Kids Fishing Day to offer 26 outdoor classes
Roaring River State Park will hold its annual back-to-school Kids Fishing Day from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 18.
Participating children, who are 15 and under, will receive a free youth fishing tag and a goody bag of gifts.
Over two dozen outdoor education classes will be offered throughout the event. Children who attend three classes will receive a choice of small prizes and be entered into a drawing for larger prizes that will be held at 5 p.m. Kids must be present to receive prizes.
Outdoor conservation workshops, which are open to all family members, will be offered from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Classes are listed below.
* Fly Casting, 9 a.m. David Waugh, who is certified by the national Fly Fishing Federation as a fly fishing instructor and serves as Roaring River Concessions manager, will teach basic casting techniques.
* Tree Identification, 9 a.m. Instructor Julie Fraley, who works at the Roaring River Hatchery, will teach children how to identify different Missouri trees.
* Fish Cleaning, 9:30 a.m. Instructors Ron Moffet and Chuck Knapp will give a hands-on demonstration on preparing trout for cooking.
* Macroinvertebrates, 9:30 a.m. Rick Horton, of MDC, will teach students about the function and importance of macroinvertebrates in the Roaring River stream.
* Stream Table Display, 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Rick Horton, who works as a fisheries biologist for MDC in Neosho, will conduct an ongoing display to illustrate the hydraulics of a stream. The effects of channeling and digging will be shown, and bank stabilization methods will be demonstrated.
* Critter Stamp Headbands, 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Children will have the opportunity to make and decorate their own headbands.
* Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) Mobile Aquarium, 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Instructor Ben Havens will offer information and answer questions about the aquarium and fish of Missouri streams and lakes.
* Missouri Stream Team, 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Instructor Carl Romesburg will offer an overview of the Missouri Stream Team program and how it benefits Missouri streams.
*Air Rifle Target Shooting, 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Friends of Roaring River volunteers will show students how to safely handle a rifle. Youngsters will also have the opportunity to sharpen their shooting skills during the class.
* Archery, 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Chris Berry, who works for the Lawrence County Sheriff's Department, serves as a hunting guide and is known as a world class competitor, will offer a hands-on lesson in basic archery. Berry is sponsored by PSE and Spot Hog.
* Furs and Skulls, 10 to 11 a.m. Shannon Ostertag, a taxidermist from Monett, will share his fur and skull collection with youngsters attending the workshop.
* Snakes Alive, 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Roaring River Assistant Naturalist Cheyne Matzenbacher will teach students about the natural history of snakes. Live specimens will be available.
* Live Bee Hive, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Instructor Kevin Young, of the Southern Missouri Beekeepers Association in Monett, will talk about the importance of honey bees and preserving bee environments.
* Fly Tying and Casting, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. MAKO Fly Fishing Club members will perform fly-tying demonstrations and work with kids one on one to teach fly casting.
* Your Watershed, 10 to 11 a.m. and 2 to 3 p.m. Instructor Tammy Trantham will share information on how people impact surface water. A model will be available that displays how point source and non-point source pollution affects water bodies.
* Fisheries Biology, 10:30 a.m. Rick Horton will share information on the unique characteristics of many different species of Missouri fish, their habits, where they live and their physiology.
* Fish Cleaning, 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. Ron Moffet and Charles Knapp will hold hands-on demonstrations on preparing trout, bluegill and catfish for cooking.
* Fish Cooking, 11:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. Instructor Rod May, Neosho National Fish Hatchery assistant manager, will demonstrate frying and grilling methods for cooking trout and catfish.
* How to Fish Roaring River, 1 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. Instructor Marvin Farwell, who is an experienced fisherman, will teach students about baits that are legal for each fishing zone in Roaring River. He will also show kids what type of knot to use to tie on a hook, how to rig a pole and how to fish with various types of bait and lures.
* Elk are Back in Missouri, 2 p.m. Julie Fraley will talk about the reintroduction of elk into Missouri's Ozark region.
* Hatchery Tour, 2 p.m. Cheyne Matzenbacher will teach students about the geology of Missouri's 20th largest spring, the history of Roaring River State Park and hatchery, the life cycle of the trout and how the fish are raised and stocked in the stream.
* Fly Tying, 2 to 3 p.m. Charlie Stock, who is a professional fly tyer and owner of Mid-West Flies, will work with kids one on one to help them tie their own flies.
* Knot Tying, 2:30 p.m. Instructor Caleb Beuterbaugh will teach students the anglers' skill of knot tying.
* Nocturnal Animals, Owls and Bats, 3 p.m. Julie Fraley will share why owls make no sound when they take flight and how bats are beneficial to the environment.
* Rod and Reel Casting, 3 p.m. Instructor Dustin Back will show kids how to cast different types of rod and reels.
* Fly Casting, 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. Charlie Stock will teach basic casting techniques.
Several bluegrass bands will perform on an outdoor stage during Kids Fishing Day. Wilderness Road will perform from 10 to 10:45 a.m., and Flying Buzzards will take the stage at 11 a.m. Spur of the Moment will entertain park visitors from noon to 12:45 p.m., and other groups will perform throughout the afternoon.
The event will also offer a free hotdog lunch provided by Roaring River Concessions.
Volunteers are needed for Kids Fishing Day. Angling experience is not required.
For more information or to volunteer, call the Roaring River Hatchery at 847-2430 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.