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March 10, 2022

Saying Goodbye to City Kids Fishing

City Kids Fishing’s (CKF) dissolution brings us deep sadness. FriendsPDX and CKF have a long, rich history of collaboration throughout the past two decades. Just about every year from May to September, our Friends would take groups of youth to private ponds with CFK and learn to fish, connect with nature, and spend time with each other.

FriendsPDX Program Facilities Coordinator of more than twenty-five years, Joy, recalls rousing youth in the morning for CKF adventures that started around breakfast time! “They would have muffins, fruit, and hot chocolate waiting for us to begin the day. Then we would start the fishing. Everyone would gear up with life vests and CKF always had the best equipment — poles, worms, tackle — you name it.” For many youth, this was their first time fishing! “To commemorate the event,” Joy shares, “they would take a Polaroid picture for the child to keep.”

By lunchtime, most youth would reach their three-fish limit, so CKF staff would help clean and gut the fish so youth could take their catch home. After a barbeque lunch, it was time to head home. Over the years, older youth would stay involved with these trips and tag along for fishing fun while also supporting youth who had never fished before by lending a hand.

When youth prepare to graduate from FriendsPDX after 12 ½ years, Friends typically ask them what final activities they want to do or do again. “The top two things were always to go fishing or to the beach,” says Joy. These outings were inclusive to the entire community, including CKF's board members who enjoyed building memories with the youth. We’re so thankful for City Kids Fishing and its legacy within FriendsPDX will live on.