For the eighth straight year Central Okanagan youngsters are encouraged to ‘Go Fish’.
This hugely popular Regional Parks' urban fishery program gets underway this weekend with the grand opening kickoff Saturday, May 3 at the Hall Road pond in Mission Creek Regional Park and on Sunday, May 4 at the special fishing area set up in Shannon Lake Regional Park.
Regional Parks staff and volunteers from participating organizations will provide a barbecue and refreshments to satisfy the appetite and thirst of young fishers and their families.
Each weekend through Sunday, June 15 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., youngsters 15 years of age and under will be able to fish for rainbow trout and are allowed to keep one each day, without a fishing license.
Each Saturday at the Hall Road pond, volunteers from the Kelowna and District Fish and Game Club and Lonely Loons Flyfishers Society will provide equipment and expert fishing guidance while members of the Peachland Sportsmen’s Association will lend their fishing expertise to ‘Go Fish’ participants in the netted area at the south end of Shannon Lake in Shannon Lake Regional Park.
Each Sunday, Regional Parks Services staff will provide equipment and will be available to help youngsters as they try their luck in the two fishing program locations.
With the support of the Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC each fishing area will be stocked several times during the program with rainbow trout measuring 25 – 30 centimetres that have been reared at the Summerland Trout Hatchery.
Each lake was stocked Thursday morning.
“Since the first ‘Go Fish’ was held in 2007, this urban fishery program has seen thousands of youngsters tossing their hook into the water eagerly anticipating that first bite from a young rainbow," said Regional District Communications Officer Bruce Smith.
"For many, ‘Go Fish’ has seen them hook their first fish! Along with our dedicated and passionate volunteers who enjoy passing on their love of the sport, we’ve been able to share the fun and excitement of fishing with a new generation.”
Smith reminds people heading to the event to respect park neighbours and park only in the designated areas or where directed by staff.
"While participants age 15 and under are not required to have a fishing license for this program we ask that they bring their own fishing equipment if possible, as there’s a limited number of rods and reels to borrow at each site.”
The ‘Go Fish’ recreational fishing program is put on by Regional District Parks Services and its volunteer partners, the Kelowna and District Fish and Game Club, Lonely Loons Flyfishers Society and Peachland Sportsmen’s Association along with the support of the Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC, the Summerland Trout Hatchery and the Ministry of Environment.