Grab your gear: It’s Free Fishing Weekend in Michigan

MICHIGAN  --  Michigan's annual winter Free Fishing Weekend is being held Saturday and Sunday.

People fishing will not need a license during the two days, but all fishing regulations still apply.

Hunter Abbott, 13, of Belmont he enjoys ice fishing with his family every year, sometimes even bringing home some fish for dinner.

Since it's one of Michigan's Free Fishing Weekends, Abbott encourages people who don't typically fish or don't have a fishing license to take advantage of this opportunity by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources.

“You get to try something new," said Abbott. "I like coming outside, it’s fun."

If you're 17 years old or older, you would normally need a fishing license to fish in our state, but not this weekend.

“It’s just good to get new people out," said Gerald Saporito of Vicksburg. "I find fishing and being in the outdoors very addicting. It’s my place to relax and reflect on things."

Saporito recommended people new at fishing to give it a try, it may become your new hobby.

“Being this is my first year ice fishing as well, you just got to get out there," said Saporito. "It’s trial and error, you don’t know where the fish are going to be at. You got to move around a little bit to find them, find the right bait and stay on them.”

DNR officials said Free Fishing Weekends are also a great time for young people without a license to fish. The department said many don't have access to fishing opportunities because of their schedules or where they may live.

Fisherman Aaron Walmsley of Kalamazoo said he believes the Free Fishing Weekend is also beneficial for adults who don't normally fish.

"We some friends that casual fishers, maybe they have a [fishing] license one year when we have plans, it gets them out of the house or significant others," said Walmsley. "People who aren’t avid fisherman or anglers, that get to have an experience.”

The next 2018 Free Fishing Weekend is scheduled for June 9 & 10. For more information, click here.

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