Article Posted: May 08, 2001

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SANDUSKY, OHIO -- The theme of the new Water Works Wonders fishing and boating campaign is simple: "Time on the water connects people. " The Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife is encouraging families to share some quality time this summer by going fishing.
Introducing children to fishing can be a rewarding, memory-rich experience for everyone involved. Or it can be a disaster without a little planning. The Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife offers these tips on making the best of a family fishing outing on the lake.

Consider the children's skill level. Is this their very first time fishing, or do they have some experience using a rod and reel? If it is their very first fishing experience, a shore fishing outing will most likely be more comfortable for them.

Choose an area with a high likelihood of success like those listed at the end of this article. Most kids are satisfied catching lots of smaller fish such as bluegill rather than catching fewer, bigger fish such as walleyes. Species most often caught from shore include blue gills, yellow perch, catfish, rock bass, largemouth bass, white perch, freshwater drum, and smallmouth bass.

If fishing from a boat, yellow perch fishing is ideal. The fishing method for perch is fun and easy to master. Catching a few fish on the first few outings will peak children's interest and make them look forward to the next trip.

Provide them with simple tackle in good working order. Nothing can be more discouraging to a child than complicated equipment or equipment that doesn't work.

Take along a camera. Nothing pleases children more than being able to show off their catch to others.

Keep realistic expectations when taking young children fishing. Realize that children can have short attention spans and may want to move on to something else after a shore time. If fishing from a boat, planning a full day's trip on the lake could turn into a bad experience. Again, perch fishing offers quick action fairly close to shore. If the kids have had enough fishing, it's only a short ride back to shore.

If it is a child's first time on a boat, going out on Lake Erie on a windy day when the water is choppy could be a mistake, especially if the child is prone to motion sickness. You may find yourself heading back to shore after only a short time on the water.

Above all else, have patience. You may be unsnagging lines, baiting hooks, and landing fish for them.

Suggested Places to Fish from Shore

International Park, Main Street, downtown Toledo;
Bayshore Access, Bayshore and Wynn Roads, Oregon;
Maumee Bay State Park, 1400 Park Rd. #1, (off Cedar Point Rd.), Oregon;
Metzger Marsh Fishing Pier, SR 2 off Bono Road, Curtice;
Turtle Creek Fishing Access, SR 2 at Turtle Creek, 12 miles west of Port Clinton;
Camp Perry Pier, SR 2, 6 miles west of Port Clinton;
Port Clinton Pier, Perry Street, (SR 163) downtown Port Clinton;
Catawba State Park Pier, Moors Dock Road, Catawba;
East Harbor State Park, Rt. 269
Lakeside Pier, on Lake Erie, Lakeside
Marblehead Lighthouse Access, Bayshore Rd., Marblehead
Mazurik Access, 8 1/2 east of Port Clinton off SR 163 on Northshore Blvd.;
Dempsey Access, CR 135 (Bayshore Road) at CR 140, 5 miles east of SR 169
Sandusky Bay Bridge Fishing Access, Exit off SR 2 at SR 269 exit on west end of Edison Bridge;
South Bass Island State Park, southwest corner of the island;
Aquatic Visitors Center dock, west end of Put-In-Bay harbor (rod and reels on loan);
Sandusky City Launch Ramp, Water Street west of downtown Sandusky;
Shoreline Park, Shoreline Drive, Sandusky;
Battery Park Marina, 701 E. Water St., downtown Sandusky;
Jackson Street Pier, foot of Jackson Street, downtown Sandusky;
Kelleys Island State Park breakwall, north tip of Kelleys Island;
Huron Boat Basin, Huron Street, west side of the Huron River;
Huron Pier, north of SR 268 at Huron;
Vermilion City Boat Ramp, West River Road, Vermilion;
Lakeview Park, US 6, east of SR 58, Lorain;
City of Lorain Municipal Boat Launch, north end of Oberlin Ave.;
Riverside Park, intersection of Alabama Ave. and Lakeside Ave, Lorain;
Port of Lorain, Lakeside Ave., Lorain;
Lakeside Launch, lakeside Ave, Lorain;
Century Park, intersection of US 6 and Massachusetts Ave., Lorain;
Domonkas Community Park, intersection of US 6 and Lake Breeze Rd., Sheffield Lake;
Huntington Reservation, Cleveland Metroparks, US 6, Bay Village;
Columbia Park, junction of SR 252 and US 6, Rocky River;
Bradstreet Landing Pier, US 6, Rocky River;
Rocky River Ramp, off Valley Parkway from Detroit Road, Rocky River;
Emerald Necklace/Krumreig Marina, off Valley Parkway from Detroit Rd., Rocky River;
Cleveland Lakefront State Park, Edgewater Memorial Parkway, use Edgewater Park exit;
East 9th Street Access, north end of East 9th Street, Cleveland;
East 55th Street Access, north end of East 55th Street;
Gordon Park, north end of East 72nd Street;
Euclid Beach, SR 283, East of East 156th Street;
Wildwood Park, junction of SR 283 and East 174th Street;
Fairport Harbor Port Authority Boat Launch, north end of Water Street;
Geneva Marina and Breakwall, SR 534 west of Geneva-on-the-Lake;
Arcola Creek Park, north end of Dock Road;
West Breakwall, Conneaut Harbor, north end of Broad Street, Conneaut;
Conneaut Creek Harbor and Pier, north end of Woodworth Road, Conneaut
Madison Township Park, Madison
Miller Road Park; Lake Rd./US 6 at Miller Road, Avon Lake

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