BEAUMONT, Miss. (WDAM) - These days you mostly hear about children tapped into video games and different in-house-based activities, but one Beaumont man is introducing local kids to fishing.
Richard Parker is the founder of Bass Tactix Youth Fishing based out of Beaumont.
The organization was created in 2016 and is a Christian based youth fishing program that incorporates youth, adults, and veterans under the FLW and Fishers of Men Ministries and National Tournament Trail.
The tournament all began at two local high schools in the Pine Belt: Perry Central High School and Oak Grove High School.
Today, there are several programs across the state participating. Bass Tactix is a non-profit organization that welcomes all sponsors.
Hunter Wedgeworth is a participant in the fishing program and was named state champ back in February.
WDAM talked with Wedgeworth and his coach about the days leading up to the competition.
“Being around all these boys that really fish it makes me actually learn more because I have to learn more, to be able to keep up with all them boys because some of them are really, really good fisherman," said Hunter.
Hunter said that his father continues to motivate him while on the water.
“Everything really becomes between me and my dad, we do a lot of fishing together and we just learned from each other and it gets me better and better every year,” said Hunter.
Founder of Bass Tactix Youth Fishing, Richard Parker said the program brings together all ages from the Pine Belt and surrounding areas.
“The kids throughout the state anywhere from kindergarten through 12th grade. And once they graduate, they have an opportunity to go and fish in any of their colleges across the United States,” said Parker.
Hunter’s father, Tim Wedgeworth, said that fishing has a positive impact on the Pine Belt community.
“It gets the kids off the streets, anything to get them kids off the streets and in the woods and on the water. They can learn nature, learn different techniques, power feeds different aspects of the fish and it’s just a whole win,” said Tim.
Hunter will go on to compete against at least 800 high school students on Pick Wick Lake in Alabama hoping to bring back a big fish.
To read more about the organization visit Basstacticsmshs.com.