Horton Hosts Annual Special Needs Fishing Tournament - Major League Fishing
Horton Hosts Annual Special Needs Fishing Tournament
4y • Mason Prince • Angler News
Summertime is the right time for “Big Show” Scroggins’ crab leg creation
9m • Alan McGuckin • Angler News
Howell’s 12th annual boat giveaway fundraiser underway through Nov. 12
1y • Angler News
Bradley Roy’s High School Open Presented by Covercraft Continues for 10th Year
1y • J.D. Blackburn • High School Fishing
From Bass Boat to Kayak in Two Days as Jackson Roumbanis Wins His First-Ever Kayak Tournament
1y • Kendra Cousineau • Angler News
Biffle, Fennel, Martens Inducted into the Bass Fishing Hall of Fame
1y • Rachel Dubrovin • Angler News
VanDam Goes to NASCAR’s Victory Lane
1y • Alan McGuckin • Angler News
VanDam’s Generosity May Lead to More 10-Pounders at Grand Lake
1y • Alan McGuckin • Bass Pro Tour
BALLY BET AOY UPDATE: Can Anybody Catch Wheeler for 2022 Angler of the Year?
1y • Joel Shangle • Bass Pro Tour
Gary Klein to be Inducted into Texas Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame
2y • Texas Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame • Angler News
Kevin VanDam: “My 2022 Toyota Tundra Has Everything but an Ice Scraper”
2y • Alan McGuckin • Angler Columns
Pro Angler Mike McClelland is Fishing for Sweet Treats at Andy’s Frozen Custard®
2y • MLF • Angler News
Tharp is all in with Ark Fishing International
2y • MLF • Angler News
2021: What We’ll Remember From the Year That Was
2y • Jody White • Angler News
Support Aaron Martens’ Family at the Celebration of Life Fundraiser on December 18
2y • Mason Prince • Angler News

Horton Hosts Annual Special Needs Fishing Tournament

Image for Horton Hosts Annual Special Needs Fishing Tournament
Timmy Horton and his fishing buddy Jason Buckalew at a Fishing for Kids fishing rodeo. Photo Courtesy of Timmy Horton
September 21, 2019 • Mason Prince • Angler News

The best moment of MLF pro Timmy Horton’s year isn’t during a Bass Pro Tour event or an MLF Cup event, it’s when he’s back home in Alabama, where he puts on his Fishing for Kids tournament on Pickwick Lake.

Since 1999, Horton has welcomed kids and people with special needs to compete in the fishing tournament. Some competitors fish for bass, others for catfish, some just enjoy being able to ride in a boat, but all look forward to the annual event just like Horton does.

2018 winner Rachel with her boat captain Ronnie Leatherwood. Photo Courtesy of Timmy Horton

“It’s really a family reunion for the folks with special needs and myself,” Horton explained. “It’s the coolest thing I do all year long. I’ve fished with a guy named Jason Buckalew since we first started in the fall of 1999 – the two of us have fished together every year since. Jason has cerebral palsy and is confined to a wheelchair, but he’s just full of life. He really is an inspiration.”

Horton and the participants celebrated their 20th anniversary last year with special jerseys made for the occasion. All decked out in their familiar Timmy Horton lime green and yellow, the participants cheered on the winner, Rachel, and her boat captain Ronnie Leatherwood. Leatherwood is just one of the many boat captains who dedicate their time and effort every year to make it special for the competitors.

“We’ve had the same 40 to 60 boat captains since we started,” Horton said. “They all come back every year because it means as much to them as it means to the participants.”

Horton says a good amount of the participants live in group homes together and are around each other a lot. He says that this event is their time to establish bragging rights.

“They can all tell you what year they won, finished second or third,” Horton said with a chuckle. “They all get so competitive with each other and it’s so fun to watch. Every year when we hand out the awards, I cry every time. It really is a blessing to be able to do this.”

The Alabama pro and the Fishing for Kids tournament will celebrate 21 years on September 28 when the event gets started at Sheffield Ramp on Pickwick Lake in Alabama. Horton asks that if you would like to volunteer, go to Sheffield Ramp on Pickwick Lake at 8:30 a.m. The event runs from 9 to 11 a.m.