Youth Education Report

by Greg Kucharewski
(from Jersey Coast Anglers Association May 2017 Newsletter)
National Fishing & Boating Week
June 4 – 12, 2017

NF&BW Free Fishing Days in New Jersey are June and October, 2017. The first FREE day in NJ is on June 10, 2017. This day is part of the National Fishing and Boating Week which highlights the importance of recreational boating and fishing to enhance peoples' quality of life and to preserve our country's natural beauty. The second Free Fishing Day will occur after fall trout stocking, October 21, 2017 and it brings attention to this great fishing opportunity.

During the two Free fishing days, residents and non-residents may fish New Jersey’s public fresh waters without a license or trout stamp. All other regulations, including size and daily catch limits, remain in effect.

Residents and non-residents may fish the public waters of New Jersey without a license or trout Stamp. All other regulations apply. For those anglers just starting out, the Division of Fish and Wildlife offers many programs and classes to advance from beginner to expert. The Pequest State Trout Hatchery in Oxford, Warren County offers free fishing programs. Pequest offers a Natural Resource Education Center with a variety of exhibits and displays on wildlife, a butterfly garden, picnic areas and hiking trails. There is also a handicapped-accessible fishing site along the Pequest River. Last year the JCAA Youth Education Committee coordinated fishing and aquatic education programs for the week-long celebration of National Fishing Week. Please contact the JCAA Youth Education Committee and let us know how many National Fishing Week participants supported your program and we will add it to our JCAA report.

Come and Celebrate the 26th GSFT Anniversary

Get ready to enter the largest surf-fishing tournament along the Jersey Shore. This year, it will be bigger and better than ever. The 26th Anniversary of the Governor’s Surf Fishing Tournament will be on Sunday, May 21, 2017. Don’t miss a day of family fun! Pick up a brochure about the tournament at Island Beach State Park or at your favorite tackle dealer. This year sponsors of the tournament are adding a surf fishing opportunity for youngsters attending NJ high schools and other angling youth groups. The new High School Team Competition will add new excitement for high school students fishing the tournament. The GSFT committee members feel the expanded opportunity for youth angling groups to fish the GSFT will create more excitement and recognition for young anglers on tournament day.

Remember admission to the park is FREE for the tournament. We would like to remind our physically challenged anglers that there is an area at OBA 1 with beach wheelchairs available. The JCAA Youth Education Committee is helping novice and physically challenged anglers at the Governor's Surf Fishing Tournament. This year the World Jeep – Chrysler – Dodge - Ram, Shrewsbury, NJ will assist physically challenged anglers with a NEW 4x4 VIP vehicle to transport anglers that will be fishing the reserved area in front of OBA 1. Team World Jeep Chrysler will also be available to answer questions about 4x4 beach maintenance and fluids.

Members of the Vietnam Veterans of America (Chapter 12) and volunteer anglers from various fishing clubs will also assist physically challenged anglers. If you know a disabled veteran or angler that would like to fish the tournament, please phone Greg K at 732-785-9278 or email gkucharews@jcaa.org.

2016 NJ HOFNOD Youth Fishing Challenge

The Hooked on Fishing - Not on Drugs Program's Youth Fishing Challenge is a statewide event to promote fishing among youths and their families. The Youth Fishing Challenge will be held on the first of the state's two Free Fishing Days, Saturday, June 10, when no license is required to fish regardless of age.

Registered youth participants will be eligible to receive prizes for the fish they catch during the event. Youths must be present at the conclusion of the event to be awarded prizes. Those who are lucky enough to catch a trout tagged as part of the "Hook-A-Winner" Program will receive a special prize following the event.

If you are working with a NJ HOFNOD youth fishing group get ready for Saturday, June 10th NJ Youth Fishing Challenge. The object is to get youngsters fishing, so please consider how you might like to get kids hooked on fishing. If you would like to volunteer time with a NJ HOFNOD group to support the NJ Youth Fishing Challenge Day, Contact Liz Jackson for details: NJ DEP Division of Fish & Wildlife, Hooked on Fishing - Not on Drugs, 605 Pequest Road, Oxford, NJ 07683, 908-637-4125 x122, or website.

West Marine BlueFuture Grant

The JCAA Youth Education Committee is applying for the West Marine BlueFuture Fall Grant. If you are a Non-profit organization, please consider applying for the West Marine BlueFuture grant. All nonprofit 501C3 organizations are encouraged to apply, community-based organizations that teach sailing, powerboating, fishing or boatbuilding skills; foster aquatic sustainability and conservation practices; and encourage learning in the marine sciences. West Marine began accepting grant applications during the Spring and Fall of 2017.

Play Hook-E from PTSD

Veterans interested in learning about fishing and relaxing in the outdoors can attend free monthly Play HOOK-e from PTSD fishing workshops. For more information about the schedule, please contact Greg Kucharewski at 732-785-9278 or send an email to gkucharews@jcaa.org.

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