"Reel Fun" Fishing Program and Photo Contest is Making a Splash
Vermont State Parks and the Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department are teaming up this season with an exciting new program that will encourage park visitors to take advantage of the diverse, easily accessible and family-friendly fishing opportunities that exist in most Vermont State Parks.
"We're thrilled to partner with Vermont Fish & Wildlife to help make fishing more accessible to anglers at Vermont State Parks," said Craig Whipple, Director of State Parks. "There's a strong history of recreational angling at our state parks and we want to continue to bolster that tradition through the 'Reel Fun' program. Whether you want to fish from shore or take out one of our canoes, kayaks or paddleboats, we hope that you will make fishing at a state park a must-do activity this summer."
In addition to hosting "Let's Go Fishing" clinics with trained instructors, 10 state parks will now be providing fishing equipment to visitors on a loaner basis. Included in the equipment will be rods, reels, fishing line and an assortment of lures or baits that can be signed out by park visitors in order to help provide instant access to the sport of fishing. A guide will also be available that includes information about the waterbody, a lake or river map, a list of fish species present, fishing tips, and techniques applicable to each waterway, as well as information about obtaining a Vermont fishing license.
The following state parks will be participating in the "Reel Fun" initiative in 2015: Grand Isle State Park on Lake Champlain, Lake Carmi State Park, Stillwater State Park on Groton Lake, Branbury State Park on Lake Dunmore, Silver Lake State Park, Wilgus State Park on the Connecticut River, Half Moon State Park on Half Moon Pond, Lake St. Catherine State Park, Woodford State Park on Adams Reservoir, and Brighton State Park on Spectacle Pond.
"From my personal experience camping and fishing with my family, I can attest that Vermont's state parks and fishing are a natural combination," said Eric Palmer, director of fisheries with Vermont Fish & Wildlife. "The 'Reel Fun' program will help to make fishing in our state parks an easy option to anyone who might want to try it out."
The program will include a "Reel Fun VT" photo contest where visitors can submit photos of themselves fishing at ANY state parks, not only the parks participating in the program, to either Vermont State Parks or Vermont Fish & Wildlife. At the end of the summer, three winners will be chosen. The first place winner will receive two starter fishing kits as well as a weekend of free camping in a Vermont State Park. The second place winner will receive one starter fishing kit and a 2016 season vehicle pass for Vermont State Parks. The third place winner will also receive a starter fishing kit and a punch card good for 10 visits to any Vermont State Park!
Visitors can submit "Reel Fun VT" photos via email to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com, or can use #ReelFunVT to tag photos on Twitter.
by Chris Adams
Vermont Fish & Wildlife