The event is free and open to the public. ODFW staff and volunteers will be available on site to assist youngsters who want to learn how to fish.
“This is a good opportunity for families to come out, enjoy a day of fishing together, and give the kids a chance to see if they like the sport,” said Jeff Fulop, Salmon Trout Enhancement Program biologist for ODFW’s North Willamette Watershed.
ODFW will loan out rods and reels to youngsters who need equipment, and the department will also provide bait. Angling Education Program instructors will be present to answer questions and offer assistance.
Under Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations, anglers ages 13 and under can fish for free while those 14-17 will need to have a juvenile angling license, which are available for $9 at ODFW field offices and license outlets. Licenses will not be sold on site the day of the event.
St. Louis Ponds is a 54-acre complex of seven ponds owned and managed by ODFW. The site has a new paved ADA accessible trail around one of the ponds as well as several ADA accessible fishing platforms. In addition to stocked trout, the ponds contain several species of warmwater fish, including largemouth bass, catfish, bluegill, crappie and sunfish.
St. Louis Ponds are located 13 miles north of Salem and west of Interstate 5. To get to there from I-5, take the Woodburn exit. Then go east to Hwy. 99E. At Hwy. 99E, head south to Gervais Road. Go west on Gervais Road through the town of Gervais. The road eventually changes to St Louis Road. Continue west on St Louis Road as it crosses over I-5 to Tesch Road, at the railroad crossing. Go left on Tesch Road and follow the signs to the ponds.