Thursday, May 8, 2014

Payson Wildlife Fair is Saturday

Everyone is invited to attend the 20th annual Payson Wildlife Fair on Saturday, May 10 to help celebrate its 20th year. The Payson Wildlife Fair is the longest running event of its kind in the state. Payson’s Green Valley Park will be transformed into a nature-lovers carnival featuring wildlife and outdoor activities. The public is invited to attend this free, family-oriented event. 

“This is a great way for the family to spend quality time together at no cost,” says Natalie Robb, Arizona Game and Fish Department supervisor in the Payson District. “There’s something for everyone: fishing in Green Valley Lake for some of the 800 pounds of fish stocked just for this event, games, live wildlife like a golden eagle, bobcat, or 15-foot-long python, and even kayaking.”

Other live wildlife on display will include rattlesnakes, Gila monsters, alligators and small mammals such as bats. Fair visitors can test their skills at one of the casting booths, BB gun or archery ranges, or they can visit booths from a variety of conservation groups and talk with experts from Ducks Unlimited, Phoenix Herpetological Society, and Tonto Natural Bridge, to name a few.

Green Valley Lake will receive more than double its normal stocking of trout in preparation for this event. Normally the park receives about 300 pounds of trout per stocking.  For this event, 800 pounds of fish will be released into the lake prior to the fair. No fishing license is required for fair attendees, and equipment and bait can be borrowed from the free fishing booth at the fair.  

The fair is a cooperative effort between the Arizona Game and Fish Department, USDA Forest Service, Mogollon Sporting Association, and Payson Parks and Recreation Department. The fair runs from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on May 10 at Green Valley Park in Payson.

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