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I’ve been busy planning my summer fishing trips to local area lakes and my annual trip to northern Minnesota just before fall. This year’s late summer trip to Lake Vermilion is going to be very different, because my usual fishing partner is not going to with me this year. He has some early college classes and can’t make the trip.

My son has been fishing with me for 15 years – but not this summer. Thinking about all the great trips we have had together, I have many great memories. I remember as if it were yesterday when he caught his first fish, the look of great accomplishment on his face.

What an outstanding day. There have been so many trips together, each loaded with unforgettable moments small and large but all shared.

All these memories brought back the fishing trips I took with my Dad and my Grandfather as I grew up. I remember my Grandfather putting a container with a pound of chicken liver in it on the back porch on Monday. That meant catfishing on Saturday. Saturday morning we’d grab the liver, fishing rods, a stringer and our trusty green Johnson 10hp motor that required Dad’s special touch to get it started.  We’d head down to the Fox River near Cary, rent a boat and spend the day catching a load of channel catfish. Grandfather’s chicken livers seemed to be magic bait to a six-year-old; It took many years before I learned why they worked so well.  On these trips I also learned to love coffee. My Dad and my Grandfather used to bring two thermoses of black coffee with us when we fished, and nothing else, so I learned to like coffee.

I guess with all this rambling about fishing with my son, and the memories of fishing with my Dad and Grandfather, the point is that everyone should be planning to create a few memories. Start small with a Saturday at Lovelace Park, or plan to do a little fishing on your vacation this year. The time slips away quickly so don’t miss the chance to create a few memories for family and kids. Until next time, keep a tight line.

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