Site Search


Share | |

Posted on April 5, 2017

A man sits in front of a stream in fishing gear.

Pike Run Youth Fishing Festival
Dedication at 7:30 a.m., fishing at 8 a.m.
Rotary Park, California Borough
Third Street and Route 88, California, Pa. 

One of California’s most popular outdoor events opens this year with a celebration of environmental conservation and town-gown collaboration.

The Pike Run Youth Fishing Festival, which attracts hundreds of area families each year, will begin with a dedication of the newly restored Pike Run stream area at Rotary Park.

University and town officials will make brief remarks at 7:30 a.m. April 22, before fishing begins at 8 a.m.

Through a contract from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, Partners for Fish and Wildlife, a multi-agency cooperative based at Cal U, carried out the habitat restoration project last fall in collaboration with:

  • California Borough Recreation Authority.
  • Pheasants Forever.
  • Army Corps of Engineers.
  • Washington County Conservation District.
  • Department of Environmental Protection.

The restoration project is designed to alter water flow and reduce erosion, improve habitat for fish and other aquatic species, and create a better streamside experience for anglers, hikers and walkers.

Non-native plants have been removed and a walking path installed for safer access to the area, just a few blocks from campus.

Cal U biology student have begun a five-year effort to monitor the stream’s water quality, aquatic life and insect communities — a key part of the project. 

Kids can try fishing

Registration for the 22nd annual Pike Run Youth Fishing Festival begins at 7 a.m. The free event is open to boys and girls ages 15 and younger. An adult must accompany children younger than 13. 

Kids may bring their own fishing gear, or they can borrow equipment from a Cal U student volunteer as part of the state Fish and Boat Commission’s Borrow-A-Rod-and-Reel program.

The stream has been stocked with nearly 600 rainbow, brook, brown and golden trout, some as long as 24 inches. 

The organizing committee will provide entertainment and many other activities. Vendors will sell bait, tackle, food and beverages at the park.

The festival closes with a weigh-in, prizes and the awarding of trophies.

Event organizers

The festival is organized and programmed by students in the University’s parks and recreation management program, the Parks and Recreation Student Society, the Recreation Program Planning class, and the Cal U Eco-Learning Community, in cooperation with the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission, California Rotary, the Borough of California and the California Borough Recreation Authority.