Illinois Free Fishing Days are June 14-17 this year!

4 Days of FREE Fishing! 🐟

Illinois residents looking to get out on the water can do so free of charge in numerous locations this weekend, as the state’s annual Free Fishing Days will get underway on Friday. This is a great time to get kids out on the water and teach them how to fish!

According to the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, Free Fishing Days will take place June 14-17, with residents able to fish without a license, salmon stamp or an inland trout stamp all weekend long.

Those who are eager to try their hand at catching fish can look forward to a number of events being held by forest preserves, parks, and fishing clubs across the state during the 2024 Illinois Free Fishing Days. Head to Hidden Lakes Trout Farm in Bolingbrook to take advantage of free pole rentals and gifts for Dad, enjoy breathtaking views and free entry at Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge in Carterville, or compete in the biggest and smallest fish competition to win prizes at the Father’s Day Fishing Frenzy at Lakefront Park in Fox Lake.

Not only are you allowed to fish without a license during the Free Fishing Days, but newcomers who reel in trophy fish can keep their catch, so long as it meets requirements and the body of water allows it. While you may not need a fishing license or certain stamps during the Free Fishing Days, you will still have to follow all applicable fishing laws and rules set by your preferred fishing spot. If you are unsure of fishing laws, whether you are able to go fishing in a certain body of water, or how many fish you can keep, check the resources listed by IDNR at

Whether you are an experienced angler or have never cast a line, it is always important to keep in mind what you are fishing, where you are fishing, and how you are fishing. While enjoying the Free Fishing Days, make sure to remember these important tips to stay safe while you are having fun:

  • Know who and what is around you while casting your line
  • Always wear a life jacket when you are on, near, or in the water
  • Only cast where fishing is allowed
  • Handle fish with care when removing your hook
  • Only consume fish that are safe to eat

For more info: Illinois residents can fish without a license this weekend – NBC Chicago

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