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For Immediate Release June 2, 2003

"Passport to Fishing" Teaches Fishing and Fun

CLACKAMAS - Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife will host a free trout fishing clinic for children 12 and under on Saturday, June 7 at Bonneville Hatchery as part of Free Fishing Weekend activities. The clinic runs from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., but participants must register by 1 p.m. at the facility located 40 miles east of Portland in the Columbia
River Gorge.

"Some changes this year will make the event even more fun than past years," said Jennell Hoehne, event coordinator. Kids will fish in one-half hour rotations with help from ODFW employees and volunteers to ease crowding and give everyone a good opportunity to catch some of the 2400 fish stocked specifically for the event.

Children receive a passport to be stamped at each learning station leading up to the fishing area at Mitchell Creek on the hatchery grounds. Station activities include responsible angling and river care, casting practice, fish identification, and fishing for up to two trout. Loaner poles, bait and a bag of ice to take fish home are provided. Use of personal equipment is not allowed. Donors provide pop and chips for all and some prizes.

"This is a fun atmosphere to learn fishing skills that can be used at numerous lakes in the metro area where trout are stocked throughout the year," said Kathy Shinn, spokesperson for the event. Participants receive a "goody bag," a list of stocked lakes and a trout stocking schedule. Those who catch their first trout receive a "First Fish Certificate."

Co-sponsors of the event, now in its tenth year, include Cascade Locks Lions Club, Multnomah Anglers and Hunters Club, Association of Northwest Steelheaders, Oregon Bass and Panfish Club, Oregon State Police, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

To reach Bonneville Hatchery from Portland, take I-84 East to Exit 40 and follow the signs to the hatchery. From Hood River, take I-84 west to Exit 40. ODFW reminds anglers that fishing is permitted at Bonneville Hatchery during the Saturday clinic hours only. For more information on Free Fishing Weekend events in northwest Oregon, call
503-657-2000 Ext. 228 or visit the ODFW website at www.dfw.state.or.us
 
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