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State Honoree

Nathan Rausch

Minnesota

Nathan Rausch, 18, of Park Rapids, Minn., a senior at Nevis Public School in Nevis, created an annual kids’ fishing tournament that not only gives youngsters the chance to fish competitively, but also provides college scholarships for local students. “Six years ago, I tried to enter a local fishing tournament because I love to fish,” said Nathan. “I wasn’t old enough to enter, so my friend and I got the idea to start our own tournament.” Each year, Nathan organizes the Nevis Scholarship Fund Junior Fishing Tournament for kids 17 and under on the Saturday after Labor Day. He designs and prints entry forms, advertises the event, recruits judges and volunteers to staff the contest, arranges for all necessary permits, buys trophies, and approaches local businesses for donations. All proceeds, which have totaled nearly $9,000 over the past six years, are donated to the Nevis Scholarship Fund for graduating seniors of Nevis Public School. Although Nathan is now too old to participate in his tournament, he is making arrangements for the tournament to continue after he graduates from high school.