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ATHENS— The Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center will kick off National Fishing and Boating Week with a day of free admission, free food and a free catfishing tournament 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. June 3.
“This year is particularly exciting because the hatchery will stock the fishing pond with additional hungry catfish for the event with the expectation of families enjoying record numbers of catches,” said Todd Witt, TFFC Education and Outreach manager.
All anglers submitting their catches during the catfishing tournament will be entered into an hourly prize drawing, and biggest fish awards will be presented in multiple age categories at the end of the tournament. TFFC will furnish all tackle and bait, however anglers are also free to bring their own.
Employees of the Athens Wal-Mart Supercenter will serve free hot dogs, chips and drinks to hungry anglers for lunch while supplies last.
National Fishing and Boating Week, June 3-11, comes at the start of the summer vacation season and is designed to encourage families to spend time together on and around water. Additionally, no fishing license is required anywhere in the state on Free Fishing Day, celebrated every year on the first Saturday in June.
In addition to fishing, visitors can walk the wetlands trail, see a diver hand feed fish, learn about the history of fishing in the freshwater fishing museum, tour the hatchery, shop for a Father’s Day gift in the Flat Creek Bait ‘n Goods Gift Shop and watch the alligator feeding at 3:30 p.m.
The Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center is an aquatic nature center and hatchery complex operated by Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. It is located 75 miles southeast of Dallas and 4 miles east of Athens on F.M. 2495.
For information visit www.tpwd.texas.gov/tffc or call (903) 676-2277.
National Fishing Day at TFFC is sponsored by Athens Wal-Mart Supercenter, First State Bank, Friends of TFFC and the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.