Dedication of 'Bob Gerding Catch and Release Pond' part of day-long activities
The ABQ BioPark Tingley Beach fishing ponds are stocked with catfish and ready to welcome anglers for National FreeFishing Day on Saturday, June 7. No fishing license is required to fish from dawn until dusk on this special day.
At 9 a.m., Mayor Richard J. Berry and City Councilor Brad Winter will dedicate the southern Catch and Release Pond as the "Bob Gerding Catch and Release Pond," in memory of Gerding, an ambassador for the New Mexico outdoors who passed away in December of 2013. Bob Gerding was an avid fisherman, and served as a steward in the community for fishing at Tingley Beach.
For 15 years, Gerding produced Bob Gerding's Outdoor Adventures Hunting & FishingShow, a three-day extravaganza each February at Expo New Mexico that drew thousands of attendees and hunting and fishing vendors from as far away as Australia and South Africa.
"Tingley Beach is a great recreational area for families," said Mayor Berry. "Bob Gerding recognized its value to our community and because of his commitment to this beloved place and his legacy of introducing children to the great outdoors, we are proud to be a part of the dedication."
"As a fly fisherman, I know that Bob was instrumental in growing recreational fishing here in New Mexico for folks of all ages. It's an honor, and a small token of appreciation, for the City to be able to dedicate this pond to Bob and his family," said City Councilor Brad Winter.
Visitors to Tingley Beach also can stop by education tables from 9 a.m. to noon for fishing crafts, fly-fishing info and a bosque ecology station. All three fishing ponds will be open from sunrise to sunset.
"Since you don't need a license for National Free Fishing Day, this Saturday is a great time to fish for the first time or get started again if you haven't been out in a while," said Kathy Lang, Curator of Tingley Beach. "And if you enjoy the activity, you can purchase a license, and then fish for free at Tingley Beach anytime. Our park offers some of the best urban fishing in the whole state."
In addition to fishing, Tingley Beach guests can enjoy walking with friends and leashed dogs on nearly 1 mile of paved trails under young cottonwoods, across bridges and next to public artwork. In the summer, guests can rent a pedal boat from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. daily (open until 6 p.m. on weekends). Tingley Beach also offers easy access to the biking and hiking trails in the adjacent Rio Grande Bosque.