Test the waters with free fishing - East Valley Tribune: Get Out

Test the waters with free fishing

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Posted: Thursday, June 9, 2005 11:03 am | Updated: 9:53 am, Fri Oct 7, 2011.

Fishers of all ages are invited to Mesa’s Red Mountain Park on Saturday to try their hand at fishing for free.

Fishing rods and reels will be available to borrow and free bait will be offered for the fishing extravaganza from 7 to 11 a.m. at the park, 7800 E. Brown Road.

It’s all part of the Arizona Game and Fish Department’s annual free fishing day, celebrated to coincide with National Fishing and Boating Week June 4-12, said Eric Swanson, an urban fishing program manager.

"It’s an opportunity to put an emphasis on the joys and pleasures of participating in fishing," Swanson said. "It removes the barrier of a license and gives new fishers a chance to try their hand or adults a chance to revisit something that maybe they haven’t experienced in many years."

Red Mountain Park is one of seven sites around the state where the Arizona Game and Fish Department will host the fishing clinics, with the free availability of the rods, reels and bait.

However, a license is not needed on Saturday to fish at any public park across the state, Swanson said.

"This is a chance for families to connect and have some time together, get some childhood memories or pass on that fishing legacy," Swanson said.

The Red Mountain lake will be stocked with extra catfish and sunfish, along with the regular bluegill, carp and bass, Swanson said.

The Mesa lake is one of 20 lakes throughout the state specially designated with the urban fishing program. The Arizona Game and Fish Department partners with the city to regulate the lake and stock it "heavily with very nice size fish," Swanson said.

For information on obtaining a fishing license, visit www.azgfd.gov or call (866) 462-0433.

Check it out

What: Arizona Game and Fish Department’s free fishing day and clinic

When: 7 to 11 a.m. Saturday

Where: Red Mountain Park, 7800 E. Brown Road in Mesa

Info: (866) 462-0433

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