Vermont to hold 2nd annual Free Ice Fishing Day Festival on January 31
Posted on 01/09/2015
Respect Protect Enjoy LogoMedia Contact: Nicole Corrao, 802-318-1347
                             Bernie Pientka, 802-879-5698
                             Shawn Good, 802-786-3863

Vermont to hold 2nd annual Free Ice Fishing Day Festival on January 31

COLCHESTER, Vt. – Vermont’s 2nd annual statewide Free Ice Fishing Day is set to take place on Saturday, January 31, and will be highlighted by an activity-filled ice fishing festival hosted by the Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department in conjunction with the Champlain Valley Hardwater Tournament Series (CVHTS).
Vermont’s Free Ice Fishing Day, which began in 2014, enables residents and non-residents alike to go ice fishing anywhere in Vermont for the day without a fishing license. 
“Ice fishing is a fun way for people of all ages to get outside and enjoy Vermont’s natural resources during the winter months,” said Louis Porter, commissioner of Vermont Fish & Wildlife. “It’s also a great family activity and we hope that the public will take advantage of this opportunity to try out the world-class ice fishing that Vermont has to offer.”
The ice fishing festival, which is also free of charge and open to the public, will be held at the Malletts Bay Fishing Access Area on Lake Champlain in Colchester. The event will begin with registration and giveaways at 1 p.m.
The festival will feature a variety of activities including knot-tying demonstrations, an underwater fish-viewing station and a fish filleting and frying booth.
Additionally, attendees will be able to watch the CVHTS weigh-in at 2 p.m., and then fish with CVHTS professional anglers who will be sticking around to share their skills and knowledge of ice fishing with others.
Warming huts and snacks will be available to keep people comfortable, and there will be ice fishing equipment giveaways, while supplies last, to kids in attendance.
Information will also be provided on ice fishing tips and tactics, ice safety, fish identification and fish habitat. 
“This festival is a great event for anyone interested in ice fishing, including individuals and families who might want to participate in the sport for the first time,” said Bernie Pientka, fisheries biologist with Vermont Fish & Wildlife. “Aside from fishing, it’s also a wonderful chance to get outside, have a cookout, play games and simply enjoy quality time with kids.”
“The neat thing about ice fishing is just about anyone can do it and you’re not limited to the shore as can be the case with open water fishing,” added Jud Kratzer, fisheries biologist with Vermont Fish & Wildlife. “Furthermore, freshly harvested, tasty Vermont fish is hard to beat. We hope that folks will enjoy the free fishing day all over the state and that many will join us at the festival to celebrate ice fishing in Vermont.” 
To learn more about ice fishing in Vermont, visit
To preregister for the ice fishing festival, go to For additional information about the event, please contact Nicole Corrao with Vermont Fish & Wildlife by calling 802-318-1347 or emailing