Fishing Has No Boundaries

Fishing Has No Boundaries

Madison Magazine: Please describe your involvement with Fishing Has No Boundaries, Inc.

Jennifer Staebell: As the director of outreach for FHNB Madison Chapter, I have many roles revolving around marketing of this amazing event. Half of my role is social media and website manager. Within the past year we have reached many milestones by creating our own Facebook and Twitter accounts, and built our chapter’s very own website! The other half of my position encompasses fundraising to support our event. Luckily, our event speaks for itself, so finding organizations and individuals to support the event is a peach (usually)! I know how valuable each penny is to these participants, so I like to acknowledge our sponsors with a special “shout-out” on our Facebook page; we couldn’t make such an amazing event happen without our donors and volunteers!

MM: What has been the most beneficial element of this organization for you?

JS: I am a huge supporter of local businesses, non-profits and nature … after all, each of these make Madison so unique! I’m especially passionate about connecting people with the great outdoors, and this event really opens up an opportunity for some people who can’t get that chance as often as others. Knowing that my efforts have helped keep this event running for another year, and helped get that extra person out onto the lake, that’s my reward!

MM: How has Fishing Has No Boundaries, Inc. and its events enhanced the Madison community?

JS: This event aims to give people with disabilities the chance to go fishing. The type of abilities our participants have doesn’t make anyone more or less eligible to come out with us; anyone with any sort of disability is welcome at our events. We make it about giving an equal opportunity to Anglers with Disabilities, because let’s face it, fishing is a luxury to some, and taking a wheelchair out on the water comes with challenges most anglers don’t encounter.
Likewise, our volunteers get the chance to do something truly good with their weekend. Each year we have returning participants and returning volunteers who love this fun-filled weekend. Our volunteers are spectacular, they really make this event what it is, and many feel it is a very rewarding experience.

MM: Please tell us about the upcoming Fishing Has No Boundaries, Inc. event in Madison.

JS: This July 11 and 12, Fishing Has No Boundaries will be fishing on Lake Mendota from Governor Nelson State Park. We start bright and early with a sausage and egg breakfast donated from Oscar Meyer, then shove off for a day full of fishing. After a day on the lake, the participants enjoy a Fish Fry on Saturday hosted by the Yahara Fishermen’s Club. Sunday we start early again and bring the boats in around noon for an Oscar Meyer grill-out and awards ceremony! Awards are given to participants for size and quantity of their fish they caught that weekend; there are tons of fish categories, and plenty of awards to go around!

MM: How can the community get involved with Fishing Has No Boundaries, Inc.?

JS: The community can get involved a few ways: Donate, Volunteer and Spread the Word! Donations help keep costs low for participants, and help us keep the weekend safe; if a neighbor would like to make a donation, they can do so easily through our website. Individuals, families and companies are encouraged to come out and volunteer for a few hours. Each year the positions we need filled the most are Fish Cleaners, Dock Workers, and Boats! If a fisherfolk has a boat to lend, we reimburse with gas cards (and extra smiles, of course). Other available positions are visible on our website:

MM: What do you want others to know about Fishing Has No Boundaries, Inc.?

JS: Part of the reason Madison is so well known around the nation is our lakes. Did you know Madison has been voted in the Top 10 Neighborhoods in the Nation, and a Top City for Bicyclists? Our lakes contribute to these awards; the lakes offer neighborhood parks and beaches, Summer and Winter activities, and great bike trails winding around the lakes. Enjoying some time on the water is something most Madisonians get to enjoy, but not all. Many people with disabilities don’t have the accessibility to go Paddle Boarding on Lake Monona Bay, walk out on Lake Mendota to the Statue of Liberty peak in mid-winter, or even have a chance to go boating on our lakes. This one weekend a year, we offer that chance to truly enjoy Madison’s beautiful lakes to our friends with disabilities.

Fishing Has No Boundaries fishing event will be July 11 th & 12 th at Governor Nelson State Park.

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