Free walleye fishing hosted by DNR - WNEM TV 5

Free walleye fishing hosted by DNR

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You can learn to fish one of Michigan's most popular species for free under a program sponsored by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and Fishmas Charters. They have teamed up to offer walleye fishing classes at several state parks this summer.

The two-hour "Rec 202: Walleye Fishing" classes emerged out of the DNR's popular Recreation 101 program** and will include discussion of the seasonal habits of the elusive walleye, proven techniques for finding fish, and a question-and-answer session.

Classes will run 6-8 p.m. at the following parks (counties):

-Sterling State Park (Monroe): Friday, May 15

-Newaygo State Park (Newaygo): Friday, June 26

-Ludington State Park (Mason): Monday, Aug. 3

-Burt Lake State Park (Cheboygan): Friday, Aug. 28

DNR officials say walleye enthusiasts of all skill levels (beginner through veteran anglers) are invited to take part in these free classes. Participants will learn not only how to have a successful walleye outing, but also about the behind-the-scenes effort that goes into managing Michigan's world-class freshwater fisheries.

Captain Ken Clark of Fishmas Charters in Whitehall, Michigan, will teach the classes. "If not for the joint efforts of the DNR and local fishing clubs, there would be no walleye to catch," said Clark, a self-professed "walleye snob" and a 20-year charter boat captain. "I teach fishing classes for the DNR's Rec 101 program because without their work, I wouldn't be able to enjoy the sport I love."

At the end of each class, two lucky participants will randomly be chosen to accompany Ken for an hour of fishing directly after the program. Winners must have valid fishing licensed to participate in the fishing excursion. Participants 17 and younger must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Classes may be canceled in the event of severe weather. For more information or to sign up for a class, you can contact Elissa Buck at 989-313-0000 or email

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