The snow is fading fast. Get ready to go outside and play.
To prepare, stop by the 16th annual Kenai Peninsula Sport, Rec and Trade Show, which starts today at the Soldotna Sports Center and continues through Sunday. This year's show will feature fun for all ages.
"Last year we had over 6,000 (people)," said Stacie Coval, one of the promoters and organizers of the event.
This year, more than 120 groups will have booths inside the arena, plus additional displays outdoors.
The show is sponsored by area businesses, spearheaded by Seekins Ford, Coval said.
"They have been tremendously helpful," she said.
One highlight will be a new, improved trout pond for young anglers. Although it is for children, it is very real.
"This is stocked with trout. There will be 12 tagged fish. The tagged fish are worth prizes," Coval explained.
The grand prize is a halibut charter for the child and an adult, she said.
The new pond is 15 feet square, larger than the old one, but also lower to the ground, making it easier and safer for small fishers.
Organizers invited nonprofit groups that work with area children to operate the pool in exchange for donations from users' families. They will have people handy to help with baiting hooks and handling the catch. The participating groups are the Girl Scouts, Safe Kids, the Boys and Girls Clubs of the Kenai Peninsula, Cook Inlet Academy and Sterling Head Start.
The Alaska Department of Fish and Game supplies the trout. ACS Wireless sponsors the pond.
Another highlight is the dart simulator, Coval said.
The Kenai Peninsula chapter of Safari Club International purchased the item and put it on permanent loan to Fish and Game for use at peninsula events. When it was at the sports show two years ago, she said, it proved so popular that an estimated 2,000 people used it.
Rides on all-terrain vehicles and in a horse-drawn carriage will be available as well.
Throughout the show, informative videos will be running. The topics include Global Positioning System navigation, ATV safety, and hunting tips on calling moose and determining which bulls are legal.
Peninsula Martial Arts will do a team demonstration at 2 p.m. Sunday.
Events will include seminars:
n Bear baiting for hunters -- 6 p.m. today;
n Safe boating -- 11 a.m. Saturday and 1 p.m. Sunday;
n Cooking fish and wild game -- 2 p.m. Sunday; and
n Self-defense awareness seminar -- 2:30 p.m. Sunday.
The hours for the show are 3 to 8 p.m. today, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday. Admission is $3 for adults and $2 for senior citizens and older children. Children younger than 8 get in free.
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