Volunteers who can provide boats are needed for two days of fishing at Lake Texoma for children who have life-threatening or chronic illnesses.
About 180 children are expected to attend Camp Cavett, which includes Striper Day on Thursday and the fish-for-anything derby Saturday.
The camp needs about 45 striper boats Thursday and 80-plus bass boats Saturday, said Gene Gilliland, of the North Oklahoma City Bassmasters Club.
As of last week, organizers had only about 25 boats total for the two fishing days, Gilliland said. Volunteers are asked to register in advance, he said.
Danny Cavett, chaplain at The Children's Hospital at OU Medical Center, is the man for whom the Cavett Kids Foundation based at OU Medical Center is named. The foundation's mission is to provide five camps, including Camp Cavett, and other events and programs for outpatient children from The Children's Hospital who have life-threatening and chronic illnesses.
“It's important for the kids because even if they don't catch a fish, they get two chances, Thursday and Saturday, to see fish being caught,” Cavett said. “They get to see kids having a success that they don't usually get.”
At the camp, a boat usually carries a boat captain, camp counselor and one to four children, depending on boat capacity, Gilliland said.
“Thursday's Striper Day is a bit easier to recruit for because there are lots of local guides who help, and their boats are larger,” Gilliland said. “Saturday's derby has typically relied on bass boats that offer the kids a thrill ride in addition to the fishing. But smaller, faster bass boats hold fewer people, and that equals a need for more boats.”
Those volunteering as boat captains for either or both fishing days will be asked to report at 6 a.m. Thursday and Saturday to Catfish Bay Marina at Lake Texoma. Saturday, the Oklahoma B.A.S.S. Nation State Team will conduct the weigh-in for the derby, Gilliland said.
How to help
Those wishing to volunteer Thursday or Saturday, or both days, should contact Larry Cavett at 202-8596 or Eric Cavett at 365-7111. They will collect basic information and provide details for the fishing days.
“This year if boat volunteers want to join us, they can call in and give their basic information so we can register them in advance,” said Larry Cavett, who assists with the camp.
Those wishing to register online can go to www.cavettkidsfoundation.org/volunteers and click on “Volunteer Registration” and follow the steps.