Clackamas, Ore. — The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife will host a free youth fishing event at the St. Louis Ponds near Woodburn on Saturday, April 5 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
“This is a great experience for kids who are first-time anglers because we bring all of the equipment, and are there to answer questions and teach kids how to fish,” says Danette Ehlers, assistant district fish biologist for the North Willamette Watershed. “St. Louis Ponds are a great place to spend the day outdoors and are very family-friendly. The park has picnic tables, restrooms, and an ADA path and fishing dock.”
The event is part of ODFW’s Youth Angling Enhancement Program, designed to introduce young people to the fun of fishing. The department will provide rods and reels, tackle, bait and fish bags for use by young anglers who do not have their own fishing equipment.
In addition, ODFW staff and volunteers will be on hand from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. to help participants learn how to bait a hook, cast a rod and land the catch. Packets of information including the Easy Angling Oregon booklet also will be available to participants.
In order to increase the fun factor, ODFW will stock over 1,200 rainbow trout, including 250 larger and 10 trophy fish for the event. In addition, even larger-size fish will be purchased from Island Springs Hatchery.
Under Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations, anglers aged 13 and under do not require a license; those 14-17 require a juvenile license. All fishing regulations continue to apply for this event.
To find St. Louis Pond take the Woodburn Exit from I-5 and go east to Hwy 99E. At 99E, turn south to Gervais Road. Go west on Gervais Road through the town of Gervais. The road eventually changes to St Louis Road. Continue west on St Louis Road back over I-5. At the railroad crossing turn left on Tesch Rd., and follow the signs to the ponds. The event will be at pond # 3.
The Youth Angling Enhancement Program was made possible through the Oregon Legislature and a partnership with the Oregon Wildlife Heritage Foundation. For information about the event at St. Louis Ponds, call Danette Ehlers, assistant district fish biologist, at (971) 673-6013. For a list of other YAEP events throughout the state go to http://www.dfw.state.or.us/education/angling/family_fishing.asp