SALEM, Ore. – The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife and the Association of Northwest Steelheaders will host the 2008 Salmon and Trout Enhancement Program Conference on Oct. 3-5 at Mt. Hood Community College in Gresham.
Members of the public are invited to join ODFW volunteers, science educators, fisheries professionals and interested citizens in this two-day forum that will address the many issues involved in conserving salmon and trout, and restoring their habitats.
”Volunteers are critical in helping us manage Oregon’s fish resources,“ said Tom Friesen, coordinator of the STEP program. “This conference will provide an opportunity for volunteers and professionals to interact, learn and share ideas.”
On Saturday, concurrent sessions and outdoor clinics will cover over 50 topics including habitat restoration, marine issues, environmental partnerships, fish culture and aquatic education. The day ends with a banquet, awards ceremony, and auction.
In addition, there will be on-going angling clinics and children’s activities, including kid’s fishing at the Mt. Hood pond.
On Sunday, participants can join one of several free tours of nearby facilities and watersheds such as the Bonneville Dam and Hatchery, or habitat restoration projects on the Salmon River.
“We’ve tried to develop a program that will offer participants a broad range of tours, presentations and hands-on experiences,” said Friesen.
For more program details and registration materials, visit the conference website at http://www.dfw.state.or.us/STEP/step-conference.asp. Reduced registration rates are available before September 15.
The Oregon legislature created STEP in 1981 as a way for volunteers to participate in the restoration of native stocks of salmon, steelhead and trout. Since then thousands of volunteers have helped Oregon’s fisheries through their contributions of time, money and materials.