ESCANABA, Mich. (WJMN) – The Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) announced that the annual Kids Fishing Day will be return for its 30th anniversary this June in Escanaba.

Kids Fishing Day will take place on Saturday, June 10 at the DNR’s Pocket Park located on the Upper Peninsula State Fairgrounds.

Activities at the event include bluegill fishing, minnow races and face painting, along with free food and raffle prizes. Activities are open to any kids ages 16 or younger and are free of charge.

Greg Karch, a certified angler instructor and founder of the non-profit organization Learn 2 Fish with Us, will be returning to the event this year to teach kids how to cast a fishing line and tie fishing knots.

Registration for Kids Fishing Day will be from noon to 1:30 p.m. EDT and the event will run until 3 p.m. The first 300 participants will receive a goody bag.  

After previously hosting Kids Fishing Day at Camp 7 for many years, the DNR relocated the event to Escanaba in 2022.

“We are excited to hold the event for the second time at the Pocket Park,” said Gary Olson, a Kids Fishing Day team member and organizer. “It offers plenty of space for most all the traditional fun favorites at Kids Fishing Day events, plus some new activities; and the Pocket Park offers a beautiful natural-like setting right in the middle of Escanaba.”

Keep an eye out for Smokey Bear, who will be wandering the grounds. The DNR will have an animal furs display allowing kids to touch and learn about various animal coats, as well as a scavenger hunt and opportunities for kids to learn how to shoot at the Pocket Park’s archery and pellet gun ranges.

The 2023 Kids Fishing Day will be held in conjunction with the DNR’s Free Fishing Weekend. You can learn more about available camping on the fairgrounds by contacting the Delta County Chamber of Commerce.

The DNR Pocket Park is located nearest Gate No. 1 at the fairgrounds, which can be accessed from 12th Avenue North.

Event partners include the Bay de Noc Great Lakes Sports Fishermen, Inc., Michigan Department of Natural Resources and the USDA Forest Service.

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