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People will fish along the Tidal Basin on the night of August 22

The only catch? Registration for the event is already closed

The Tidal Basin and Jefferson Memorial at night. The water gleams from street lights and the U.S. Capitol can be seen in the background.
The Tidal Basin and Jefferson Memorial at night
LightRocket via Getty Images

Take a stroll around the Tidal Basin next Thursday evening and you may see amateur anglers casting their bait and lures into the water for a free fishing event organized by the local and federal governments. From 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. August 22, the D.C. Department of Energy and Environment (DOEE), the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, and Alexandria-based group FishingCommunity.org will throw the event “to see what fish might bite under moonlight.”

But although the District first announced the fishing night last week, registration is already full. “Unfortunately, registration has closed, but walk-up participants will be accommodated as space, equipment, and volunteer angler-led instruction allow,” DOEE says on its webpage for the evening. “This event is primarily catch-and-release, but you may keep what you catch provided you bring a cooler with ice and follow all DC Fishing Regulations.” Invasive species like the northern snakehead and the blue catfish are to be removed, DOEE advises attendees.

If you are lucky enough to snag a spot at the event, participants ages 16 to 64 must have a D.C. fishing license, which can be obtained online ($10 for residents, $13 for non-residents). The evening kicks off at the Tidal Basin parking lot, where officials will hand out equipment and provide guidance on targeting fish. Youth under 16 may share equipment with adults, and equipment check-out for the event—which will occur rain-or-shine—ends at 8:30 p.m.

This isn’t the only free fishing event in the District coming up soon. “For other opportunities for youth to be introduced to angling, attend a free Anacostia River Family Fishing Day on Sunday, September 8 and Saturday, October 5 from 10 a.m. [to] 1 p.m,” the District explains.

Thomas Jefferson Memorial

701 East Basin Drive Southwest, , DC 20242 (202) 426-6841 Visit Website

Tidal Basin

W Basin Dr SW, , DC