My husband has this little dream of taking our daughter fishing. We don’t have any boys and he loves exposing our three-and-a-half year old to new things. My husband doesn’t fish and, quite honestly, I’m not sure how much time he has for it. But I support it when he wants to take our kids out of explore nature. So I’m encouraging him to take her out next weekend because fishing is free in Michigan.

Fish on the Great Lakes and any of Michigan inland lakes during the free fishing weekend June 11-12.
Fish on the Great Lakes and any of Michigan inland lakes during the free fishing weekend June 11-12.

Twice a year, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources waives of the fee of a fishing licenses to allow residents and out of state visitors the opportunity to try fishing on the Great Lakes as well as the many inland lakes Michigan has to offer. There are plenty of places to fish with Michigan’s 3,000 miles of Great Lake shoreline, 11,037 inland lakes and 36,350 miles of rivers and streams.

While license fees are waived, all fishing regulations still apply.

There are plenty of fishing activities going on the metro Detroit area, including:

Macomb County
Location: Clinton Township Civic Pond
Date: June 11, 2011
Time: 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Details: There will be a fishing derby from 3:00pm until 5:00pm for kids 16 years of age and younger. Prizes will be awarded. The derby is “Catch & Release” only so all fish will be released back into the pond. Pre-registration is required, so call Clinton Township. There will be an entry fee of $4.00 for residents and $6.00 for non-residents.
Contact: Clinton Township 586-286-9336

Location: Wolcott Mill Historical Center – North Branch of Clinton River
Date: June 11, 2011
Time: noon to 4 p.m.
Details: Fishing clinic for all, children need to be accompanied by an adult. Fishing poles and bait will be provided. There will be fish identification, water quality awareness, tackle making, knot tying, casting techniques, and boater safety.
Contact: Kathy Reidt or Bill Thomas, Historical Center, 586-749-5997

Oakland County
Location: Crooked Lake
Date: June 11, 2011
Time: 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Details: Meet at the Lakepoint Shelter for an afternoon of family fishing fun. Pre-registration and pre-payment of $3 a person is required.Tackle, bait and instruction will be provided. Have fun doing kids crafts and bring a light colored t-shirt to make fish prints. Explore the mini ponds or take a ride on a pontoon boat. There will also be an inflatable obstacle course.
Contact: Independence Oaks County Park 248-625-6473

Location: Riverside Park Auburn Hills
Date: June 11, 2011
Time: 7:30 a.m. to 11 a.m.
Details: 8th Annual Kids Fishing Derby for kids ages 16 and under accompanied by an adult. Kids will be fishing for trout and there will be a raffle for prizes.

Wayne County

Location: Kensington Metro Park, shore fishing area
Date: June 11, 2011
Time: 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Details: Annual fishing event for kids 4 to 16 accompanied by an adult. Fishing will be from 8:00 to 11:00am. Pre-registration is required by calling Jim or Bob or please send an email to: Everyone is invited and there is no charge. Animal Magic will have a wildlife show starting at 11:00. Kids will receive a free fishing gift, and will have the chance to buy a volunteer youth fishing license for $2.00. Metro West Steelheaders will pay the $1.00 fee for the DNR Sportcard. There will be a free lunch at Noon.
Contact: Metro West Steelheaders, Jim Robertson 734-383-2790 or Bob Olari 248-787-1582

Location: William Milliken State Park
Date: June 11, 2011
Time: 8 a.m. to noon
Details: Kids Fishing Fest is free for kids 16 and under accompanied by an adult. Bring your own pole, tackle and a bucket. Bait and a limited number of pole will be provided. Kids will enjoy face painting, arts and crafts and the kids fun zone. Refreshments will be served. Please register by June 3 by going to:
Contact: Steve Brock, 313-396-0217 or Detroit RiverFront Conservancy, 313-566-8248

St. Clair County
Location: Celebrate the Lake MacRay Harbor
Date: June 11 and 12, 2011
Time: Times vary depending on event, please call for information.
Details: Celebrate the Lake will have both kids activities and educations displays for the entire family. There will be a kids fishing derby on Saturday from 2:00 till 3:00pm. Please bring your own fishing pole, tackle and bait. Small prizes will be included. Call for a list of individual events.
Contact: Jeremy Geist or Michele Arquette-Palermo 248-601-0606, Clinton River Watershed Council

For more activities around the state, visit the DNR free fishing events website.

Detroit Mommies Expert Contributor
Courtney is the traveling mom! She has 3 girls and is the founder of Detroit Mommies and currently lives in Florida. You can follow her on Twitter @courtneyRVL.
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12 years ago

Ok so my husband and son decided to take advantage of the free fishing weekend…… well all they “caught” was a $30 ticket for not having an Oakland County Park Permit. Fishing off a dock for 20 minutes at Lake Sixteen.