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GRAFTON - Children and adults enjoyed a beautiful day with a huge variety of outdoor activities once again at the annual Two Rivers Family Fishing Fair at Pere Marquette State Park near Grafton on Saturday.

This was the 33rd year for the free event. Scott Isringhausen, the urban fishing coordinator for the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, said the event helps connect kids and families to fun outdoor activities and is something love each year. The event is hosted by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Two Rivers National Wildlife Refuge (administered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service), and Pere Marquette State Park (administered by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources).

The Fishing Fair included a huge variety of outdoor activities from a catch-and-release bluegill pond where young anglers can have their photograph taken with their catch; the popular One-Cast station, where everyone wins a prize; and bow-fishing stations where children can shoot at moving targets in a pool or at a three-dimensional target. Every child who completes at least seven stations will receive a prize and have the chance to catch a trout in the trout pond.

Fetch-N-Fish is making a return to the fair this year. Jason Reynolds will bring his 4,000-gallon mobile aquarium, which will be stocked with many of the fish species found in the Illinois River. Reynolds will conduct fishing seminars throughout the day, along with a couple of dog shows.

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Camo the Clown, the Lodge Brothers Band, and Wildheart were once again a hit with the children and families. A new addition this year was Alex Nagy of Twisted Cat Outdoors, who will be on-site with his tournament rig. Food will be available for purchase throughout the day.

Isringhausen thanked the generous sponsors: “We are very fortunate to have the support of the Phillips 66 Wood River Refinery as a premier sponsor, along with Farm and Home Supply, the Jersey County Board, Walmart, State Farm Insurance of Jerseyville and Carrollton, and many others.”

Stephanie Whitehead attended the Two Rivers Fishing Fair with her children. She said it was an awesome way to spend a Saturday.

"There were a lot of friendly people and a lot of things to do the kids both have been able to fish a lot," she said. "There were a ton of things for the kids to do. It surprised me how much there was to do for children of all ages, it doesn't matter how old your kids are."

Camo The Coversvation Clown said his program is to inspire and encourage kids to get unplugged from video games and enjoy the outdoors.

"We had 1,500 kids here today and there was so much for the kids to do," he said. "It was a great day."

More like this:

Sep 27, 2021 | Reminder: Fishing Fair Set For Area Youth From 10-5 On Saturday, October 2, At Pere Marquette State Park

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Jun 8, 2022 | A Great Catch for Families at Pere Marquette State Park During 33rd Annual Two Rivers Family Fishing Fair June 11

May 31, 2022 | A great catch for families: Two Rivers Family Fishing FairJune 11 at Pere Marquette State Park

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