Officials with the Branson Parks & Recreation hope a new program will bring visitation to a city park and help inspire a love of fishing.

Adam Houseman, business operations supervisor for the Branson Parks Department, said the city wanted to showcase the activities at Eiserman Park, located adjacent to the Branson Community Center at 201 Compton Drive.

“It’s a really neat area, and we’ve done a cool thing with getting disc golf started up and redesigned,” Houseman said. “But we have those really nice ponds down there, and the assistant director, Jason Reinsch, called Missouri Department of Conservation ... and said ‘Hey, is there any sort of program we can start? We’re thinking about kids fishing.”

According to Houseman, the Conservation Department provided 150 hybrid bluegill to stock both ponds. Fishing poles and tackle boxes are also available from the community center for use at no cost.

Children ages 15 and under will be allowed to fish the ponds during designated hours. 

The ponds will be open for fishing on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays from 8-11 a.m. and 4-7 p.m.

“We want to get people back at Eiserman, get kids involved in fishing and work with the Missouri Department of Conservation and grow that love of fishing and the outdoors,” he said. “Grow the sport and get kids outside again.”

“This program will not only provide a great opportunity for the entire community to enjoy the benefits of fishing, but it is also part of our efforts to revitalize Eiserman Park. We are excited about our partnership with the Missouri Department of Conservation and the benefits it is bringing to our community through, first, providing Archery for youth and now fishing,” Cindy Shook, director of Branson Parks and Recreations, said via press release.

Houseman also said the new program is playing into the summer day camp.

“Everything from the basics of here’s a rod and reel and how to cast and we’re going to get into actual fish habitats and how to release a fish, and here in a few weeks we’re going to take them fishing,” he said.

For questions regarding this youth catch and release program, call the Branson Community Center at 417-337-8510.

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