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Free Fishing Clinics

Free Sport Fishing Events are family fishing clinics where participants can fish for free; no freshwater fishing license or enrollment in the Recreational Marine Fishing Registry is required. In addition to fishing, participants can learn about fish identification, fishing equipment and techniques, fisheries management, angling ethics and aquatic ecology. In addition to the Free Sport Fishing Events, June 23-24, 2018 is Free Fishing Weekend in NY. February 18-19, 2017 and November 11, 2017 have also been newly designated as Free Fishing Days. During these days, anyone can fish the fresh or marine waters of NY and no license is required!

Fishing Takes Center Stage at New York State Fair

DEC's I FISH NY staff will be conducting a free fishing clinic at the New York State Fair from 10 am to 4 pm on August 27. All equipment and bait will be provided, and all participants will have an opportunity to win a fishing rod or other fun prizes. To top it off, any visitor to the fair on August 27 that displays a valid NY fishing or hunting license gets into the fair free. Anyone buying their license at the fair will automatically be entered to win a free lifetime pass to the NYS Fair. There will also be a bass tournament on Onondaga Lake featuring some of the best bass anglers in New York State. The weigh-in will be conducted at 12 PM at the New York Experience area on the State Fair Grounds.

Designated New York Free Fishing Events for 2017
Region/County Name of Event Location Date/Rain date Time Contact Contact Phone
2
New York
NY Harlem Meer Catch and Release Fishing Charles A. Dana Discovery Center (Harlem Meer), Manhattan April 1, 2017 - November 30, 2017 10:00 AM - 3:00 PM Sean Reynolds, Central Park Conservancy 212-860-1370
7
Onondaga
Webster Pond Free Fishing Clinic Webster Pond, Syracuse August 12, 2017 (Rain Date- August 19) 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM Chad Norton, Anglers Association of Onondaga 315-727-2922
4
Rensselaer
Learn to Fish! Schodack Island State Park (Hudson River), Schodack Landing August 19, 2017 3:00 PM - 5:00 PM Ashley Drum, NYS Parks, Recreation & Historic Preservation 518-732-0187
2
New York
LES Ecology Center Free Fishing Clinic Lower East Side Ecology Center (Pier 42), Manhattan August 20, 2017 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM Kaitlyn Parkins, Lower East Side Ecology Center 212-477-4022
4
Columbia
Drop In Hudson
(Must be over the age of 18 or accompanied by an adult
Ernest R. Lasher Memorial Park (Hudson River), Germantown August 23, 2017 11:00 AM - 2:00 PM Michelle Vedder-Drew, Columbia County Soil & Water Conservation District 518-267-3313
4
Rensselaer
Learn to Fish! Schodack Island State Park (Hudson River), Schodack Landing August 26, 2017 3:00 PM - 5:00 PM Ashley Drum, NYS Parks, Recreation & Historic Preservation 518-732-0187
7
Onondaga
State Fair Free Fishing Experience NYS Fairgrounds (New York Experience Area pond), Syracuse August 27, 2017 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM Joelle Ernst, NYS DEC 518-402-8891
1
Suffolk
Riverhead Snapper Clinic Peconic Riverfront Park (Peconic River), Riverhead August 29, 2017 5:30 PM - 7:30 PM Bob McCormack, NYS DEC 631-444-0283
4
Columbia
Drop In Hudson
(Must be over the age of 18 or accompanied by an adult)
Henry Hudson Waterfront Park (Hudson River), Hudson August 30, 2017 11:00 AM - 2:00 PM Michelle Vedder-Drew, Columbia County Soil & Water Conservation District 518-267-3313
2
Kings
Fish, Brew and BBQ Prospect Park, Brooklyn August 31, 2017 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM Steve Wong, Prospect Park Alliance 718-287-3400
2
New York
LES Ecology Center Free Fishing Clinic Lower East Side Ecology Center (East River at Grand Street), Manhattan September 15, 2017 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM Kaitlyn Parkins, Lower East Side Ecology Center 212-477-4022
1
Suffolk
Fire Island National Seashore Surfcasting Clinic Fire Island National Seashore, Smith Point September 16, 2017 11:00 AM - 2:00 PM Bob McCormack, NYS DEC 631-444-0283
3
Rockland
National Hunting and Fishing Day Congers Lake Memorial Park, Congers September 23, 2017 9:00 AM - 3:00 PM Ryan Coulter, NYS DEC 845-256-2204
2
New York
LES Ecology Center Free Fishing Clinic Lower East Side Ecology Center (East River at 10th Street), Manhattan September 30, 2017 12:00 PM - 2:00 PM Kaitlyn Parkins, Lower East Side Ecology Center 212-477-4022
1
Nassau
Family Fall Fishing Festival Hempstead Lake State Park (McDonald Pond), West Hempstead October 21, 2017 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM Bob McCormack, NYS DEC 631-444-0283