The free clinics will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Participants receive instruction on the proper use of equipment and techniques, knot tying, safety and much more. The clinics last about 45 minutes and begin every hour on the hour starting at 9 a.m., with the last one starting at 2 p.m. If the weather and ice conditions allow, kids will be able to fish after receiving the classroom instruction.
"These free clinics are a great way to get kids involved in fishing and let them know about the urban fishing ponds near them," says Laura Schmidt, the Department of Natural Resources fisheries biologist involved in the clinics. "Local fishing clubs and other partners make these clinics work and we're grateful they are again volunteering their time to introduce a new generation to the fun of fishing."
The clinics represent a cooperative effort by the Wisconsin Council of Sport Fishing Organizations, Milwaukee County Parks, the Hunger Task Force Fish Hatchery, and DNR.
No pre-registration is necessary for the clinics. Equipment and snacks will be provided and it's all free! Just dress warm!
As in past years, the classroom instruction will occur regardless of weather and ice conditions on Feb. 9, with the actual ice fishing portion of the clinics dependent on the day's conditions. The urban fishing ponds and lagoons where the clinics will be held will be stocked with fish this week; such waters have year-round seasons and no length limits to make fishing more easily accessible in urban areas.
The locations for the clinics and the sponsoring fishing clubs follow:
Brown Deer Park, 7835 N. Green Bay Road; clinic hosted by Okauchee Fishing Club;
Dineen Park, 6901 W. Vienna St.; clinic hosted by Inner City Sportsmen's Club;
Humboldt Park, 3000 S. Howell Ave., clinic hosted by Great Lakes Sport Fishermen;
McCarty Park, 2567 S. 79th St.; clinic hosted by Southside Sportsmen Club; and
Scout Lake, 5902 W. Loomis Road, a wheelchair accessible site, hosted by Walleyes Unlimited.
For more information about the clinics go to dnr.wi.gov and search for "fishing clinics" or call the DNR Urban Fishing Hotline at 414-263-8494 or Laura Schmidt at 414-416-0591.