SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) wants to encourage families and children to wet a line this month. IDNR Director Marc Miller is declaring September 19, 2009 as a “Free Fishing Day” at state parks throughout Illinois.
Allowing children and adults to fish without a fishing license within the boundaries of state parks on September 19 is part of the celebration of “It’s Our River Day.” The day will highlight Illinois’ rivers and streams through conservation, education and recreation at over 50 events throughout the state
“We hope events like ‘It’s Our River Day’ will spark interest in our youth and introduce a new generation to the joy of fishing and the beauty of our state parks,” said Director Miller. “This is a great opportunity for mom and dad or grandma and grandpa to take their kids or grandkids fishing without having to pay for and obtain a fishing license for a day.”
The “Free Fishing Day” on September 19 applies to both Illinois residents and non-residents. Free fishing on that day will only be allowed within the boundaries of Illinois state parks, natural areas and wildlife areas where public fishing opportunities are available. For a list of state sites, visit the IDNR website at www.dnr.state.il.us. The “Free Fishing Day” waiver of fishing license requirements on September 19 will not include fishing on the Illinois waters of Lake Michigan or on river positions outside of Illinois state park boundaries.
IDNR also holds annual “Free Fishing Days” events each June throughout Illinois.