Alabama students with special needs enjoyed the thrill of fishing at the annual Exceptional Anglers event, “Gone Fishin’ Not Just Wishin’” at Oak Mountain State Park.
Members of the Alabama Power Service Organization were among the scores of volunteers who supported this year’s three-day event May 11-13, which was blessed with ideal spring weather.
The event teaches basic fishing skills to special needs students from Alabaster and Pelham city schools and the Shelby and Jefferson county school systems. In addition to dipping their poles, students can participate in art projects, perform with local musicians, listen to storytellers and learn about water safety, including the proper use of life jackets.
“Community fishing events like this serve many of Alabama’s children, seniors and participants with special needs,” said Chris Blankenship, Commissioner of the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (ADCNR). “Without the hard work of our volunteers and the support of the sponsors, this event would not be possible. We are very grateful for their help in enriching the lives of these students.”
Among those supporting the event are ADCNR’s Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries, Alabama Power, Spire Energy, Airport Marine, Alabaster City Schools, Bud’s Best Cookies, Buffalo Rock, the city of Pelham, Consolidated Pipe and Supply, Golden Flake, Hadaway’s Good Little Farm, HMP, the Humber family, Jefferson County Adapted Physical Education, Jefferson County Board of Education and Transportation, Oak Mountain State Park, Pelham City Schools, Pelham police and fire departments, the Shelby County Commission, Shelby County Schools, and Tyson Foods.
The Alabama Power Service Organization (APSO) is made up of Alabama Power and Southern Company employees in Alabama and their families. Every year, APSO members contribute thousands of hours of their own time, as well as their personal resources, to support nonprofits and community organizations and events across the state. Learn more about the organization here.
For more information about Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries’ community fishing program, visit www.outdooralabama.com.