Aquatic Education Programs

Fishing Clinic

The small, freckle-faced 6-year-old boy with wispy-brown hair bit his lip as he struggled and grunted with his task at hand. He had just hooked his first fish and was intent on landing it, oblivious to the shrieks and cheers of other children around him. He finally beached his prize, a fat and flopping 2-pound channel catfish, and smiled with an ear-to-ear grin worth a thousand words. This is a scene replayed countless times by many children during fishing clinics sponsored by the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks, and Tourism.

take me fishing logo

Fishing clinics are hosted by department employees at state fishing lakes, parks, and city lakes and ponds. Most are geared toward younger children and others who may not have much experience with fishing techniques and tactics. They are held throughout the spring and summer months and occasionally in the fall.

Content covered in a clinic varies by presenters but all have fishing as a central theme. Fish identification, management, casting demonstrations, equipment, water safety, and even fish cooking are a few areas covered. 

Participants don't even need their own equipment. Rods, reels, and other necessary fishing equipment will be provided for use at the fishing clinics.

Fishing clinics serve to educate and entertain thousands of Kansas youngsters each year. Information and experience gained during these clinics remain with children forever. Those involved learn to appreciate the joys fishing can offer and the rewards of a fine day on the water.

The Aquatic Education Program, FishKS, has a program similar to Hunter Education where volunteers can become Certified Angler Instructors.  These instructors are essential to the success of FishKS by coordinating and assisting with fishing events statewide.  To become a Certified Angler Instructor, you must attend a four hour class (Free) and complete supervised instruction.  The following classes have been scheduled.  To register, visit or email

  • Junction City (Sportmans Acres) - July 13th, 2-6pm
  • Great Bend (Wetland Center) - August 24th, 1-5pm 

Please visit the Aquatic Education Calendar to find events scheduled in your area.  If you would like more information on FishKS or fishing clinics in your area, contact the nearest KDWPT office or the Pratt Operations Office at (620) 672-5911.

Aquatic Education Calendar


Kansas 2019 Sunflower Games

Location: Topeka, KS

Type: Aquatic Education

Date: Saturday, July 27, 2019

Contact: Bill Horvath

Time: 7:30 am - 10:00 am

Other Information:

The Fishing Derby is back as part of the 30th anniversary of the Kansas Sunflower games. The date is July 27th, 2019. Registration will open at Lake Shawnee Jr fishing lake at 7:30 and we will fish from 8:15 to 9:45. There is a $5.00 processing fee per participant.  Fishing will be divided into 3 age groups. Gold, Silver and Bronze medals will be awarded for the 3 biggest catfish and the 3 biggest other fish in the three age divisions: 7 & under, 8 – 11, and 12 – 15.

There will be a commemorative tee shirt only to participants who register by June 30th at but you can also register the day of the derby.

Hosted by Master Angler Bill Horvath from Fishing’s Future. Point of contact for questions can be reached at


Ralph Arensdorf Youth Fishing Tournament

Location: Kingman, KS

Type: Aquatic Education

Date: Sunday, July 28, 2019

Time: 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm

Other Information:

Free Fishing Tournament open to youth age 4-15 at Hoover Pond in Riverside Park, Kingman.  Limited number of poles available so participants are encouraged to bring own equipment.  Prizes will be awarded after the event.  Registration begins at NOON. 

For more information or to make a donation, please contact Doug Arensdorf 316-214-3276 or Jani Arensdorf 620-243-2444


3rd Annual Brandon Stroda Fishing Derby

Location: Junction City, KS

Type: Aquatic Education

Date: Saturday, August 03, 2019

Time: 8:00 am - 12:00 pm

Other Information:

Brandon Stroda Annual Fishing Derby at Homer's Pond in Junction City, KS.   Fishing, Food and Prizes for children 16 and younger.  Participants are encouraged to bring their own tackle and equipment.  For more information, please visit the Facebook Event Page below

Harvey County Fair

Location: 800 West 1st St Newton, KS

Type: Aquatic Education

Dates: 08/03/19 - 08/04/19

Time: 9:30 am - 4:30 pm

Other Information:

Fishing's Future and the Harvey County Parks Dept will be setting up the fishing tank so kids can fish at the Harvey County Fair.  FREE for all kids 15 and under.

For more information, visit EventBrire -

Harvey County Fair

Location: Newton, KS

Type: Aquatic Education

Dates: 08/03/19 - 08/04/19

Time: 9:30 am - 5:00 pm

Other Information:

Fishing’s Future and the Harvey County Parks Department will again be setting up the fishing tank filled with catfish so kids can catch a fish at the Harvey County Fair. This is free for all kids 15 and under.


OK Kids Day

Location: Clinton State Park

Type: Aquatic Education

Date: Saturday, August 10, 2019

Contact: Clinton State Park

Phone No: 785-842-8562

Time: 8:00 am - 12:00 pm

Other Information:

Clinton State Park will host their annual Outdoor Kansas Kids day on August 10. Event time is still TBD. This is a FREE park entrance day.  All education activities are free and include Fishing Derby, Animal Show-n-Tell, and Archery.   Register for this event by contacting Clinton State Park, 785-842-8562 or


Certified Angler Instructor Course

Location: Great Bend, KS

Type: Aquatic Education

Date: Saturday, August 24, 2019

Contact: David Breth

Phone No: 620-672-5911

Time: 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Other Information:

The FishKS Certified Angler Instructor program is made up of certified volunteers who want to share their passion of fishing and the outdoors.  Instructors have access to training, resources, and equipment to host fishing education events in their community.  If you are interested in joining the program, a FREE certification course is being offered on August 24th at the Kansas Wetland Education Center in Great Bend.  Registration is limited and required.  Please register at  Thank you

Checklist of Kansas Fish