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Selinsgrove teen creates 'lure library' for young fisherman

Mar. 30—SUNBURY — Gavin Landis grew up fishing on Little Shamokin Creek off of Comfort Brothers Road in Sunbury and has installed a "lure library" to inspire other young anglers.

Landis, 16, of Selinsgrove, built the wooden structure to resemble the little free libraries that have popped up in neighborhoods across the country in recent years and stocked it with fishing lures, including flys, spinners, hooks and other items.

"This is where I grew up fishing," he said Friday, standing at the side of the creek near the lure library he built and filled with donations from Cornerstone Carpentry, Southside Tackle, family and friends and installed Thursday.

Landis will be out on the trout-stocked creek today, Mentored Youth Trout Day, a statewide event that begins at 8 a.m. and is open to anglers 15 and younger and licensed adult mentors.

A member of the Susquehanna Valley Fishing Team, Landis said he enjoys working with younger kids and "showing them what I like to do."

A homeschooled high school student, Landis plans to attend SUN Area Technical Institute next year for woodworking. He got the idea for creating the lure library — painted in the local fishing team's colors of neon green and light blue — from a "flybrary project" he saw online involving a board tacked to a tree near a waterway with fishing flies pinned on it.

"We wanted it popping so people could see it," he said of the vivid colors on his project.

Jessica Landis said the lure library was her son's idea and likely sprang from his involvement with the Selinsgrove baseball team, who are encouraged "to give back (to communities) where they came from."

Landowner Jeff Pontius gave permission to install the lure library on the property, she said.

Gavin Landis hopes to inspire others to create similar projects near fishing sites.

"We'd like the public to help," said Jessica Landis. "If you need a lure, take one. And if you have one" put it in the lure library.