This National Fishing & Boating Week, take the opportunity to get outside with your family and friends for a relaxed bout of fishing or exhiliterating boating adventure. Never fished before? No worries. With a little help from Take Me Fishing and Vamos A Pescar, we'll break down the basics for you -- and hopefully convince you to take a fishing trip of your own this summer!
Get the scoop on why (and how) you and your family should be fishing:
1. It's Good For You...
In 2012, 47 million Americans participated in fishing -- making for a staggering one billion fishing outtings! And you thought only old white men enjoyed fishing, right?
Nope! Over 41% of new fishing participants were women -- and more and more Latinos are embracing the sport. The truth is fishing is fun, a great way to connect with family, and an environmentally conscious sport.
2. ...And It's Good For Your Kids!
Fishing gets your kids off the computer and into the great outdoors -- and how can you argue with that? Fishing also helps them get involved with something from a young age, while teaching them valuable skills and creating memories that will last a lifetime.
Take Me Fishing offers some great tips for fishing with little ones and older children -- including what gear to include for smaller bodies and advice for keeping them entertained and happy. You can even download fun treats, such as a certificate that celebrates your kids' first catch! Catching their first fish is an experience they will never forget -- and a day parents will proudly remember forever!
You and your family can also check out one of the many community events sponsored by Radio Disney and Take Me Fishing. All summer long, children can attend one of these nationwide events to get a feel for what it's like to cast a reel -- all from the comfort of dry land! Take a peek at the calendar, and find out when you and your family can get in on the fun!
3. It's Easy Access...
We convinced you to go fishing? Great! Now you're probably wondering: Where in the world can I even fish near me?
Did you know that over 90 percent of Americans live within an hour's drive of navigable water? Take Me Fishing offers a handy map, which can help you locate fishing destinations close to you. The organization has also compiled a list of the Top 100 Family Fishing Spots in America. These 100 destinations are all part of a state or city park with family-friendly amenities such as parking, bathrooms, playgrounds, boat ramps, and more. Plus, they are guaranteed to be full of great fish -- and they all come highly recommended by other anglers!
4. ...And Perfect For Beginners!
Never been fishing before? Don't be scared! Vamos A Pescar offers tips in English and Spanish for first-time fishers, including details on how to get a license, how to fish, where to fish and when to fish.
Beginners might want to consider a guided excursion with your family. A helpful fishing guide will drive the boat, provide fishing equipment, and teach you and your family how to bait your hooks, cast your reels and catch those fish! Guided excursions can be found throughout the country, and even in places like Disney World -- which offers both guided tours and dockside fishing!
5. It's Good For The Environment...
Anglers and boaters (like you!) help support and protect aquatic life simply by paying for fishing licenses, boat registrations, fishing gear and boat fuel. Yep -- it’s true: 100% of the funds from fishing licenses goes directly towards conservation.
What does that mean? Basically, almost every dollar you spend on fishing is used by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service to pay for habitat management, education, fish surveys and research, stocking lakes with fish, and providing access to water where you can boat and fish. By fishing, you’re directly impacting and improving the environment around you! How awesome is that? It’s conservation through participation.
6. ...And Will Inspire You To Appreciate The Great Outdoors More!
Fishing is often referred to as the "gateway" activity that inspires participants to get out and enjoy the outdoors! In 2012, over 75% of fishing participants also participated in other outdoor activities -- such as running, jogging, trail running, bicycling, camping, and hiking. It's no secret that spending time outdoors has innumerable positive benefits on your physical, mental and social health -- so what are you waiting for?
7. Not Sure Where To Begin?
Further questions? Latino families can get details (in English and Spanish!) on where to fish, how to fish, and what you need for a fishing excursion with the family at the official Vamos A Pescar website. If you're planning a Disney World vacation, consider adding a fishing adventure to your trip. Get the details at Disney Go.