ATHENS-The Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center (TFFC) is offering visitors on Saturday, Sept. 30, opportunities to learn about a wide range of outdoor skills and participate in family fun events during its annual Outdoor Expo and Bluegill Family Fishing Tournament. The expo will run from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. All kids 12 and under are admitted to TFFC free for this event.
Highlighting the event is the Bluegill Family Fishing Tournament, held on the TFFC’s free fishing ponds. Visitors may sign up for the tournament in Anglers Pavilion when they arrive and registration is free. Weigh-in and the awarding of prizes will take place at 2:30 p.m. in the Anglers Pavilion.
Among the many exhibits and activities include live animal displays featuring reptiles and raptors. The Blackland Prairie Raptor Center will present a raptor show at 1 p.m. and will be conducting walk-around displays on the grounds. Wildlife on the Move will present a variety of interesting creatures at noon followed by a see-and-touch session at 3 p.m.
Other exhibits include monarch butterfly watch, native plants, hands-on displays featuring beach bio-facts and marine life in touch tanks presented by Texas Parks and Wildlife Department coastal fisheries staff. Visitors can participate in the Texas Pollinator Bioblitz at TFFC that day.
Visitors can view fish up close in their natural habitats in aquaria and watch a diver hand-feed fish in the TFFC’s 26,000-gallon dive tank aquarium during shows at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.
Lone Star Fly Fishers, Dallas Flyfishers and the Pineywoods Fly Fishers will teach the basics of fly fishing and fly tying and Mabank High School archers will offer instruction in archery skills.
The event is sponsored by the Friends of TFFC.
The Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center is located at 5550 F.M. 2495, about four miles east of Athens. All expo events are included with paid admission, which is $5.50 for adults and $4.50 for seniors. Children 12 and under will be admitted free to the EXPO and must be accompanied by an adult. For more information call (903) 676-2277 or visit tpwd.texas.gov/tffc.