Take Those Kids Fishing at These Local Events

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Have you thought about taking your kids fishing? It can be a little overwhelming, especially if you don’t have much fishing experience yourself. These local events provide great opportunities to learn to fish with your kids. Some of these events even provide the rods, bait and more free!  Don’t forget to register in advance!

Are you looking for a fun way to introduce your child to the sport of fishing?
Is your family looking for more ways to enjoy this activity together?

We’ve got some local family-friendly fishing events that everyone can enjoy, no matter your skill level!

Until moving to South Carolina, I’d never lived more than a few minutes from the ocean. Some of my most treasured childhood memories are of my father teaching my sister and I to fish. Watching my father continue this tradition with my children fills my heart with joy. Fishing is such a great way to teach children patience. With the exception of the small lake in our development whose fish had a passion for stale Entenmann’s donuts, most of my fishing was done in saltwater. Moving to the Upstate and having no saltwater to drop a hook in, was an adjustment.

We are lucky in the Upstate, that there are so many bodies of  fresh water to fish from. Freshwater fishing permits are only $10, and children are covered with a permitted adult. Organized fishing events are nice, because usually there are people there to help beginners.

Mommy & Me Fishing Lesson

Saturday April 27th  9 – 11:30 am

Lake Cooley Outdoor Education Center
100 Cooley Dock Road
Inman, SC 29349

Registration opened March 1st for this event, and is limited to 20 mommy/child limit.

The first of it’s kind for the parks department, they are hoping to repeat it on a regular basis if popular.

Bait, rods and reels will be provided for those who need them. There will be a fishing lesson and time to put your skills to use.

Croft State Park Fishing Rodeo

Saturday May 4th  8 am-12 pm

450 Croft State Park Road
Spartanburg SC 29302

In the past at fishing rodeos sponsored by the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources, they have provided children with fishing poles to keep, however I recommend bringing your own equipment if you have it. This event is held rain or shine. Register for the Croft State Park Fishing Rodeo.

The Lake Cooley Fishing Rodeo

Saturday May 11th 8:30 am-12:30 pm

Lake Cooley Outdoor Education Center
100 Cooley Dock Road
Inman, SC 29349

The first 150 kids at the event will receive a free fishing rod to keep and the first 300 people will get a free hot dog lunch. You will not need to register for this event, it is first come first serve. My son and I enjoyed this early morning event at the lake last year. We were one of the first to get there and it was so quiet. There were department of natural resource officers there to help people and give tips. One very lucky young lady went home with a brand new kid-sized kayak! This should definitely be on your family-fun bucket list this year.

Register for The Lake Cooley Fishing Rodeo.

Read more about this Upstate lake in our review of Lake Cooley.

Take a Kid Fishing Day

Saturday June 15th 8 am-12 pm

Cleveland Park
99 Cleveland Park Drive
Spartanburg SC 29303

You supply the pole and they provide the bait.

We really enjoyed this free event last year, there were prizes given out by raffle ticket and they stocked the water with fish before the event.

The bait is provided, but if you are new to fishing and not comfortable with impaling a wriggling worm on a hook, there is a limitless amount of synthetic bait available at local retailers.

SCDNR Fishing Clinics

The SCDNR also hosts family fishing clinics. You will learn how to tie fishing knots, how to rig a rod and reel, casting and the everyone will get to test their skills fishing. Kids from ages 4 to adults are welcome, so plan to attend and enjoy the outdoors by making this a Family Fun Day!

Register here for any of the fishing clinics.

April 6th, May 11th, June 15th, September  28th
9 am-12 pm

Table Rock State Park
158 Ellison Lane
Pickens, SC 29671
April 20th , May 18th, September 14th 
Time TBD

Lake Hartwell State Park
19138 SC-11
Fair Play SC 29643

If you haven’t considered fishing as a family activity, we hope you “dip your toe in the water” with one of these events! My son wants me to be sure to tell everyone, “you will like it!” 

Where do you bring your kids fishing?

About the Author
Melanie moved to Greenville 12 years ago from Florida but is a native of NY. She teaches floral classes for the Spartanburg Library system and is a SAHM to 2 children. She loves traveling to new places and loves that there are so many unique and wonderful places near the upstate!

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