Ohio free fishing weekend scheduled for May 4th and 5th - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Ohio free fishing weekend scheduled for May 4th and 5th

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COLUMBUS, Ohio -

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Wildlife announced Thursday that May 4-5 will be Ohio's free fishing weekend, when Ohio residents may fish for free in any of Ohio's public waters, including Lake Erie and the Ohio River.

It is the only weekend all year when those 16 years old or older are not required to obtain a fishing license to fish in the state's public waters.

"Ohio has world-class fishing, and our free fishing weekend is a great opportunity to experience what the state has to offer," Ohio Governor Mike DeWine said. "I invite Ohioans to take some time to get outside with family and friends to enjoy our wonderful natural resources."

The Division of Wildlife's six fish hatcheries stocked more than 44 million sport fish in public waters in 2018, including walleye, saugeye, steelhead, rainbow trout, brown trout, muskellunge, channel catfish, blue catfish and hybrid striped bass.

There are an estimated 1.3 million anglers, or people who fish with a rod and line, in Ohio.

The Free Fishing Days weekend offers Ohioans of all ages the chance to experience the fun of catching a fish. Here are some helpful tips for taking a youngster out fishing:

Keep the trip simple by considering a child's age and skill level.

Choose a pond, lake or stream where children will be able to easily catch a few fish.

Use live bait to increase the chance of catching a fish. Live bait is also more interesting for children.

Bring a camera and snacks.

Be patient – plan on spending time untangling lines, baiting hooks, landing fish and taking pictures.

Most of all, keep the trip fun.

Anglers 16 years and older are required to have a valid fishing license to take fish, frogs or turtles from Ohio waters when not fishing on Ohio's free fishing weekend. Fishing licenses are available from participating agents and at wildohio.gov.

Ohio State Parks is also offering a camping discount during Ohio's Free Fishing Days. Visitors can receive a 20 percent discount on campsites May 3-4 by using the promotion code 19ANGLER. Make a reservation by going to this website or calling 866-OHIOPARKS (866-644-6727).

The mission of the Division of Wildlife is to conserve and improve fish and wildlife resources and their habitats for sustainable use and appreciation by all. Visit wildohio.gov to find out more.

ODNR ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR website here.

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