HCWA Awards Winners of the 2024 Cubihatcha Kids Fishing Day

For the winner of the biggest catch of the day, the first time was the best time to attend the Henry County Water Authority’s (HCWA) Cubihatcha Kids Fishing Day, held recently at the utility’s Long Branch Reservoir, which is located adjacent to the Cubihatcha Outdoor Education Center in Locust Grove.

Skylar Spence, a 17-year-old junior at Ola High School, reeled in the derby’s biggest fish – a 7-pound/3-ounce catfish – to bring home the trophy as the overall winner. Although he’s fished the HCWA Tussahaw Reservoir before, this was his first time attending the Cubihatcha Kids Fishing Day event. 

“I had a good time, and I caught probably 50 fish and could’ve caught a lot more,” says Spence. “I’ve been trying to catch a catfish for a long time, since last year, and this one (the biggest catch) was just the second one I caught in the morning. This is a very nice event, and I liked it a lot.”

In addition to Spence winning the top award and prize for biggest catch of the day, other age group winners of the 2024 Cubihatcha Kids Fishing Day included:

Age Group 6 and Under

1st Place -- Bentley Huynh, 6, with a catch of 6 pounds/9 ounces

2nd Place -- Aiden Pinone, 5, with a catch of 2 pounds/14 ounces

3rd Place -- Londyn Hall, 6, with a catch of 2 pounds/2 ounces\

Age Group 7 to 12

1st Place -- Micheal Dean, 12, with a catch of 4 pounds

2nd Place -- Emma Postell, 10, with a catch of 3 pounds/11 ounces

3rd Place -- Caleb Keenan, 12, with a catch of 2 pounds/15 ounces

Age Group 13 to 17

1st Place -- Cohen Henderson, 15, with a catch of 4 pounds/2 ounces

2nd Place -- Carter Gibbs, 16, with a catch of 3 pounds/4 ounces

3rd Place -- Megan Powell, 14, with a catch of 2 pounds/8 ounces

This year marked the third annual Kids Fishing Day hosted by the HCWA, the Authority’s Cubihatcha Outdoor Education Center, and the Henry County Outdoor Education Partnership – a 501-c-3 non-profit founded by the HCWA and the Henry County Board of Education. 

“This event provides an excellent opportunity for families to experience the outdoors and enjoy quality time together,” says Ken Presley, HCWA Reservoir Manager. “It has become extremely popular and successful due to the investment from the many generous sponsors and the hard work put in by the HCWA staff and our volunteers.”

The HCWA and its partners host this event annually to engage youth in outdoor recreation and education, while encouraging physical wellness, building social skills among youth, and providing emotional benefits to local children and their families.

“Although there was a lot of hard work that went into the preparation for this event, I believe all our staff and volunteers would agree that it was well worth the effort,” says Jeff Scott, HCWA Naturalist at the Cubihatcha Center. “It was a pleasure to host this free fishing day at our beautiful Cubihatcha Outdoor Education Center and to be able to provide this quality outdoor experience for our Henry County Community.”

The Cubihatcha Outdoor Education Center is the focal point of the HCWA’s public education and outreach. With a long list of additional partners and sponsors supporting the Cubihatcha Kids Fishing Day this year, proceeds will help fund outdoor educational programming at the Center, most notably annual field trips for every third grader in Henry County Schools this fall. 

No fishing license was required for this free family fishing event, since it was held on one of the designated days of the year when the Georgia Department of Natural Resources (DNR) allows fishing on Georgia waters without a license, to promote the sport of fishing in the state.

“The Cubihatcha Kids Fishing Day is an event I look forward to every year,” says Greg Street, a Big Fish Sponsor who has played a leading role in the event’s success since its inception three years ago. Street has been an on-air talent at V-103 for 27 years, in addition to founding “We Need 2 Read,” an initiative to boost literacy and comprehension levels for elementary school students. “The entire Henry County Water Authority family does an amazing job. A special thanks goes out to all the volunteers, families, friends, and of course, the kids, who made this event a success. I look forward to seeing everyone again next year,” adds Street.

For a photo gallery from this year’s event, please visit our website here; while additional information on public fishing is available here, as well as  opportunities for outdoor recreation at the HCWA here.

Sponsors of the 2024 Cubihatcha Kids Fishing Day:

Big Fish Sponsors ($5,000)

* Bennett/Taylor Foundation

* Brent Scarbrough & Company, Inc.

* We Need 2 Read – Greg Street (in-kind)

* Moolah Wireless (in-kind)

Reel Legend Sponsors ($2,500)

* Andy Welch

* Ecolab

* QUIXOTE by Sunset Studios

* Chick-fil-A – Truett’s (in-kind, sandwiches)

* Nana’s Chicken-N-Waffles (in-kind, food truck)

Big Bass Sponsors ($1,000)

* Vulcan Materials

* Bellamy Strickland of McDonough

* Jim Ellis Toyota of McDonough

* Key Curbing

* On Site Paving

* Clayton Appliance

* Barge Design Solutions

* Reeves Young


* Empire Pipe & Supply

* Atlanta Access

* Brown & Caldwell

* Rotary Club of Henry County

* Kendall Newson – Teach a Child to Fish

* City of Locust Grove (in-kind)

Pro Angler Sponsors ($500)

* Warren Holder Equipment in Locust Grove

* Georgia Power

* JWA, Dr. Chris Wood

* AllSouth Environmental Services, Inc.

* Zack Hinton

* Jim Baker

* Jeremy Roberts

* Consolidated Pipe & Supply

* Ruby Collins

* Southside Sportsman Association

* Atlanta Motor Speedway (in-kind)

* Food Depot (in-kind)


* Cherokee Rose

* Krispy Kreme in Stockbridge

* Fun Spot America Theme Parks

* Dave and Buster’s

* Dunkin Donuts – Highway 155

* Academy Sports + Outdoors

* Momentum Church

* Sign Craft

* Blue Bell Creameries

* Nail Heating & Air Conditioning

* GA Department of Natural Resources

* Henry County Fire Rescue

* Henry County Police Department

* Clayton County Water Authority

Captions for photos (top to bottom)

Skylar Spence, 17, a junior at Ola High School, shows off his biggest catch of the day during the third annual Cubihatcha Kids Fishing Day. This catfish weighing 7 pounds and 3 ounces was good enough for top prize as the overall winner.

The winners of the 2024 Cubihatcha Kids Fishing Day, which included an overall winner for the biggest catch of the day and winners in three age groups, receive their trophies and prizes from HCWA General Manager Tony Carnell (far left) and Big Fish Sponsor Greg Street (far right).
Tristan Hom, last year’s winner of the biggest catch, tries to reel in another top fish during the 2024 Cubihatcha Kids Fishing Day held at the HCWA Long Branch Reservoir and adjacent Cubihatcha Outdoor Education Center.

Jayceon High awaits his first fish during this year’s Cubihatcha Kids Fishing Day held at the HCWA Long Branch Reservoir and adjacent Cubihatcha Outdoor Education Center in Locust Grove.


Media Contact:     Chris Wood, Ph.D.

                                    P: 770-757-1681

                                    E: or