DEEP: Great Park Pursuit Connecticut State Parks Family Adventure

May 6, 2014
 
Great Park Pursuit Connecticut State Parks Family Adventure
Begins May 10th
 
May 10th is also “Free Fishing Day” in Connecticut
 
No fishing license will be required - opportunity for everyone to try fishing for free
 
May 10th is a great day to be outdoors with your family – it’s the first day of Connecticut’s Great Park Pursuit, Connecticut State Parks Family Adventure and also Free Fishing Day across the state.  
 
The Department of Energy and Environmental Protection’s (DEEP) “Great Park Pursuit Connecticut State Parks Family Adventure” kicks off its ninth season at Chatfield Hollow State Park, Killingworth.  A “Family Fishing Day” is the featured event.  Open to families and children, this free event will run from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., and there will be plenty of activities including fishing on the pond, fish sampling, fish stocking, a fish fry, and fun activities for all ages.
 
The Hammonasset Chapter of Trout Unlimited will host its 12th Annual “Youth Fishing Day” at Chatfield Hollow and Great Park Pursuit participants will have the opportunity to rotate through three different stations – Fly Casting, Fly Tying, and River Ecology.
 
The Great Park Pursuit is a part of the agency’s No Child Left Inside® initiative focusing on introducing families to the outdoors, building the next generation of environmental stewards and showcasing Connecticut’s State Parks and Forests.  The Family Fishing event at Chatfield Hollow is free and no registration is required. For more information on the “The Great Park Pursuit Family Fishing Day” email diane.joy@ct.gov, call DEEP at 860-424-397, or visit www.NoChildLeftInside.org.
 
“The Great Park Pursuit has been so much fun over the past eight years – seeing families come back year after year and watching their children grow has been heartwarming,” said Commissioner Klee.  “It is also wonderful to welcome new families who want to learn about the outdoors and recreational adventures that await them in Connecticut’s State Parks and Forests.”
 
FREE FISHING DAY
 
Connecticut’s annual “Free Fishing” Day also takes place May 10.  It is a day when residents and non-residents can fish this state’s waters – both marine and inland – with no fishing license required.
 
“Free Fishing Day is a great opportunity for experienced anglers to encourage family members and friends to join them outdoors for a day of fishing in all publically accessible waters,” said DEEP Commissioner Robert Klee. “We are tying this great day in with the Great Park Pursuit at Chatfield Hollow – but also offering families opportunities to fish at all the great and scenic spots across the state.” 
 
There are also a number of special fishing events – in addition to the Great Park Pursuit fishing activity  – that are scheduled to take place on “Free Fishing Day.”  These include:
 
  • Day on the Farmington River, Whittemore State Recreation Area, East River Road, Barkhamsted, CT – Come enjoy a day on the river with the Farmington Valley Chapter of Trout Unlimited beginning at 10:00 a.m.  Fish, hang out and have lunch.  If you are new to the sport, there will be plenty of experienced anglers there – ready and willing to take you on the river.  If there is inclement weather please check their website at:  http://fvtu.org/?p=593
  • Merwin Meadows, Wilton CT- Fly Fishing Clinic. The Mianus Chapter of Trout Unlimited is offering a free fly fishing clinic at Merwin Meadows Park in Wilton between 8:00 a.m. and
    1:00 p.m. Fly casting, knot tying, aquatic insect identification and a late barbecue lunch are on the schedule. More information can be found at www.mianustu.org. For reservations email jyates@mianustu.org or call 203-216-7078.
  • Mirror Lake, Hubbard Park, Meriden

    • Children’s fishing derby. Annual children's fishing event sponsored by the Meriden Rod and Gun Club and the City of Meriden with prizes in various age groups for biggest fish and most fish caught. Each child also gets a free hotdog and soft drink. Some of the top prizes include bicycles. This event is rain or shine and begins at 10:00 a.m.
    • Introduction to carp fishing: A free talk and demonstration of carp fishing and fishing tackle will be hosted by Saxon Tackle.  Youth carp fishing will also be available.  As there is a limited amount of tackle, plan on sharing so everyone has a chance to try carp fishing.  It is suggested that all fish be released so they can be caught by another angler.  Area experts will be available to help you try out carp fishing and to answer your questions starting at 10:00 a.m. 
 
View DEEP’s video Learn to Fish

Anglers should be aware that although no licenses are required, all other Connecticut fishing laws and regulations apply on “Free Fishing Day.”  Anglers are advised to check fishing regulations in the 2014 Connecticut Angler’s Guide, found online at www.ct.gov/deep/anglersguide

Print versions of the guides are available at more than 350 locations statewide or by contacting DEEP’s Inland Fisheries Division (860-424-FISH). Additional fishing and fisheries related information can be found on the DEEP web site at: www.ct.gov/deep/fishing.  Fisheries and Wildlife can be found directly on Facebook at www.facebook.com/CTFishandWildlife.