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September 17, 2019

Jacob friede/lakeland times

Addyson Sanchez caught this nice perch at last Tuesday’s “Kids Fishing Day” hosted by the Northwoods Muskies, Inc. Chapter 61 out of Minocqua.
Jacob friede/lakeland times

Addyson Sanchez caught this nice perch at last Tuesday’s “Kids Fishing Day” hosted by the Northwoods Muskies, Inc. Chapter 61 out of Minocqua.
Jacob friede/lakeland times

Emme, left, and Easton Rubo show off the fish they  caught at last Tuesday’s “Kids Fishing Day” held at Minocqua’s public fishing pier.
Jacob friede/lakeland times

Emme, left, and Easton Rubo show off the fish they caught at last Tuesday’s “Kids Fishing Day” held at Minocqua’s public fishing pier.
8/31/2019 7:30:00 AM
Natural Reaction
Northwoods Muskies, Inc. keeps fishing part of summer with 'Kids Fishing Days'
Jacob Friede
Of the Lakeland Times

Kids these days have a plethora of ways to fill their time over summer vacation, and many of those options include staring at a computer screen or holding a cellphone.

The members of the Northwoods Muskies, Inc. Chapter 61 out of Minocqua worked hard this summer to remind kids just as much fun can be had staring at the lake and holding a fishing pole.

On three different occasions over the summer Northwoods Muskies, Inc. held "Kids Fishing Days," on the Minocqua public fishing pier. There, kids had the opportunity to learn fishing basics, fishing identification, and fishing rules and regulations.

With gear and bait supplied, all they had to do is show up and they were ready to roll.

"We got poles and bait and all that type of thing," Northwoods Muskies, Inc. president Pete Stoltman said. "Some kids bring their own stuff, others if they don't have stuff we got rigs all set up to go so we just get them some bait and help them out and if they get lines tangled and need help getting a fish off the hook or putting a worm on, we'll do that. Just trying to see if we can't help get more kids interested in the outdoors."

Nothing piques that interest like actually catching fish, and on all three occasions this summer, including last Tuesday night, kids were reeling them in.

"Bluegills and perch seems to be the main species. The first one in June they were catching crappies, and in July it was almost all bluegills," Stoltman said. "We've got some fish tonight. There have been a handful of fish getting caught."

The rods and reels used at the events were rented from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR). Wardens were also on hand to help and to answer any questions about regulations the kids might have.

All kids who attended a "Kids Fishing Day" also received a prize, such as a fishing pole, tackle box, or lure kit. The prizes were donated by local bait and sport shops.

"To get fishing materials into these kid's hands, because some of them don't have anything," Northwoods Muskies, Inc youth activities director Jeff Kinnally said. "So they get stuff to take home so hopefully they keep wanting to fish."

This summer, there were kids who attended all three events, so it was clear a good amount of them wanted to continue to pursue fishing, and while some kids were already avid anglers, some were getting their first taste of the fun that accompanies the sport.

"They're on all different levels. Some of them have never fished. Some of them this is their first time," Kinnally said. "The July event we had a kid here, I think he was 10 years old, and it was his first fish. First fish he ever caught was here which is pretty cool."

Attendees ranged from local kids to tourists visiting from other states and last Tuesday there was a good mix of boys and girls catching fish.

One fish was caught by a boy and a girl. Brother and sister Easton and Emme Rubo were fishing next to each other when both of their bobbers went down. When they reeled in a bluegill, both of their hooks were attached it. The catch, quite literally, brought the siblings closer together. For a picture with the fish that is. The collaborative catch and the smiles on the siblings' faces were evidence of the magic that can happen when you put a fishing pole in a kid's hands, and by hosting "Kids Fishing Days" the members of Northwoods Muskies, Inc. hope to see a day of excitement turn into a lifetime passion.

"This is kind of a nice way to get kids out and let them have a little fun fishing and see if we can get them interested," Stoltman said. "Turn them into future fishermen."

Northwoods Muskies, Inc plans to hold a "Kids Fishing Day" on the ice this winter.

The date has not been set.

For more information on Northwoods Muskies, Inc. and their mission visit northwoodsmuskies.com.

Jacob Friede may be reached at jacob@lakelandtimes.com.





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