This year our club joined the support team of the Denny Leeson Memorial Urban Fishing Project. Through Rotary, Club member Sandy Marincic has been involved in funding the event for the past 25 years, and been its chief organizer for the past seven. Along with the fishermen volunteers and the City of Hamilton, we provided a fun fishing experience to the greater Hamilton region’s special needs community. The derby takes place annually, in the first full week of May, from Monday to Thursday. In all, some 360 participants of all ages get their turn at holding a rod and trying to ‘catch a big one’.
Noah and his fish

“It was great to see the looks of apprehension turn into wonder and joy as the kids really got into it”, said John Janisse, who cooked hot dogs on Tuesday while a group of 24 young people had their turn at Parkdale Pool.
Our guests wouldn’t have this opportunity without Denny Leeson’s dedication over 30 years. Denny passed away in the summer of 2013, and the project is the product of the loving and the gentle relationship he had with his daughter Donna, who has Downs Syndrome. Sandy remembers Denny's committment. "Denny connected with developmentally challenged people through his heart, and that connection blossomed into an event that the developmentally challenged community looks forward to every year."