There are few things better than spending an early summer afternoon on the water. For most of us, boating and fishing are essential summer activities. However, not everyone has access to a boat or fishing gear. Enter, Let’s Go Fishing (LGF).
In 2002, Joe Holm founded LGF in Willmar, Minn., with a simple mission: provide no-cost fishing and boating excursions to seniors, military veterans and people with special needs. Since its inception, LGF has grown to 27 chapters across several states.
The St. Croix Valley chapter was formed in 2010 by volunteers dedicated to enabling people to enjoy the scenic St. Croix River. From late May through mid-October, the group launches a 25-foot pontoon boat Mondays through Thursdays from the Bayport Marina for two-hour fishing trips; the crew, fishing poles and bait are included, and grandchildren and nursing home staff are encouraged to come along for the fun.
According to LGF board member Brett Bader, the nonprofit served more than 1,500 people last year. He credits the dedication of LGF’s volunteers with the continuing success and popularity of the program. “Our volunteers are some of the best people in the world,” he says. “Our boat would not be on the water without them.”
The chapter’s captains and crew won the 2015 Outstanding Volunteer Group Award from Community Thread in Stillwater. Everyone at LGF, from boat captain to board member, is a volunteer who is passionate about creating memorable experiences for deserving individuals.
To learn more about Let’s Go Fishing, see volunteer opportunities or sign up for a trip, visit lgfscvc.org.