The smiles on their faces tells you everything you need to know! The Kids Fun Fishing Day at Rutledge-Wilson Farm Park was a huge success! The Springfield-Greene County Park Board partnered with the Missouri Department of Conservation for the 41st annual event.

“Living in the Ozarks it’s easy to imagine that all kids know to fish, but that’s not true,” says Jenny Fillmer-Edwards, public information administrator for the Springfield-Greene County Park Board. For those of us who were raised with a fishing pole in our hands it’s hard to imagine life without fishing. For many kids that’s not their reality and this Saturday’s event offered the chance for kids, and parents alike, to enjoy a few hours of fishing in the parks fully stocked pond.

Getting kids into the fishing game early in life is beneficial in so many ways. First, fishing is a hobby you can enjoy for nearly your whole life, second, it’s a great family activity, plus it gets everyone off those tiny screens and focused on the pure pleasure that is “reelin’em in”!

If you missed this year’s event, no worries. Summer’s just getting started and there are so many great places to take your kids fishing in The Ozarks. Many regional landowners will allow fishing in their ponds. Most times it just takes a knock on the door and asking, especially if you’re planning to practice “catch-n-release.” Again, another cool thing about fishing is that you can have the fun of catching a fish, get a quick photo, and then toss it back to be caught again another day.

If you can’t find a pond, they are plenty of rivers and streams, many of which are accessible by automobile. The Missouri Stream Team map is a great place to start. They are literally dozens of locations in and around Springfield. Click the link to find an access location near you.  

Take your kids fishing. You’ll make memories that will last a lifetime. You just may find yourself having as much, if not more fun, than they do!