ST. JAMES, Mo. – Young anglers will have opportunities to catch fish and learn about fishing at Maramec Spring Hatchery’s Kids’ Fishing Day on May 17 in St. James. This Kids’ Free Fishing Day is hosted by the Missouri Department of Conservation, the Maramec Spring Trout Fisherman’s Association, and the James Foundation.
At Kids’ Fishing Day, the entire upper portion of the spring branch will be reserved for kids 15 years and under. Rainbow trout will be stocked and restocked throughout the day to help ensure that all youths have an enjoyable time. Free tags will be available for pick up on May 16 and May 17. Fishing will begin at 6:30 a.m. and end at 8:15 p.m., rain or shine.
Children are encouraged to bring their own fishing equipment. Parents are welcome to help the kids, but only one pole may be used between the helper and the child. Children will also have the opportunity to participate in fly fishing, a casting contest, critter stamping and other activities. Goodie bags will be handed out to participants and free hot dogs and soda will be available for lunch. Fishing contests will take place throughout the day and there will be drawings for door prizes. Individuals must be present to win.
Maramec Spring Park in St. James is home to one of four trout parks in the state of Missouri. Privately owned and operated by the James Foundation, the park’s fishery is administered by the Missouri Department of Conservation. The hatchery produces about 100,000 trout a year, and all are stocked in Maramec Spring Park. Montauk Hatchery hauls in an additional 40,000 trout each year. The fish are stocked at a rate of 2.25 fish per tag sold and are at least 12 inches in length.
Maramec Spring Park is located 6 miles east of St. James, Mo on Highway 8. For more information or to volunteer to help at this fun and free event, call 573-265-7801. For information on other fishing and outdoor events throughout Missouri, go online to mdc.mo.gov.