Kids Fish Day slated for Wednesday

Kids Fish Day is put on by the Manistee County Sportfishing Association, and brings 150 children out to Man Made Lake for a day of fishing. (File Photo)

Kids Fish Day is put on by the Manistee County Sportfishing Association, and brings 150 children out to Man Made Lake for a day of fishing. (File Photo)

MANISTEE — With warm summer weather in full force, there are plenty of activities to be found in Manistee to get kids outside and enjoying time in the sun.

An event that stands out to promote this is Kids Fish Day, taking place at Man Made Lake on the north side of Manistee. The competition will be held from 9 to 11 a.m. on Wednesday. In case of inclement weather, the event will be moved to the following day.

The competition is sponsored by the Manistee County Sportfishing Association, and is open to all kids 12 and under. There is no entry form or fee required to participate. An adult must accompany children attending the event, and children are encouraged to wear life preservers.

Craig Kent, the organizer of this event, said that the competition brings about 150 kids to the lake, and they do not need to have experience to join.

“It gives many children the opportunity to get out and try fishing if they’ve never tried, or fish more if they have had some exposure already,” he said. “With our loaner rods-and-reels, they don’t even have to have their own equipment. We still make sure they can get out for the day.”

Kids Fish Day will be held at Man Made Lake on Wednesday, a free competition open to children 12 and under. (File Photo)

Kids Fish Day will be held at Man Made Lake on Wednesday, a free competition open to children 12 and under. (File Photo)

Kent said that this event continues to be one of the most popular children’s events of the summer. He has organized this event for four years, although this event has been held for around 20 years.

“I was on the board of directors for the MCSA, and one of our board members who ran the event was looking to pass the baton due to his busy schedule. I took it over from there,” he explained.

In addition to the MCSA sponsoring the competition, Manistee’s chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation will contribute prizes, including the three grand prize fishing rods and 50 additional rods-and-reels. Free T-shirts will be provided to all children who participate.

There will also be a free shuttle service, as the parking by Man Made Lake is limited. The service will be provided by Dial-A-Ride, and will start at 8:30 a.m. in the parking lot of St. Mary’s Church.

Kent said that all children who participate are entered in the same division, and the grand prizes will go to the top three catches, determined by length of the fish.

“We have volunteers going around the lake measuring fish throughout the competition, and the number will be written on cards. At the end, the cards are handed in and we find the winners,” he added.

Kent said that the biggest takeaway is that this event continues to be a welcoming way to introduce children to the outdoor sports that Manistee is so renowned for.

“It’s such a great experience, and there is something for every child,” he said. “It starts them out young with a positive feeling about fishing and the outdoors.”

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