The beauty of Colorado’s changing seasons also marks Environmental Learning for Kids’ transition to fall programing. In early Autumn of 2021, Environmental Learning for Kids (ELK) returned to our programming roots with family fishing days at Lake Lehow, near Waterton Canyon. Over three days in September and October, ELK took over 200 people fishing! Many of the participants were long-term ELK families but they also included new families and returning ELK alumni.
Enjoying time and recreating outdoors often fills us with renewed energy and joy, especially when the time is spent with family. ELK parent, Blanca Deolarte said, “The warmhearted ELK family nourished my daughter and me with an exceptional fishing experience that allowed us to feel connected, accomplished, re-energized, and cheerful. Eight rainbow trout, two bluegills, and a twenty-pound catfish were part of our happiness!”
Cast-a-Line kicked off the fall fishing season on September 18th. The event gave the ELK family the chance to celebrate the start of a new school year and an ELKsters birthday! Fishing events on October 9th and 23rd gave even more families, both new and returning, the chance to experience the joys of fishing. Each fishing clinic started with breakfast and casting lessons in the morning. Families and students fished all day with lunch at noon.
“The warmhearted ELK family nourished my daughter and me with an exceptional fishing experience that allowed us to feel connected, accomplished, re-energized, and cheerful. Eight rainbow trout, two bluegills, and a twenty-pound catfish were part of our happiness!”
Experienced and novice anglers alike were assisted and educated by ELK’s high school and college staff of Urban Rangers. Elder Ron Taylor, a Montbello community member and supporter of ELK, recalls how “One of the young boys caught his first fish was so excited! First of all; his mom said he couldn’t sleep the night before! Then to learn how to attach a hook, then cast the line in the lake and get the feel of catching his first fish!! Oh; what a great time we all had !!”
The success of this year’s fishing events is thanks to the incredible community partners Environmental Learning for Kids has including Families Against Violent Acts (FAVA) and King Me.
If you missed fishing with us this year, please sign up for our newsletter or learn more by going to our website (elkkkids.org) and clicking through the program section. I hope you can join us on our next program!
About Environmental Learning for Kids (ELK): Environmental Learning for Kids (ELK) is a Denver-based, nonprofit organization established in 1996 to address the growing need to introduce and educate Colorado’s racially diverse youth about science, leadership, and careers. Twenty-five years later, ELK continues to provide strong educational support, good role models, and opportunities for positive community action for youth, helping them to become engaged, productive, and successful members of society. Learn more at elkkkids.org.
About the Author: Born in Denver, Sam Gilmore is a Montbello resident and ELK alumni. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in History with minors in Environmental Science and Leadership Studies from the University of Denver. Since 2016, Sam has worked for Environmental Learning for Kids in the Urban Ranger program helping connect youth and families to nature and outdoor recreation. She currently holds the position of ELK’s Education Coordinator for Denver Youth Naturally (DYN) and Learning Environmental Activitys for Families (LEAF) programming. Sam is an avid reader, hiker, angler, and houseplant enthusiast. Contact Sam at firstname.lastname@example.org.