Event of the Week: Vermont Free Fishing Day & Family Fishing Festival

Vermont’s annual, statewide summer Free Fishing Day is set to take place on Saturday, June 10, and will be highlighted by the 17th annual Grand Isle Family Fishing Festival, as well as the opening of the state’s traditional bass fishing season.

“Vermont’s Free Fishing Day enables both residents and non-residents to go fishing in Vermont waters for the day without a fishing license,” said Adam Miller, fish culture operations manager with Vermont Fish & Wildlife. “This is a great opportunity for folks to try out fishing for the first time, or for a non-resident to sample the great fishing Vermont has to offer.

“The day also coincides with the Grand Isle Family Fishing Festival,” added Miller. “This event is a ton of fun and a great way for children and families to get involved in the sport of fishing while also spending time together outdoors.”

The family fishing festival will be held at the Ed Weed Fish Culture Station located at 14 Bell Hill Road in Grand Isle. The festival will run from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Designed for young anglers and families, this exciting event offers basic fishing instruction and the chance for kids to catch big trout in the hatchery pond. No prior fishing experience is needed and Vermont Fish & Wildlife will supply fishing rods, reels and bait for participants.

Anyone with questions about the festival can contact the Ed Weed Fish Culture Station at 802-372-3171.

Along with Free Fishing Day and the Grand Isle Fishing Festival, June 10 also marks the start of the Vermont bass season. The season opens each year on the second Saturday in June and extends through the last day of November. However, outside of these dates, anglers may target bass in open water by practicing catch-and-release only using artificial lures and flies on waters that are not seasonally closed.

Vermont Fish & Wildlife has also teamed up with Vermont State Parks to offer the ‘Reel Fun Vermont’ program at 18 state parks across the state this summer, making fishing easy and accessible for park visitors. The program provides loaner tackle kits and fishing clinics, free of charge, to anyone interested in fishing at a Vermont State Park.

Finally, the department provides a range of other opportunities and resources for those new to the sport, as well as for nonresidents looking to go fishing in Vermont for the first time.  Such resources include instructional guides on the basics of fishing, family-friendly fishing opportunities, fish stocking schedules and fishing in Chittenden County.

To learn more about fishing in Vermont, or to purchase a fishing license, click here.