The Kids Fishing Day event has a new location for 2022 | News, Sports, Jobs


These two young girls are beyond thrilled with their catch at the DNR Pocket Park fishing pond. (Courtesy picture)

ESCANABA — After a two-year hiatus related to the coronavirus, the Kids’ Fishing Day team has announced the return of the 29th annual Kids’ Fishing Day event. The day of fun, fishing and families will take place on Saturday, June 11 in Delta County.

Registration for the Kids Fishing Day will begin at 11 a.m. and the event will continue until 3 p.m. All activities are free and open to young people aged 16 and under.

“With vaccines available for all children ages 5 and up (and hopefully available for young people by June), the team believes the event can once again be held safely at the outside”, said Gary Olson, longtime team member and organizer of the Kids’ Fishing Day. “However, Kids Fishing Day will have a new home in 2022.”

In January, the US Forest Service informed the Kids Fishing Day team that the agency would not be able to sponsor the event at its traditional Camp 7 Lake campsite this year. The decision was based on the coronavirus and the lack of Forest Service personnel available to safely and adequately assist in monitoring and assisting the event. The Forest Service has suggested that the Bay de Noc Great Lakes Sport Fishermen Club could apply for a permit to hold the event at Camp 7, but no assurances have been given that the team could obtain a permit in time to plan the event.

So the team then searched for a new location not on national forest land. Brainstorming and research resulted in a suitable alternative site found at the Michigan Department of Natural Resources Pocket Park, which is located on the Upper Peninsula State Fairgrounds in Escanaba.

“It provides plenty of space for most traditional fun activities at Kids Fishing Day events, as well as new activities,” says Olson. “And the Pocket Park has a beautiful natural setting right in the middle of Escanaba.”

Familiar throwback activities include bluegill fishing (in an upper peninsula-shaped pond), casting contest, minnow races, face painting, and alien water games, plus free food and prizes of raffle.

In addition, Smokey Bear will be walking around the grounds, and the DNR will be hosting an animal fur exhibit (where youngsters can touch and experience various animal coats), a scavenger hunt, and opportunities for kids to learn how to shoot Pocket Park archery and pellet gun ranges.

This year’s Kids Fishing Day event will be held in conjunction with the DNR’s Free Fishing Weekend, which means license fees are waived for Michigan residents and out-of-state visitors.

The DNR also waives recreational passport requirements over the weekend, allowing free access to boating access sites, state parks, campgrounds and other sites. Camping is also available at the fairgrounds.

DNR Pocket Park is located closest to Fairgrounds Gate #1, accessible from 12th Avenue North.

“The goal of Kids Fishing Day is to introduce young people and their families to the joys of fishing in the great outdoors of Michigan,” says Olson. “The Kids Fishing Day team and the DNR are delighted to bring this event to life after a two year absence. We look forward to seeing many familiar faces, as well as newcomers. »

For more information, or if you would like to volunteer to help out at the event, contact Jo Ann at 906-786-2351.

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