By Patricia Hall, FairfaxFamilyFun.com
Teach a kid to fish, and… he or she will have fun, learn about nature, and possibly provide dinner for the family that night! Each year in Northern Virginia there are events designed, in whole or in part, to teach kids to fish. Below we list some of the biggest annual events coming up that can introduce kids to fishing. Best of all, some are free! See below for where to take the kids fishing soon. (Know of another kids’ fishing event coming up? Leave a comment below!)
Saturday, March 18, 2017: Reston Kids’ Trout Fishing Day
Each year, Snakeden Branch Stream is well stocked with hundreds of trout, and kids ages 2 to 12 are provided with all the necessary equipment for them to learn about fishing and make a catch. Volunteers will show kids how to bait, cast, hook, and even cook their freshly caught dinner (Trout Unlimited members also will help kids clean their catch). Registration is required for this event, and all kids must be accompanied by an adult (who may not fish during this time).
Saturday, March 25, 2017: Annual Kid’s Trout Fishing Derby
At this event, the stream at Sugarland Run Trail behind the Herndon Police Station will be stocked with trout. Limited fishing poles and bait will be available for use. Trout Unlimited will help clean and store your catch. This event is for children ages 2-15 and takes place from 8 am to noon. Pre-registration is $8 per child; event-day/on-site registration is $12 per child (bring cash or check). The derby is held behind the Herndon Police Station at 397 Herndon Parkway. Teens and adults, age 16 and up, may fish but must have a valid Virginia State Fishing License.
Saturday, April 1, 2017: City of Fairfax Fishing Derby
Join the City of Fairfax for a morning of fishing on April 1st at the Fishing Derby! Pre-registration is required, so grab your spot before it’s gone! Ashby Pond Conservatory will be well stocked with hundreds of trout. Please bring a fishing rod, bucket, plastic bag and ice. A limited quality of fishing rods will be available on site to borrow. Bait will be supplied. Volunteers will provide instruction, pond education and fish cleaning demonstrations. Fee: $5 per fisherman (PRE-REGISTRATION REQUIRED) Three 45-minute fishing time slots available: 9:30 AM, 10:15 AM, 11:00 AM. Tickets available on-line and at Sherwood Center, Green Acres Center and City Hall P&R Office starting Monday, February 1, 2017. Call 703-385-7858 for more information.
Saturday, April 22, 2017: Town of Vienna Family Fishing Rodeo
The annual Family Fishing Rodeo takes place at Wolftrap Creek in Wildwood Park, 700 block of Follin Lane SE. The creek will be well stocked with hundreds of trout, and volunteers will provide instruction, stream education, and fish-cleaning demonstrations. Participants are asked to bring a fishing rod, bucket, plastic bag, and ice; a limited number of fishing rods will be available on site to borrow, and bait will be supplied. Catch a tagged fish to win a gift card from a local merchant! Six time slots are available from 10 am to 12:30 pm. Tickets are $3 per fisher (limit six fishers per household) and preregistration is required.
Friday-Sunday, June 2-4, Virginia Free Fishing Days
Multiple locations, VA
On these dates, no fishing license of any kind will be required for rod and reel fishing in freshwater or saltwater, except in designated stocked trout waters. The Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries has more information, including a Where to Fish section.