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Got license?
Give yourself the license to relax and catch some memories while you're at it.
Know the regulations to make your fishing more enjoyable.
Places to fish
Wisconsin offers a variety of fishing opportunities. Give them a try!
Get started
Get the basic information you need to get on the water and try your luck.
Contact information
For more information, please contact:
Theresa Stabo
R3 Coordinator
Recruitment, Retention, Reactivation

Fishing Wisconsin - Angler & aquatic education Free Fishing Weekend - January 19–20 2019

Host a Free Fishing Weekend event!

Take advantage of this free opportunity to introduce your friends and family to fishing.
All the waters of the state are open; however, all usual regulations are in force.

Planning forms available now!

Download and complete the Free Fishing Weekend Planning Forms [PDF] to give us the details so that we can post your event on this site. If you have difficulties with this form, please contact Andrew Krismer for assistance, 608-333-2057.

Remember to plan for adults who may have missed the fishing boat as kids! We’ll post your events as we learn of them. Of course, you can just take your friends fishing without telling us, but we love to hear your stories about how you coaxed your pals out for a free weekend of fishing.

Attend a Free Fishing Weekend event!

Plans are underway at the following locations to introduce you to the art and science of hardwater fishing. Check out this growing list of opportunities.

Chippewa County
Community: Chippewa Falls, WI
Place: Ojibwa Golf & Bowl on Glen Loch Lake/Reservoir
Parking: Meet and park in the parking lot on the left side of Ojibwa Bowl.
Date: Saturday, January 19, 2019
Time: 12 p.m. – 3 p.m.
Description: An afternoon of fishing instruction and fun!
  • Participants take home a fishing pole and jig (while supplies last)
  • Bait provided
  • No registration required. Just come with your smile
  • Learn ice fishing skills including how to set up equipment and clean the catch
  • See flyer [PDF]
Target Audience: All Ages Welcome!
  • Chippewa Valley Family YMCA
  • Chippewa Rod & Gun Club Inc.
  • Fish Chippewa! Access for All!
  • Ojibwa Golf & Bowl
  • Lumberjack Tools
  • Mason Companies, Inc.
  • Nordson
Contact: For more information contact Ron Bakken, 715-723-7834.
Waukesha County
Community: Watertown, WI
Place: Lower Genesse Lake – Boat launch and parking area
Date: Saturday, January 19, 2019
Time: 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Description: Introduction to ice fishing for novices, experienced kids and families.
Target Audience: All Ages Welcome!
  • American Legion Post 189
  • Frabil
  • Watertown Elk's Lodge
  • Glenn's Market and Catering
  • Dick Smith's Bait Shop
Contact: For more information contact Anthony Dittmann, 920-253-7511.
Winnebago County
Community: Neenah, WI
Place: Lake Winnebago – West Shore Paynes Pt.
Date: Saturday, January 19, 2019
Time: 11 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Description: Family, Friends and Ice Fishing
Target Audience: All Ages Welcome!
Sponsor: Paynes Point Hook & Spear Fishing Club
Contact: For more information contact Stacy Frakes, 920-851-3765.

Check back again for more events. We'll post them as we learn about them!

Dates to remember

Free Fishing Weekends are always held the third full weekend in January and the first full weekend in June.

Need fishing gear?

No fishing gear? No problem. We have fishing poles that you can borrow at many state parks and DNR offices. Contact a Tackle Loaner site at one of several state parks and DNR regional offices to borrow one. Call the DNR staffer or partner listed for each site to find out what specific equipment is available and to arrange to pick it up.

Get a license

New to fishing, but want to make it a habit after Free Fishing Weekend? Try our "First-time buyer" resident license for only $5. Discounts for non-residents too!

Here is more information about purchasing a fishing license so you'll be ready to fish any time of the year!

More fishing opportunities

The Department of Tourism lists events at The Great Outdoors - Fishing, [exit DNR].

Last revised: Thursday December 13 2018