This weekend area residents and their children will be able to experience one of the best activities the area has to offer - and it's free.
This weekend is the Department of Natural Resources Free Fishing Weekend. It's an annual observance each June. This weekend, the requirement of having a fishing license to fish in Michigan waters is waived by the state. In a nutshell, everyone can fish for free.
We feel Free Fishing Weekend is one of the most positive moves the DNR has made and its longevity is a testament to just how popular it has become.
It's no secret that fishing is more than just a pastime in Delta County. With our miles of Great Lakes shoreline and walleye fishery in the Bays de Noc, fishing and Delta County are a natural match. Free fishing weekend can give residents and visitors alike a chance to experience the sport of fishing without purchasing a license. It might be an activity that develops into a life-long passion for some.
Free fishing weekend is also an excellent opportunity to expose children to fishing. Taking a kid fishing will give them a taste of a positive, healthy activity that teaches appreciation for the outdoors. You could be giving a child the gift of an activity they will take part in their entire lives.
Many local groups use Free Fishing Weekend to hold children's fishing events in the area. Through the help of generous sponsors, they are able to offer these events free of charge, serve a free lunch, and award prizes to the kids that take part.
One of these is the annual Thomas A. Vietzke Memorial Children's Fishing Derby at the Gladstone Yacht Harbor Saturday, hosted by Gladstone Masonic Lodge 396 and Delta Masonic Lodge 195. Registration is from 9:30 to 10 a.m. and a free lunch and prizes are provided.
Another is Kids Fishing Day Saturday at the Camp 7 Lake Campground from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. This event, sponsored by the Hiawatha National Forest, is marking its 22nd anniversary. Activities include a casting contest, raffle prizes, free food, fishing ponds for kids ages 12 and under, and more.
These events and many others like them are a credit to the community and its focus on youth. Take some time this weekend to drop a line in the water, and take your favorite kid along. It will be time well spent.