Fishing Classes

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Adult and two children fishing on edge of lake
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Free Hands-On Instruction

Fishing is a great way for everyone to have fun outdoors, learn about conservation, and make happy memories together. Our Discover Nature — Fishing Program helps Missourians gain the skills and confidence to go fishing on their own.

  • Classes are free.
  • No special equipment needed — we’ll provide all the gear.

More advanced classes can be found on the list below and on the Fishing Events page.

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Discover Nature–Fishing event
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Fishing Classes

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Registration period: December 15 - March 8
Date: Friday, March 8, 2024 4:00 pm - Friday, March 8, 2024 6:00 pm
Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

Fishing is a great way for kids and families to have fun outdoors, learn about conservation, and make happy memories. Our Discover Nature-Fishing program is a hands-on, four-part fishing instruction series that helps families gain the skills and confidence they need to go fishing on their own.

This program will cover the Discover Nature-Fishing Lessons 1 and 2, which are best to complete before Lessons 3 and 4 (hosted later). Participants will learn about fishing equipment, casting, rigging a fishing rod, baiting a hook, and proper fish handling. The Discover Nature-Fishing program is available for ages 7 and up. This program will take place at the Cape Girardeau Conservation Nature Center. Participants will not be required to have a valid fishing license for this program.

Registration period: December 15 - March 29
Date: Friday, March 29, 2024 4:00 pm - Friday, March 29, 2024 6:00 pm
Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

Fishing is a great way for kids and families to have fun outdoors, learn about conservation, and make happy memories. Our Discover Nature-Fishing program is a hands-on, four-part fishing instruction series that helps families gain the skills and confidence they need to go fishing on their own.

This program will cover lessons 3 and 4 which are best completed after lessons 1 and 2. Participants will learn about Missouri freshwater ecosystems, common fish, artificial lures, and the regulations regarding fishing in Missouri. The Discover Nature-Fishing program is available for ages 7 and up. We will host this program at the Cape Girardeau Conservation nature Center. Participants will not be required to have a valid fishing license and those who have already completed lessons 1 and 2 will receive fishing related rewards.

Registration period: February 26 - April 1
Date: Tuesday, April 2, 2024 5:00 pm - Tuesday, April 2, 2024 7:00 pm
Location: Rinquelin Trail Lake CA

Discover Nature - Fishing Lessons 1 & 2:

Lesson 1: “Equipment, Casting and Proper Fish Handling” combines instruction with hands-on fishing to teach young anglers and families basic fishing techniques and skills. Participants will learn how to properly and safely operate a spin cast fishing rod. Participants will also learn the parts of a fishing rod, how to fasten basic fishing tackle, and how to properly handle and release a fish.

Lesson 2: “How to Tie a Knot and Bait a Hook” combines instruction with hands-on fishing to teach young anglers and families intermediate fishing techniques and skills. Participants will learn to tie an improved clinch knot and how to properly secure bait on hooks.

Fishing equipment, instructors/coaches and bait/lures will be provided.

Ages 7 and above. All children ages 7-16 must be accompanied by an adult at all times.

Participants DO NOT need a fishing permit to fish during this program.

Each participant will need to register for this program individually on the Missouri Department of Conservation Discover Fishing website.

Please contact the Community Education Assistant, Lance Lewis with questions.

Lance.Lewis@mdc.mo.gov
Registration period: March 1 - April 4
Date: Saturday, April 6, 2024 9:00 am - Saturday, April 6, 2024 11:00 am
Location: Suson Park - Rearing Pond

*This lesson is required for anyone wanting to take Lessons 2-4*

Discover Nature Fishing Lesson 1

This first class includes instruction as well as hands-on fishing to teach young anglers and families basic fishing techniques and skills. Participants will learn parts of a fishing pole, how to properly and safely cast a spincast fishing pole, how to fasten basic fishing tackle, and how to properly handle and release a fish.

All fishing gear will be provided by the instructors. Please wear clothing and close-toed shoes suitable for outdoor and water activities. It is recommended that participants bring sunglasses, a water bottle, and sunscreen.

This class is for Children and Families of all ages! Children must be accompanied by an adult.

All participants who complete all 4 Discover Nature Fishing Lessons will go home with a free fishing reward to encourage fishing with the family.

To register your child, you may need to make a family account, or add them to an existing family account. You can also make you child their own, separate account.

Registration period: March 1 - April 7
Date: Tuesday, April 9, 2024 6:00 pm - Tuesday, April 9, 2024 8:00 pm
Location: St. Louis Regional Office/Busch Memorial CA

*This lesson is required for anyone wanting to take Lessons 2-4*

Discover Nature Fishing Lesson 1

This first class includes instruction as well as hands-on fishing to teach young anglers and families basic fishing techniques and skills. Participants will learn parts of a fishing pole, how to properly and safely cast a spincast fishing pole, how to fasten basic fishing tackle, and how to properly handle and release a fish.

All fishing gear will be provided by the instructors. Please wear clothing and close-toed shoes suitable for outdoor and water activities. It is recommended that participants bring sunglasses, a water bottle, and sunscreen.

This class is for Children and Families of all ages! Children must be accompanied by an adult.

All participants who complete all 4 Discover Nature Fishing Lessons will go home with a free fishing reward to encourage fishing with the family.

To register your child, you may need to make a family account, or add them to an existing family account. You can also make you child their own, separate account.

Registration period: March 1 - April 9
Date: Thursday, April 11, 2024 6:00 pm - Thursday, April 11, 2024 8:00 pm
Location: Forest Park Hatchery

*This lesson is required for anyone wanting to take Lessons 2-4*

Discover Nature Fishing Lesson 1

This first class includes instruction as well as hands-on fishing to teach young anglers and families basic fishing techniques and skills. Participants will learn parts of a fishing pole, how to properly and safely cast a spincast fishing pole, how to fasten basic fishing tackle, and how to properly handle and release a fish.

All fishing gear will be provided by the instructors. Please wear clothing and close-toed shoes suitable for outdoor and water activities. It is recommended that participants bring sunglasses, a water bottle, and sunscreen.

This class is for Children and Families of all ages! Children must be accompanied by an adult.

All participants who complete all 4 Discover Nature Fishing Lessons will go home with a free fishing reward to encourage fishing with the family.

To register your child, you may need to make a family account, or add them to an existing family account. You can also make you child their own, separate account.

Registration period: March 1 - April 11
Date: Saturday, April 13, 2024 9:00 am - Saturday, April 13, 2024 11:00 am
Location: Suson Park - Rearing Pond

*Discover Nature Fishing Lesson 1 is required before attending this program*

Discover Nature Fishing Lesson 2

Participants will learn intermediate fishing techniques and skills. Participants will be taught how to tie an improved clinch knot and how to properly secure a variety of baits to various types of hooks.

All fishing gear will be provided by the instructors. Please wear clothing and close-toed shoes suitable for outdoor and water activities. It is recommended that participants bring sunglasses, a water bottle, and sunscreen.

This class is for Children and Families of all ages! Children must be accompanied by an adult.

All participants who complete all 4 Discover Nature Fishing Lessons will go home with a free fishing reward to encourage fishing with the family.

To register your child, you may need to make a family account, or add them to an existing family account. You can also make you child their own, separate account.

Registration period: March 1 - April 14
Date: Tuesday, April 16, 2024 6:00 pm - Tuesday, April 16, 2024 8:00 pm
Location: St. Louis Regional Office/Busch Memorial CA

*Discover Nature Fishing Lesson 1 is required before attending this program*

Discover Nature Fishing Lesson 2

Participants will learn intermediate fishing techniques and skills. Participants will be taught how to tie an improved clinch knot and how to properly secure a variety of baits to various types of hooks.

All fishing gear will be provided by the instructors. Please wear clothing and close-toed shoes suitable for outdoor and water activities. It is recommended that participants bring sunglasses, a water bottle, and sunscreen.

This class is for Children and Families of all ages! Children must be accompanied by an adult.

All participants who complete all 4 Discover Nature Fishing Lessons will go home with a free fishing reward to encourage fishing with the family.

To register your child, you may need to make a family account, or add them to an existing family account. You can also make you child their own, separate account.

Registration period: March 1 - April 16
Date: Thursday, April 18, 2024 6:00 pm - Thursday, April 18, 2024 8:00 pm
Location: Forest Park Hatchery

*Discover Nature Fishing Lesson 1 is required before attending this program*

Discover Nature Fishing Lesson 2

Participants will learn intermediate fishing techniques and skills. Participants will be taught how to tie an improved clinch knot and how to properly secure a variety of baits to various types of hooks.

All fishing gear will be provided by the instructors. Please wear clothing and close-toed shoes suitable for outdoor and water activities. It is recommended that participants bring sunglasses, a water bottle, and sunscreen.

This class is for Children and Families of all ages! Children must be accompanied by an adult.

All participants who complete all 4 Discover Nature Fishing Lessons will go home with a free fishing reward to encourage fishing with the family.

To register your child, you may need to make a family account, or add them to an existing family account. You can also make you child their own, separate account.

Registration period: March 2 - April 19
Date: Friday, April 19, 2024 5:00 pm - Friday, April 19, 2024 7:00 pm
Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

Fishing is a great way for kids and families to have fun outdoors, learn about conservation, and make happy memories. Our Discover Nature-Fishing program is a hands-on, four-part fishing instruction series that helps families gain the skills and confidence they need to go fishing on their own.

This program will cover the Discover Nature-Fishing Lessons 1 and 2, which are best to complete before Lessons 3 and 4 (hosted later). Participants will learn about fishing equipment, casting, rigging a fishing rod, baiting a hook, and proper fish handling. The Discover Nature-Fishing program is available for ages 7 and up. This program will take place at the Cape Girardeau Conservation Nature Center. Participants will not be required to have a valid fishing license for this program.