Contact: Joe Vargo, Perris Public Information Officer
Phone: 951-956-2120

Free Fishing Derby for Kids: Saturday, April 21

Delicious rainbow trout — a fun Saturday dinner!
Delicious rainbow trout — a fun Saturday dinner!

The Lake Perris State Recreation Area is hosting a free fishing derby Saturday for anglers 15 years of age and younger.

The 31st Annual Tommy Thomas Kids Fishing Derby takes place from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. at a cove that has been stocked with rainbow trout weighing from 12 ounces to five pounds, said John Rowe, a Lake Perris superintendent.

“This is a great opportunity for youngsters to experience the joys of fishing,” Rowe said. “We’re looking forward to another gorgeous weekend. It should be lots of fun.”

Rowe said Tommy Thomas was a longtime volunteer for the State Recreation Area who enjoyed fishing and wanted to pass along his love of the sport to youngsters. After he died, his family established a fund to keep the derby in place.

Last year’s event drew about 300 anglers and Rowe said Lake Perris officials are expecting a similar turnout Saturday.
The day’s activities include a free barbecue lunch and a casting contest. Prizes such as fishing tackle will be given away and trophies will be awarded for different categories.

Admission to the derby is free but State Recreation Area officials will charge $5 per vehicle to park for the entire day.  The event is funded completely through donations. To donate or learn more about the fishing derby call (951) 940-5600 or visit the Lake Perris State Recreation Area on Facebook at:

The Lake Perris State Recreation Area is located at 17801 Lake Perris Drive.