Fishing Events Thrill Everyone
Taking home a fish is a unique way to celebrate

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At Winthrop National Fish Hatchery's annual Kids Fishing Day event, children of all ages can catch trout-- sometimes huge ones!

In a world where virtual activities claim an awful lot of attention, still nothing beats a wriggling, live, slimy, glittering fish on the end of a line. The Methow Valley National Fishing and Boating Day Celebration (also called Winthrop Kids Fishing Day) draws people from the Methow Valley, and also from cities and towns throughout the region, to Winthrop National Fish Hatchery. One girl photographed in 2016 insists on returning every year all the way from Everett, WA. Her first fish was nearly as long as she was tall.

This visitor to the Kids Fishing Day event at Winthrop National Fish Hatchery had such a great time on her first visit that she came back year after year.

While fishing is the centerpiece and primary draw, local non-profits, volunteer groups, and agencies set up booths and lead educational activities focused on fish and water. Visitors in 2019 could try rolling programmable spheres along a painted river to imitate migration, guided by North Central Regional Library staff; practice casting with fly rods; listen to fish stories read inside an inflatable salmon tent; sample smoked salmon, learn about watersheds and recycling, and examine live macroinvertebrates.

Josh Homer hands a girl her rainbow trout after helping her bring it to shore.

A different event happens at Entiat National Fish Hatchery in May and June. Manager Craig Chisam designed a program with the Entiat School that brings four grades out to the hatchery, each on its own day. Classes are broken into smaller groups and rotate between three stations: archery, ecology, and fishing. At the fishing pond, massive rainbow trout await: the biggest catch one year was over fifteen pounds! The fish are cleaned and packed on ice for students to take home to their families, sharing their experience in a direct, tangible way. As with all the events run at our hatcheries, this one involves volunteers: for example, from Trout Unlimited, whose members help teach fly-fishing skills and show the kids how to clean their trout.

A student of Entiat School is proud of the rainbow fish volunteers from Trout Unlimited are helping him clean.

There’s no better way to celebrate summer than by taking kids fishing. Look for opportunities in your area, and be sure you know the regulations before you go.

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Fish hatcheries
Special events

Recreational Activities