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MP closes trout season with pet benefit

MEDICINE PARK  A weekend fishing tournament will celebrate the close of the Medicine Creek trout season, as well as help some four-legged companions at the Lawton Animal Welfare shelter who are in need of new homes.

John McClain, owner of Little Dam Bait Shop in Medicine Park, will host his third trout tournament March 17. Signups are open and McClain is confident of a strong turnout.

"The weather is going to be nice and there's going to be a lot of fish biting," he said. "Judging by the reaction I've seen so far, we're going to have a good crowd of people."

Entry is $25 for participants 16 years and older and $10 for anyone 15 years and younger. In previous tournaments, McClain has partnered with Lawton Animal Welfare to host an adoption event. He said he couldn't coordinate schedules to host another one this time. Instead, he asks anyone who signs up to bring a 5-pound bag of either dog food or cat food, which he will donate to the shelter at the close of the tournament.

"Anyone who brings the food will automatically be entered into a door prize drawing," he said. "I like to help out the shelter as much as possible because they're good people out there and those animals need a home. So anyone who can bring food in for the animals will be appreciated."

Trout season officially ends March 15, just before the tournament. The Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation will stock the creek one last time ahead of the close of the season. McClain said people are still welcome to fish from the creek, but the rules are altered and revert to standard Medicine Creek fishing rules for the rest of the year. Each tournament participant must have a fishing license, but will only have to adhere to the off-season rules, which include allowances for more than one fishing rod.

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