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Stock the Yough program to continue

| Tuesday, March 22, 2011

West Newton's "Stock the Yough" program is going to live on after all.

About 10 to 12 members of West Newton Sportsmen's Association have agreed to serve on a committee aiming to take over operation of the popular effort, which releases trout into the Yough River each spring. A meeting being held at the club tonight will finalize the details.

"That's when we'll decide who's going to handle what," said club director Gary Allen of South Huntingdon Township. "It's going to be a lot of footwork, a lot of footwork. But we're going to try it."

The Stock the Yough program has been around for about 40 years. Stan Sanner - who passed away Dec. 31 - had almost single-handedly run it for the last 30 years or so.

His death left the program with an uncertain future. His daughters and friend, Henry Abbot, are using leftover money and funds collected in lieu of flowers as a tribute to Sanner to buy trout that will be stocked April 9, 15, 23 and 30 and May 7.

As recently as the beginning of this month, though, no one could say where things were going to go after that.

But a meeting at West Newton Sportsmen's Association last week drew one of the largest crowds in recent memory, with all of those people voicing support for the continuation of the program, Allen said.

That's when a committee of volunteers started coming together, he added.

Now the group plans to meet with Abbot and Sanner's family to get more details on such nuts-and-bolts facets as who manufactured the "Stock the Yough" buttons sold to anglers to raise money and where those trout can be purchased.

That's been Angelo's Trout Farm in Normalville for years, but Allen said the committee may want to shop around and solicit bids.

One way or another, though, the goal is to keep the program alive, he said.

"We don't want to lose what we have. A lot of people look forward to it," Allen said. "And it helps West Newton. It brings a lot of fishermen in, and they stop to eat in restaurants, to buy gas, to buy bait.

"That's all why there's a lot of interest in keeping this going."

Additional Information:

The stockings

Here's a look at when trout will be stocked in the Yough River this year in West Newton.

-- 1 p.m. April 9

-- 6 p.m. April 15 (fish will also be stocked in Goehring Park Pond)

-- 1 p.m. April 23

-- 1 p.m. April 30

-- 1 p.m. May 7

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