family fishing weekend
Participants engage in a past Family Fishing Day event. (Photo provided by the OFAH)

Family Day weekend means the return of Ontario Family Fishing Weekend and the first of four licence-free fishing opportunities provided by the province.

The annual event, which encourages more families to try ice fishing, returns from Saturday, Feb. 19 through Monday, Feb. 21. A licence is not needed to fish during that time, but conservation limits apply.

Other designated licence-free periods include Mother’s Day (May 7-8), Father’s Day (June 18-19), and Family Fishing Week, from July 2-10.  At all other times, Canadian residents ages 18 to 64 must purchase a valid fishing licence to legally fish in Ontario. Veterans and active members of the Canadian Armed Forces are exempt.

How to take part

There are three ways to take part in the event. Register your family ice fishing plans at to get a free fishing package (while supplies last).

You can also visit to learn how to ice fish via new TackleShare YouTube Channel videos, and send photos of your family ice fishing to TackleShare social media accounts for a chance to win prizes.

Tackleshare, an OFAH effort supported by Ontario Power Generation, loans fishing equipment to the public at more than 140 loaner sites across Ontario. Follow TackleShare on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram or visit for more information.

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