Letter of Thanks: From Kingman Elks Lodge

On June 4, Kingman Elks Lodge No. 468, Yellow Pine Ranch, Mohave Sportsman Club and Arizona Game and Fish partnered together to conduct the third annual "Fishing for Smiles" kids fishing day at Yellow Pine Ranch just east of Kingman. Event coordinators, sponsors and partners believe this was our most successful event yet, even though the fish weren't biting like we had hoped.

To pull off an event like this is no small undertaking and we count on many contributors, sponsors and supporters for our annual event to be successful each year.

To start with, we need a great location with a beautiful lake and the perfect surroundings for a true outdoor fishing day for 200 kids and their families. For that we have the owners of Yellow Pine Ranch to thank. Their generosity is very much appreciated and we hope they enjoyed the day as much as we did. Your enthusiasm and hospitality are always a gift.

To the volunteers who worked so hard planning and scheduling this event, and to the more than 30 volunteers who spent hours and hours gathering equipment, materials and supplies, delivering it all to the lake then setting up and preparing for the kids to arrive to fish, we thank you. To all who spent the day checking kids in and out, cooking, cleaning, serving lunch, baiting hooks, unhooking fish, untangling lines, weighing and cleaning fish, running the various activities and any number of other volunteer duties which made our fishing day so special, we appreciate all you did. We believe the volunteers had as much fun as the participants!

To the following businesses, it's because of your commitment to the kids in this community that our event continues to be so successful and we sincerely appreciate what you do each and every time we request your help. Thank you to these businesses that donated equipment, materials or supplies: Martin Swanty Hyundai, Bob Kay State Farm Insurance, Eastside Shell, Sysco Foods, Ledcor Construction Inc., McKee Foods, Julie at Culligan Water, Kmart, Westside Disposal Services, Kingman Portable Toilets, Pepsi Bottling Group of Kingman, Swire Coca Cola Bottling of Kingman, Kingman Readi Ice, Merten's Heavy Equipment and Repair, Jay Nistetter of Rhino Calls, Lee's Uniform, Kingman Regional Medical Center, UniSource Energy Services, Fork in the Road Inc., Hualapai Mountain Medical Center and Zebco Brands Fishing Gear.

To these agencies that contributed time, energy, supplies and funds to help us succeed, we also thank you for your support: Arizona Game and Fish, Mohave Sportsman Club, Pinion Pines Fire Department, Mohave County Sheriff's Department and their Civil Volunteers, Kingman Academy of Learning, City of Kingman, Mohave County Health Department, Kingman Elks Lodge No. 468, and Arizona Game and Fish for their generous funding. This year we enjoyed a special treat with the Kingman Office of Bureau of Land Management who brought their reptile exhibit to our event.

Special thanks to Supervisor Watson, Sheriff Sheahan and Mayor Salem for sponsoring kids' trophies for the winners and again to Supervisor Watson for sponsoring the award medallions for all the special needs participants.

Finally, to those dedicated group of committee members, we truly appreciate the time and energy you all put in during the monthly meetings, time away from family and often times money to plan and conduct this fun-filled day.

We hope we have mentioned everyone who helped make these events so rewarding and successful, and have high expectations for next year. Thank you again, Kingman, for allowing us to conduct such a tremendous event for our local youth.

Jerry Grimes, Past State President

Kingman Elks Lodge No. 468

Fishing for Smiles Coordinators