Rose Holland 50th Anniversary

William E. Towell, director of conservation, is pictured unveiling the memorial for Roosevelt “Rose” Holland after Holland’s death in 1963. Holland worked at Montauk for 24 years. Every year since his death from a heart attack, a trout derby benefiting heart health has been held in his honor.

The 59th Annual Rose Holland Trout Derby is planned at Montauk State Park from Sept. 30-Oct. 2. The theme is Catching Rainbows, with derby fishing hours of Saturday, 7:30 a.m. until 6:30 p.m.; and Sunday, 7:30-11:30 a.m. Derby registration is $2 and can be purchased to the left of the lodge entrance during the hours of Friday, 4-8:30 p.m.; Saturday, 6:30 a.m. - 8:30 p.m.; and Sunday, 6:30 a.m.-11:30 a.m.

Plans for the weekend include:


• A Cruise-In Car Show, from 4-8 p.m. at the parking lot across from the lodge. The event is sponsored by Current River Cruisers Club.

• Nature Bingo with a park naturalist, at 6 p.m., at the campground theater.


• The country store and bake sale will take place noon-4:30 p.m. at the Searcy Meeting Room (Across from the lodge. Early bakery items at Registration Booth).

• Hike for your Heart on Pine Ridge Trail, from 10 a.m. -11:30 a.m. Meet at the Stone Shelter.

• Learn about and play old-time traditional and indigenous games from 1:30 – 3 p.m. at the Shady Picnic Tables across from the Mill.

• Know The Dark Night Hike will begin at 8 p.m. Meet at the naturalist office.

• Kid's Inflatable obstacle course is open from 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. in the open field between the lodge and the mill.

• Live entertainment will take place from noon until 4:30 p.m. in front of the lodge. Bring your lawn chair and enjoy the music from SugaRose, Mike & Cindy, Cedar Hills, folk-pop-classic rock; Current River Band, bluegrass; 3:30-4:30 p.m. James Vankirk, little bit of everything.

• Auction by Larry Edwards, auctioneer, at 5 p.m. across the street from the lodge.


Prizes will be awarded at noon. Attendance Prizes and men & women's heaviest-kids heaviest stringer; heaviest brown trout - tagged fish caught and registered.

The event is sponsored by anglers and friends of Montauk State Park and coordinated with the Department of Natural Resources. All proceeds benefit the American Heart Association.

In 2021, the derby saw over 1,100 tags were sold, including Saturday, 764; Sunday 434.

Derby namesake, Roosevelt “Rose” Holland, started his career at Montauk State Park in 1938, a quarter of a century before the first trout derby was held in his honor Oct. 3, 1964. Anglers from near and far still flock to Montauk for fishing and fun in Holland’s name.

Holland was born in the vicinity of Montauk Sept. 10, 1903. He was the second independent trout hatchery manager at Montauk, staying for 24 years. Holland died of a heart attack in his home, across the road from the hatchery Jan. 29, 1963.