Editor’s Log: 2nd Annual Women’s Fishing Expo - The Fisherman

Editor’s Log: 2nd Annual Women’s Fishing Expo

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation (OPRHP) will hold the second annual Women’s Fishing Expo at Connetquot River State Park Preserve on Saturday, September 25, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Fishing participation has increased dramatically during Covid and women are making up in increasingly larger segment of new anglers.

“Women and girls are a vital and fast-growing part of New York’s angling and outdoor recreation community, and the Long Island Women’s Fishing Expo connects participants to the skills and knowledge necessary to have a successful and enjoyable fishing experience, helping to inspire the next generation of anglers,” according to DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos.

The first Women’s Fishing Expo held at Belmont Lake State Park was a huge success. We attended the event and it was encouraging to see the enthusiasm displayed by those women who attended the event. Even better were the women involved in sharing their own knowledge and helping teach those being introduced to fishing for the first time. “Fishing is an enjoyable way to interact with the amazing natural surroundings of Long Island and New York State throughout the year,” State Parks Commissioner Erik Kulleseid said. “I thank our partners at DEC for helping introduce more women to this delightful and lifelong sport.”

“DEC is excited to bring back this wonderful program,” DEC Acting Regional Director Merlange Genece said. “Long Island has fantastic areas for fly-fishing and we are excited to introduce this rewarding activity to women who may not have had the opportunity to cast a line.”

The Women’s Fishing Expo will provide hands-on instruction and experiential learning in a fun and supportive environment. This event will be run primarily by women anglers and fisheries professionals and includes networking opportunities for women-owned businesses and fishing clubs. Everyone is welcome to attend, although the event’s primary focus is introducing women and girls to fishing.

Expo activities begin at 10 a.m., on Saturday, September 25, and are free of charge. A vehicle use fee of $8 will be in effect. Parking is free for Empire Passport holders. The 2021 Empire Passport can be purchased for $80 at State Parks offices, or online at the NYS Parks website (leaves DEC’s website).

Participants will learn about fishing opportunities on Long Island and around the state, basic and intermediate fishing skills, basic knots, fly-tying demonstrations, fly-casting instruction, and fisheries management. The event includes a trout hatchery tour, marine fishing information, and free fly fishing on the renowned Connetquot River. Fly casting and fly fishing are limited to participants 14 and older.

According to the most recent National Survey of Fishing, Hunting and Wildlife-Associated Recreation conducted by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, women make up more than 25 percent of all anglers, a number that has increased over the last several decades. The Women’s Fishing Expo coincides with National Hunting and Fishing Day, which is designated as a Free Fishing Day in New York State, so the freshwater fishing license requirement for anglers ages 16 and older is suspended statewide.

This is a rain or shine event. Space is limited and pre-registration is required. For more information or to register, call the DEC’s I FISH NY Program at (631) 444-0283, or email fwfish1@dec.ny.gov with the subject title ‘Women’s Fishing Expo.’

For information about freshwater fishing on Long Island, call the DEC Bureau of Fisheries at 631-444-0280, e-mail fwfish1@dec.ny.gov, or visit DEC’s website.

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