DEEP: Great Park Pursuit Connecticut State Parks Family Adventure Begins May 13th

2017 Press Release
May 12, 2017
Great Park Pursuit Connecticut State Parks Family Adventure Begins May 13th 
May 13th is “Free Fishing Day” in Connecticut
No fishing license will be required – Excellent opportunity for everyone to try fishing for free
May 13th is a great day to be outdoors with your family – first day of Connecticut’s Great Park Pursuit, Connecticut State Parks Family Adventure and Free Fishing Day across the state.  
A “Family Fishing Day” is scheduled as part of Connecticut’s Department of Energy and Environmental Protection’s (DEEP) “Great Park Pursuit Connecticut State Parks Family Adventure” at Chatfield Hollow State Park, Killingworth. Open to families and children, this free event will run from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., and will include fishing on the pond, fish sampling, fish stocking, a fish fry, and fun activities for all ages.
“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 – no fishing license required, open to residents and non-residents alike,” said DEEP Commissioner Robert Klee. “Great Park Pursuit families have the opportunity to fish side-by-side with expert anglers for an exciting and educational fishing experience. Along with Great Park Pursuit participants, we also hope that visitors will come to our state and try out the many fishing opportunities Connecticut has to offer.”
Connecticut Aquatic Resources Education (CARE) volunteer instructors will be on hand to
introduce families and friends to the wonders of water, fish, and fishing.  State certified Instructors will pass along information and expertise they’ve gained while angling in local waters for many years. 
The Great Park Pursuit is a part of the agency’s No Child Left Inside® initiative, now celebrating its 12th year, 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 is free and no registration is required.  More information on the “The Great Park Pursuit Family Fishing Day” can be found at, by calling DEEP State Parks at (860) 424-3200 or by emailing: 
“The Great Park Pursuit has been so much fun over the past eleven years – seeing families come back year after year and watching their children grow has been heartwarming and it is 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” added Commissioner Klee.
There are a number of fishing events in addition to the Great Park Pursuit that are scheduled to take place on “Free Fishing Day.” 
Other fishing events for this coming Saturday include:
  • 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 10:00 a.m. and
    2:00 p.m. Fly casting, knot tying, aquatic insect identification and a late barbecue lunch are on the schedule. More information can be found at For reservations email or call 203-216-7078.
  • Mirror Lake, Hubbard Park, Meriden, CT- Carl D’Addaraio 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 registration begins at 9:00 a.m. and the derby starts at 10:00 a.m. and ends at 12:00 noon. For more information contact Mike Roberts at
  • Fishing Northeast invites all children and their families to Casting With Kids at Picket’s Pond, Osbornedale State Park, Derby, for a fun-filled day of fishing, games, food and great company.  All children will be taught the basics of fishing freshwater with all gear, tackle and bait provided.  Adults are welcome to join in but must provide their own gear and tackle.  Snacks, food and drinks will be provided.  This is a free event – 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. Details are available at:
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 2017 Connecticut Angler’s Guide, found online at  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 including the new interactive trout stocking map can be found on the DEEP web site at:  Fisheries and Wildlife can be found directly on Facebook at