Under a cloudy gray sky, Dworshak National Fish Hatchery (Hatchery) held its 23rd annual Kid’s Fishing Day on May 18, 2013. The Hatchery partnered with Nez Perce Fisheries and held the event at Tunnel Pond just east of Orofino, ID. Hatchery volunteers and staff, along with local volunteers from the Clearwater Sheriff’s department, the Nez Perce Tribe, the Idaho Department of Fish and Game, the Nez Perce National Historic Park, Dworshak State Park, and the local school district helped bring this year’s event together.
Fishing opened at 8:00 for kids 14 and under. The Hatchery, Nez Perce Tribe, and local vendors provided poles, bait, nets and expertize to assist youth in their day of fishing. Each child was allowed three fish and no kid went home empty handed!
The morning was a little drizzly but by 10:30 or so the threat of rain subsided and folks started to really show up. Cool weather and overcast skies made for great fishing conditions so it didn’t take long to reach the 3 fish limit. But there was much more for the children to do besides fish! Volunteers were on hand to help kids make artful fishing flies, create Japanese fish prints, and make pine cone bird feeders. The Idaho Department of Fish and Game (IDFG) had their Cast a Carp game out so kids could perfect their casting skills. Dworshak State Park (IDPR) taught kids how to make bird feeders from recycled objects and provided supplies to make pine cone bird feeders. The Nez Perce National Historical Park (NPS) brought out a great display of historical fishing gear. Clearwater County Sheriff deputies brought out their jet skis and taught kids about water safety. The Nez Perce Tribe put up a teepee and the Hatchery taught kids how to make a “shore lunch” by cleaning and cooking each kid’s catch. The Guide Shop provided all the bait for the event and Ronatta’s Cakery provided cookies to go along with the shore lunch.
The event had 94 registered kids, about the same as last year’s event. Staff helped net fish, bait hooks, provide casting lessons, ice caught fish, and even gave fish cleaning lessons. It was a wonderful day and everyone had a great time.
This event would not have been possible without the commitment from our Hatchery volunteers, the Nez Perce Fisheries, the IDFG, the Clearwater County Sheriff Department, the NPS, IDPR , the Guide Shop, Ronatta’s Cakery, and funding from the Lower Snake River Compensation Plan.
Text and Photo's by Angela Feldmann