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Photo of five anglers fishing from Weborg Pier at Peninsula State Park at sunset

Fishing from Weborg Pier at Peninsula State Park at sunset. Photo: Nick Meiers

Angler Recruitment, Retention and Reactivation Grant Program

Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration logo

The Angler Recruitment, Retention, and Reactivation (Angler R3) grant program provides financial assistance to partners who conduct Angler R3 programs and activities in Wisconsin. Funding is  provided through the Dingell-Johnson Sportfish Restoration Act, a federal aid program.

The goals of the Angler R3 grant program are to grow the numbers of anglers in Wisconsin and expand angling participation among adults, particularly from non-traditional audiences. To achieve these goals, the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) will award cost-sharing funds to community based organizations, community centers, government agencies, Wisconsin tribes, colleges, universities and schools to ensure the education and development of safe and ethical adult anglers.

Grant awards may be up to 75% share of total eligible project costs.

 ⚠ This grant will be administered as a reimbursement program.

This means the award recipients must incur and pay costs associated with the project before seeking reimbursement from the DNR. Any project work started prior to the signed grant agreement is not reimbursable. The project must be complete before the end date of the signed grant agreement.

Who can apply

Eligible Applicants

  • Wisconsin counties, towns, villages, and cities
  • Wisconsin universities, colleges and technical schools
  • Other Wisconsin governmental units, as defined in s. 66.299, Wis. Stats. 
  • Wisconsin tribes
  • Wisconsin school districts
  • Community-based organizations (i.e., nature centers, social service agencies, public health centers - particularly those that serve communities of color)
  • Food security and local foods organizations
  • Most, if not all, conservation organizations (i.e., local rod and gun clubs, sporting organizations, local chapters, and national organizations)

Eligible items

Eligible Items

  • Salaries, hourly wages, and fringe benefits for applicant employees
  • Consultant services
  • Purchased services – printing, mailings, room rental
  • Other purchased services (specify in grant application)
  • Office or project supplies (specify in grant application)
  • Project's programming supplies, such as fishing gear (specify in grant application)
  • Background checks of mentors and instructors (required)
  • Equipment purchase (defined as items that cost $5,000 or more)
  • Hourly equipment rental changes (specify in grant application)
  • Other (specify in grant application; e.g. bus or van rental to transport classes for fishing outings)

Ineligible Items

  • Costs incurred before the start date or after the end date of the grant agreement
  • Cost of fishing licenses for mentors/instructors and participants 
  • Cost of routine fishing site maintenance including, by not limited to, mowing grass, painting signs, and debris removal
  • Costs for which payment have been or will be received under another federal funding source
  • Fines and penalties due to violation of or failure to comply with federal, state, or local laws and regulations
  • Applicant's ordinary operating expenses, such as salaries and expenses of public officials that are not directly related to the project
  • Boat, auto, trucks, or office furniture purchases
  • Capital improvement projects
  • Fee simple or easement land acquisitions



Application deadline: September 15th of odd number years (example: 2021)

If this application cannot be submitted electronically, please contact Angler R3 Grant Program manager Karen Blodgett at 715-839-3730.


How to Apply

To be an eligible applicant, application and supporting documentation must be submitted electronically by 11:59 p.m. on the deadline date.

If this application cannot be submitted electronically, please contact Grant Program manager Karen Blodgett at 715-839-3730.

Before applying:

Submit to grant program manager:

For local governments please review for possible additional requirements: Procurement Guide for Local Governments Receiving Grants (State or Federal) from the DNR.

If you have difficulty completing the PDF application, these tips may help.


Reimbursement Process

Before you begin:

These reports must be completed and submitted to the DNR before funds are released for reimbursement. Submit reports to the Angler R3 grant program manager.

To accompany if applicable:

Upon project completion:

These reports must be completed and submitted within 60 days of end date of the grant agreement or completion of project, whichever comes first:

Notice: Some web browsers do not open PDF files on their own. If you experience trouble opening or filling out a PDF form, visit the DNR PDF help for instructions on how to successfully open PDF files.



Additionally, the following list of resources was compiled by the Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation (RBFF) to help you throughout your Angler R3 planning process:


For additional information about the Angler Recruitment, Retention, and Reactivation (R3) grant program please contact:

Theresa Stabo, Angler R3 coordinator
Department of Natural Resources
Bureau of Law Enforcement, LE/8
PO Box 7921
Madison, WI  53707-7921
Phone: 608-577-6332

Karen Bldgett, Angler R3 Grant manager
Department of Natural Resources
Bureau of Community Financial Assistance
1300 W. Clairemont Avenue
Eau Claire, WI  54701
Phone: 715-839-3730

Last revised: Thursday January 16 2020