This year Father’s Day and National Fish Day fall on the same day: Sunday 18 June.
Dads and families interested in fishing or the outdoors but haven’t made fishing or outdoor activities a priority can find free or discounted events and programs at local parks as outdoor recreation destinations come up with unique ways to celebrate Father’s Day.
Some state conservation organizations host free fishing day events over Father’s Day weekend and National Go Fishing Day.
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Here are four states hosting free fishing days in time for the holiday weekend — plus one state that has announced a no-fishing event sure to inspire explorers no matter where a dad lives.
Need an idea for a Father’s Day outing? Why not try fishing or spend a day out in nature? Get inspired by five states that host unique events for aspiring anglers and hikers. (iStock)
Illinois: Free Fishing on Father’s Day Weekend
The state of Illinois hosts its annual “Free Fishing Days” over Father’s Day weekend, allowing dads and families to fish without a license or stamp.
The temporary program will run from Friday, June 16 to Sunday, June 18, according to the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR).
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Typically, Illinois residents require a fishing license, salmon seal, or domestic trout seal to catch fish in the Prairie State.
Illinois’ annual four-day “Free Fishing Days” event takes place from Friday, June 16 to Sunday, June 18, just in time for Father’s Day weekend. (iStock)
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In honor of Father’s Day, there are special events at various recreation spots.
For example, the Will County Monee Reservoir Visitor Center offers dads a free container of bait and a small gift, along with free fishing rod rentals for visitors to the reservoir between 6 a.m. and 7 p.m.
Montana: License-Free Fishing for Dads and Families
Fishing is free for all Montana residents from Saturday, June 17 to Sunday, June 18, in honor of Father’s Day.
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This Wednesday, the Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks Department (MFWP) announced that “all aspiring anglers” will be allowed to fish without a license during Father’s Day weekend.
Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks will allow dads and families to fish without a permit from Saturday, June 17 to Sunday, June 18, but they must comply with aquatic invasive species (AIS) inspection stations if fishing from a family-owned watercraft. (iStock)
All other fishing rules and regulations are in effect and must be followed, according to the MFWP.
State fishing regulations, water body restrictions, and safety guidelines can be found at fwp.mt.gov.
Ohio: license-free fishing in time for Father’s Day
The state of Ohio is bringing back its annual two-day “Free Fishing Days” in time for Father’s Day weekend.
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Ohio residents can catch fish on Saturday, June 17 and Sunday, June 18 without having to purchase a permit on those days, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR).
Ohio’s annual two-day “Free Fishing Days” event runs from Saturday, June 17 to Sunday, June 18, just in time for Father’s Day weekend. (iStock)
“During these two days, all size and luggage limits apply,” the ODNR wrote in its announcement about the event.
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New anglers who want to fish with dad or try their luck with the outdoor activity can learn more about state fishing regulations at ohiodnr.gov.
South Dakota: Free entry to state parks and permit-free fishing for Father’s Day
South Dakota residents can enter state parks for free and fish without a permit on Father’s Day, Sunday, June 18.
Dads and families in South Dakota will have the chance to fish without a license on Sunday, June 18 in honor of Father’s Day. (iStock)
“Join us at the park to celebrate Father’s Day with free fishing and park entry. No fishing license required. Regulations and limits still apply,” the South Dakota Game, Fish & Parks (SDGFP) wrote in an announcement of the event.
The SDGFP will provide free fishing rods and bait to Father’s Day celebrations visiting Palisades State Park in Minnehaha County.
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However, only a limited number will be available.
State fishing regulations can be found at gfp.sd.gov.
North Dakota: Free “Father’s Day Hike” at Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park
North Dakota dads and families who are within range or willing to travel to Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park in Morton County can participate in a free “Father’s Day Hike” event that is also a “Scavenger Clue Hunt,” according to an announcement. of the event issued by the North Dakota Parks & Recreation (NDPR).
The Father’s Day walk starts on Sunday 18 June at 10 a.m
North Dakota Parks & Recreation officials are organizing a scavenger hunt-focused “Father’s Day Hike” at Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park. (iStock)
Participants will be asked to find hidden treasures referenced in the event flyers, the announcement said.
“Each location will contain a clue for you to decipher,” the NDPR wrote of the upcoming event.
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Dads who complete the walk and return a collected gold coin to the park commissioner are eligible for a 10% discount on any soft drink purchase at the Coffee Bar, including coffee, tea, lemonade or slushies.
Bottles are excluded from the discount.
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Participants of the Father’s Day Walk should also be aware that while the event is free and open to the public, Fort Abraham Lincoln State Park still requires a vehicle permit to enter.
Cortney Moore is an associate lifestyle writer on Fox News Digital’s Lifestyle team.