Take Me Fishing encourages women to participate

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Take Me Fishing is asking women to inspire others with stories and pictures about fishing and boating. Shown here are guide Kasey Loomis, left, and Kenai River Classic chairwoman Kristen Mellinger.

Take Me Fishing is asking women to inspire others with stories and pictures about fishing and boating. Shown here are guide Kasey Loomis, left, and Kenai River Classic chairwoman Kristen Mellinger.

Take Me Fishing is asking women to share their fishing and boating stories on social media as part of Women’s History Month.

The campaign, which is an initiative by the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation, is asking women to share stories on social media and tag Take Me Fishing (#Take_Me_Fishing on Twitter) or send stories to info@takemefishing.org by March 20.

The best stories will be featured on Take Me Fishing and Vamos a Pescar blogs and social media.

A Facebook Live video featuring RBFF communications vice president Stephanie Vatalaros asking women at RBFF why they love fishing and boating has had 12,000 views, more than 100 likes and several comments, including one from nurse Ethel Luna Darwin who calls fishing “the best stress reliever.”

“Fishing heals my soul,” says Patsy Smith on Facebook.

Women helped drive an 8.2 percent spike in fishing participation in the last five years, with 45 percent of new fishing participants being female last year, said Frank Peterson, president of the Recreational Boating and Fishing Association, during an industry breakfast at the Miami International Boat Show.

Of those females, 42 percent were between the ages of 6 and 12.

“Women are extremely important to this increase in participation,” said Peterson. “We have to showcase girls and women participating in fishing. Women are extremely important to the industry they don’t see themselves in this sport. They don’t feel welcome, so we have to do a better job.”

To understand the needs of women, millennials, and diverse cultures, companies need to have relevant members on their staff, Peterson said, adding that 25 percent of RBFF employees now speak Spanish and all but four are female.

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