Press Releases

Take Me Fishing Announces America's Top 100 Family Friendly Places to Boat & Fish for National Fishing & Boating Week June 1 - 8
Top 100 list released to encourage Americans to get out on the water during National Fishing and Boating Week, June 1-8, 2014
Top 100 Family Friendly Places to Fish and Boat in America
Top Places to Boat & Fish Infographic. Click to view larger image.

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (May 15, 2014) — Napa Valley’s Lake Berryessa has been voted #1 on Take Me Fishing’s first-ever Top 100 Family Friendly List of Places to Boat and Fish in the U.S. State parks from Florida, Texas, California, Missouri and Pennsylvania round out the top 10. In total, park and recreation areas in 24 states are represented in the Top 100.

The Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation’s (RBFF) Take Me Fishing campaign initiated the nationwide vote to provide families and outdoor enthusiasts with a recommended list of the best family-friendly places to experience the joys of boating and fishing as the weather warms up around the country. Criteria for the top places to boat and fish included having a public body of water within an hour of a major city and good fishing opportunities.

“We enlisted the help of state fish and wildlife agencies to identify popular locations, and asked fishing and boating enthusiasts who belong to our communities to vote on their favorite spots that are easily accessible and where the fish are known to bite most often,” said RBFF President and CEO Frank Peterson.

Who Hooked the Top 10 Spots:

  1. Lake Berryessa, Napa Valley, CA
  2. Bahia Honda State Park, BigPine Key, FL
  3. Skyway Fishing Pier State Park,St. Petersburg, FL
  4. Everglades National Park, Homestead, FL
  5. Kissimmee State Park, Lake Wales, FL
  6. Galveston Island State Park, Galveston, TX
  7. Lake Chabot Regional Park, Castro Valley, CA
  8. Blue Springs State Park, Orange City, FL
  9. Table Rock State Park, Branson, MO
  10. Presque Isle State Park, Erie, PA

Other Top Honey Holes:

  • While Napa Valley’s Lake Berryessa (Pleasure Cove Resort and Marina) took top honors and Castro Valley’s Lake Chabot Regional Park took the 7th spot, overall, California reeled in eight parks in the Top 100.
  • Galveston Island State Park (6th) is accompanied by eight other longhorn state fishing and boating spots in the Top 100.
  • The states of Florida, New York, Ohio and Pennsylvania each are represented six times on the Top 100.
  • Georgia, Illinois and Wisconsin have five placements in the Top 100.
  • North Carolina, Michigan, Colorado, Minnesota and Washington have four park and recreation areas on the Top 100 list.

The release of Take Me Fishing’s Top 100 list kicks off the celebration of National Fishing and Boating Week (NFBW), which takes place June 1-8, 2014. People are encouraged to visit their local parks and other fishing holes, perhaps one of the Top 100, during NFBW. Here are some other ways to celebrate:

  • Free Fishing Days: Perfect for those who are new to the sport or who want to mentor others, most states offer free fishing days that allow the public to fish without having to purchase a fishing license.
  • Special Events: Sites all over the country will host events, such as fishing derbies, regattas, boating demonstrations, festivals and more.
  • Kids’ Activities:’s Little Lunkers section offers games and information to learn before getting out on the water, and even certificates to commemorate their catch.
  • Conservation through Participation: Buying a fishing license and registering a boat helps fund efforts to conserve our natural waterways through projects such as fisheries research, habitat improvement, fish stocking, aquatic education and fishing and boating access facilities such as docks and boat ramps.

For additional details on National Fishing and Boating Week, including your state’s Free Fishing Days, visit has information on fishing reports, boat ramps, how-to information and a community for those who are interested in everything from fly fishing to boat maintenance.

“Whether you want to learn how to tie a knot or know where the closest boat ramp is, we have everything you need to learn, plan and equip your family for a great day on the water,” said Peterson.

About the Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation (RBFF)

RBFF is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to increase participation in recreational angling and boating, thereby protecting and restoring the nation’s aquatic natural resources. RBFF developed the award-winning Take Me Fishing™ campaign to create awareness around boating, fishing and conservation, and educate people about the benefits of participation. Take Me Fishing helps boaters and anglers of all ages and experience levels learn, plan and equip for a day on the water. The campaign website,, and its new Spanish-language counterpart,, feature how-to videos, information on how to get a fishing license and boat registration, and an interactive state-by-state map that allows visitors to find local boating and fishing spots.

For further information: Stephanie Vatalaro,, 703-778-5156