybody wins!

“It’s just, for a guy like me, it’s a blessing to be able to do something like this, and see all these kids.  I have kids of my own the same age, so it’s really cool. Kind of makes you miss home. It’s just awesome how the communities welcome us with open arms, too.  Like I said, it’s a great thing, and we’re fortunate and blessed to have cities like Cullman have us as guests in their town, and share their lake and their local area with us.”

Good Hope Primary Principal Tonya Cupp shared, “This is such a win for our students and a win for our community, to have these anglers.  Our students see them driving by; they say they’re in the ‘big monster trucks’ and the ‘big boats with the fancy writing.’

“Our students are familiar with Smith Lake.  We love Smith Lake, and a lot of them and their families are actually following this.  It’s just an honor to have these anglers take time out of their busy schedules to come and read to our kids, and show them their love of reading and to interact with our students.  It meant the world to me, and to our students and faculty, and our community.”

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W.C. Mann