Shad stories

Getting ready for the Festival of the Founding Fish at UDC

Posted 4/27/22

NARROWSBURG, NY — The Upper Delaware Council (UDC) will host a presentation on “The Founding Fish: American Shad on the Delaware River” on Thursday, May 5, at 7 p.m. at the UDC …

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Shad stories

Getting ready for the Festival of the Founding Fish at UDC

Posted

NARROWSBURG, NY — The Upper Delaware Council (UDC) will host a presentation on “The Founding Fish: American Shad on the Delaware River” on Thursday, May 5, at 7 p.m. at the UDC office, 211 Bridge St. Online and call-in options are also available for the public.

Don Hamilton, natural resources chief with the National Park Service, will show a video on the life history of the American shad and describe the annual young-of-year American shad sampling work performed by collaborative agencies.

Additionally, John Pizzolato will preview plans for the inaugural Festival of the Founding Fish: Upper Delaware Shadfest 2022 coming up on Friday through Sunday, May 20-22, with numerous events scheduled from Hancock to Port Jervis.

The Delaware Company, Inc., Upper Delaware Scenic Byway (UDSB) and several local business and community groups are organizing the festival. It has received funding support through grants from the 2022 Sullivan County Plans & Progress program and the UDSB.

Multiple venues along the UDSB—Route 97 corridor will host activities celebrating the historical and environmental significance of the American shad.

Among the anticipated events are festival opening and closing parties in the two gateway communities; a Shad Shindig at Fort Delaware Museum in Narrowsburg; shad cooking and fishing demonstrations; theatrical screenings; live musical performances; plein-air painting; lectures; a river flotilla; book readings by local luminaries; children’s stories, crafts, and an art contest; and shad-themed food and drink specials at restaurants.

The Delaware River’s American shad spring spawning run has occurred for the past 10,000 years as the migrating fish swim 330 miles up the undammed river from the ocean, providing an abundant food source for numerous species of wildlife and aquatic life along the way. The greyish-backed fish are a challenge for anglers too, and measure between 16 and 24 inches.

The Delaware River is also home to the last remaining commercial shad-netting fishery in Lambertville, NJ.

The UDC monthly meeting will follow.

All UDC meetings are open to the public. For further information on how to participate via Zoom, call 845/252-3022 or email ashley@upperdelawarecouncil.org.

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