May 28, 2014
MADISON - People itching to try fishin' can reel in the fun on June 7-8, when fishing is free everywhere in Wisconsin. More than two dozen free fishing clinics statewide can help people get started, as can fishing equipment available for loan from more than 50 DNR sites including many state parks.
"June 7-8 is our Free Fun Weekend and it offers wonderful opportunities for people to coax their friends and families outdoors to try fishing," says Theresa Stabo, Department of Natural Resources angler education coordinator.
"We have free loaner gear that people can borrow at many of our state parks, all of which are open for business free of charge on this weekend. And fishing clubs, civic organizations and DNR staff are providing learn to fish opportunities all across the state."
On Free Fun Weekend, Wisconsin residents and visitors also can enjoy free entry to state parks, forests and recreation areas, bike state trails for free, and ride their ATVs and UTVs on public trails open to such use.
"The fun doesn't have to end when Free Fishing Weekend is over; buy a fishing license to go out and do it again," Stabo says. "We have a first-time buyer's license that costs $5, and other discounted licenses that make it easy to get out and enjoy this great activity."
Residents and visitors can fish for free anywhere within Wisconsin on June 7-8 - neither a fishing license nor inland trout stamp nor Great Lakes trout stamp are needed. All other fishing regulations governing the species, number and size of fish anglers can keep are still in place, as are fishing season dates.
People who don't have their own fishing equipment can borrow rods and reels and other gear from nearly 50 DNR tackler loaner sites across the state. Many of these loaner sites are located at state parks on lakes or along rivers.
To borrow the equipment, contact the DNR staff listed at the site to arrange to pick up the gear.
People who want a little fishing instruction before making their first cast can find it at more than two dozen fishing clinics offered statewide. The fishing clinics, conducted by fishing clubs, civic organizations and DNR staff, are free. Many of them are targeted to kids, but others are open to all ages and parents or guardians are required for children. Most of the clinics supply equipment during the instruction and fishing time; others note where loaner equipment is limited.
The current listing reflects the information provided to DNR as of Tuesday, May 27; check back for more listings as Free Fun Weekend gets closer.
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Theresa Stabo, 608-266-2272