indoor fishing toronto

Indoor fishing returns to Toronto this weekend

Every year, Toronto's Scadding Court Community Centre drains its chlorinated swimming pool and fills it with tap water and thousands of rainbow trout to create an indoor, urban fishing hole.

And the annual Gone Fishin' event returns this Saturday, June 11, to give Torontonians a chance to fish without ever leaving the downtown core. Yet, this event is about more than simply bringing the county to the city.

"We work in a very low income community," says Alina Chatterjee, Scadding Court's senior director of redevelopment and innovations. "A lot of our interest is making sure kids get exposed to regular life experiences and that's kind of our mission. If we can't take kids to a lake, we try to replicate that."

Scadding Court opens the pool to the public and to local school groups. For $5 (includes one trout), anyone can try their hand at fishing. If you participate, you can even get your fish cleaned and cooked on site.

While Gone Fishin' has grown enormously popular. Not everyone's pleased with this early-summer tradition.

Indoor Fishing

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), for instance, has previously tried to ban the event. "A couple of years ago, they started a petition against what we do at Scadding Court," says Chatterjee. "And we ended developing a relationship with them and inviting them to join us as partners."

While PETA declined this partnership, it now participates by handing out vegan food and by filling the Scadding Court's wading pool with plastic fish as a meat-free alternative.

"We've welcomed them into our space in a non-confrontational, non-aggressive way," says Chatterjee.

The two organizations may not see eye-to-eye, but they're both working to educate the city about the food we eat.

The Gone Fishin' Project runs Saturday, June 11 until Saturday, June 19. The pool is open 3:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays. More info and prices on the Scadding Court website.


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