Take a Kid Fishing Event postponed until 2021

A Take A Kid Fishing participant catches a fish with the help of a guide during the 2019 event on Lake Bemidji. (Jillian Gandsey | Bemidji Pioneer)

BEMIDJI -- As we inch closer and closer to warmer weather, it’s becoming evident that summertime event staples in Bemidji are also at risk of cancellation or postponement due to the coronavirus pandemic.

It was announced earlier this week that the 2020 Take a Kid Fishing Event, originally scheduled to be held on June 10, had been postponed until the following year.

This would have been the event’s 34th consecutive year.

“We regret that the current circumstances make our event difficult, and for the safety of the volunteer guides and the children that attend our event, it is in the best interest to postpone our event until 2021,” Christina Regas, a committee member, said in a press release.

In a typical Take a Kid Fishing Event, 80 to 100 local anglers serve as guides and volunteers, donating their time, equipment, and knowledge for the purpose of introducing community-area children to the sport of fishing.


The children, accompanied by their guides, spend an afternoon on various area lakes, learning and practicing the angling sport, which is later concluded with a fish fry at Lake Bemidji State Park. The dinner serves as a no-cost treat to both the children and their parents that evening.

Additionally, guides are asked to nominate a standout young angler for a fishing license -- as two are awarded each year.

As many as 200 children have participated in a single Take a Kid Fishing Event, and over 5,000 area youths have been directly influenced by it, the event’s website said.

“We are very proud of our program and truly believe that it is the highest quality of its kind,” the event’s committee said in a statement on its website. “Organizations from other communities, as far away as Indiana, have recently developed similar fishing programs for kids, after consulting with our committee.”

Yet despite the event’s postponement, committee members said they urge anglers in the community to continue introducing the sport to children.

Also in the coming months, they said plan to have their signature Take a Kid Fishing Ice Fishhouse ready for raffle tickets.

“(We) encourage all local avid fishermen and women to teach the great sport of fishing to new youth this summer by taking a child out fishing,” Regas said.

To stay updated with the event’s activities, go to the Bemidji Area Take a Kid Fishing Facebook page or visit its website at .

Bria Barton covers travel and tourism for Forum News Service and is based at the Bemidji Pioneer. A South Carolina native and USC grad, she can be found exploring Minnesota’s abundance of towns, food and culture. Follow her on Instagram @briabarton.
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