Florida FWC announces spring license-free freshwater fishing weekend

Thayne Muthler

Get ready to cast your lines without a license in Florida! The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) is rolling out a license-free freshwater fishing weekend on April 6 and 7, welcoming anglers of all ages and skill levels to reel in the fun across the state's scenic lakes and rivers.

Tom Graef, the Head of Freshwater Fisheries Management at FWC, emphasized the exceptional fishing experience that Florida offers, highlighting the chance for residents and visitors alike to bond with loved ones amidst the state's natural wonders.

While the license requirement is waived for this special weekend, it's important to note that other fishing regulations such as seasonal limitations, bag restrictions, and size regulations still apply. Anglers looking to secure or renew their fishing licenses can easily do so online at

FWC is pulling out all the stops to make this license-free weekend memorable. They're hosting two exciting family fishing events:

  1. Dive into the action at Tenoroc Fish Management Area in Lakeland on April 6 from 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. To join in, simply ring up FWC at (863) 648-3200 to register. Free lunch and bait await, and for young anglers aged 15 and under accompanied by a parent, there are loaner rods and reels to try out.

  2. Another fantastic event awaits at the Florida Bass Conservation Center in Webster, also on April 6 from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Bring your own fishing gear and bait, and savor complimentary hotdogs and hamburgers amidst the fishing fun.

Whether you're angling for freshwater or saltwater, or seeking out the best boat ramps and piers, has got you covered with all the essential info.

And here's a bonus for bass enthusiasts: FWC's TrophyCatch program offers a chance to win prizes by submitting largemouth bass weighing 8 pounds or more. So, get ready to hook some memories and maybe even reel in a trophy-worthy catch!