HARRISBURG, IL - With warmer weather abounding, and summer soon around the corner, the Shawnee National Forest offers a multitude of great opportunities to connect with the natural world. Whether it is a day spent picnicking, fishing and swimming at Pounds Hollow Recreation Area, camping at Camp Cadiz or enjoying a day of hiking at Little Grand Canyon, Rim Rock or one of Forest's many other trails, is truly something for every outdoor enthusiast on the Forest.
For those seeking an even better reason to get outside, the Shawnee National Forest is hosting its annual Kid's Fishing Derby and offering free camping on Saturday June 9th, 2012.
Kids ages 5 through 15 are invited to attend the Fishing Derby with an accompanying adult. Admission to the derby is free, and the event will be held at the Lake Glendale Recreation Area's Cardinal Bay from 8:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. Lake Glendale Recreation Area is located East off Route 145, two miles north of Dixon Springs.
Registration will begin at 7:30 a.m. and attendees will need to bring fishing equipment and bait. Derby's activities include fishing, nature activities and various contests that result in prizes awarded to the participants. A free lunch will also be provided at noon. Saturday, June 9th marks Illinois' Free Fishing Weekend, so no fishing license is required to participate in the derby too. For additional information on the Lake Glendale fishing derby contact the Hidden Springs Ranger District office at 618- 658-2111.
In partnership with the Rise to the Future Kids Fishing Derby Committee, the Illinois Department of Natural Resources and other supporting agencies and organizations, the Shawnee National Forest will also be participating in the annual Glen O. Jones Fishing Derby, on Saturday, June 9th, 2012. Registration starts at 8:00 a.m., and the derby is open to kids ages 15 and under when accompanied by a parent or guardian. Bank fishing only is permitted, and lunch will be provided as will prizes. For information on the Glen O. Jones fishing derby call (618) 273-3042.
In addition to Illinois Free Fishing Weekend, June 9th also marks Get Outdoors Day, and in honor of the celebration, the Forest is encouraging visitation to our Nation's public lands by offering free camping. The Shawnee National Forest campgrounds included in the fee waiver are as follows: Garden of the Gods, Pounds Hollow, Camp Cadiz, Pine Hills, and Johnson Creek.
Please note that concessionaire operated campgrounds are not included in the fee waiver.
Administered by the U.S.D.A. Forest Service, the Shawnee National Forest is one of 155 national forests nationwide. As the only national forest in Illinois, the Shawnee offers numerous avenues for connecting with the natural world through its 280,000 acres of varied landscape. Whether your interests lie more in outdoor recreational activities, such as hiking or camping, or include learning about the unique natural and cultural heritage of southern Illinois, the fields, forests and streams of the Shawnee welcome you. To discover more about the Shawnee National Forest, visit http://www.fs.usda.gov/shawnee
and follow us on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/shawnee
. National information about the U.S. Forest Service can be found at: http://www.fs.fed.us