THE HISTORY OF THE ANGLERS ASSOCIATION OF ONONDAGA
The Anglers Association of Onondaga was formed in the spring of 1890 by the local sportsmen who were angered over the pollution and exploitation of fish in Oneida Lake. With the appointment of Thomas G. Alvord as chairman, the creation of a constitution and by-laws, the Association was on its way. The Anglers Association of Onondaga paid for game wardens which the State Conservation Department could not provide. Pressure from area businessmen and the Syracuse Newspapers prompted New York State to find funding for permanent wardens on its own budget just a few years later. The objective of The Anglers Association of Onondaga is as follows:
“For the protection of fish in the waters, game in the fields, and song and insectivorous birds in the fields and forests of Onondaga County for the benefit of all people.”
In compliance with this credo, fish and game violators were sought and reported to wardens, netting 300 arrests and ten thousand dollars in fines paid. Another service provided by The Anglers Association of Onondaga is the restocking of fish and wildlife, in particular brook and rainbow trout, walleye, and three thousand pheasants. Also, one half million bass were stocked by our organization. In 1960 the Anglers Association made Webster Pond its home, through a long term lease with the city of Syracuse.
We have since performed several renovations over the years making the pond look like this
The land originally belonged to Revolutionary War Veteran Ephraim Webster. When the Anglers Association moved in, the site was strewn with trash and was being considered for use as a landfill. The pond was reclaimed after much hard work and dedication. In fact, Webster Pond has been declared a Forever Wild Nature Conservation Area. Wild life common to the area include: ducks, Canada geese, heron, purple marten, deer, fox, mink, raccoon, squirrel, woodchuck, opossum, turtles and a mute swan “Lilly”. The Anglers Association of Onondaga is the oldest continuously active sportsmen’s’ club in New York State having passed its 100th birthday in 1990.
It is also the only active conservation organization located within the confines of the City of Syracuse . Many prominent individuals have been members of our organization, including former Presidents Theodore Roosevelt and Ronald Regan. The Onondaga County Federation of Sportsmen’ Clubs was founded in 1951 to unify 33 member clubs throughout Onondaga County .The Anglers Association of Onondaga has been a member since its founding. They have participated in The Pheasants Afield Program, The North Eastern Sports Show, Wally Taber Shows, the Sportsmen’s’ March on Albany, The Oneida Lake Fishing Pier, and National Hunting and Fishing Day .
The Anglers Association of Onondaga also holds the copyrights to the Oneida Lake Fishing Maps, stemming from the group’s earlier association with Oneida Lake. Today the Anglers have been able to provide college scholarships in the biological related fields, magazine subscriptions, book donations and audio/visual tapes and equipment to the Betts Branch of the Onondaga Public Library, as well as hosting various groups of people at the pond. There are band concerts, arts & crafts shows during the summer. In addition beginning in 2010 the Association started sponsoring two children annually to a week long DEC camp where they can enjoy various outdoor activities including a NRA course and survival skills. We also offer the Junior Angler Fishing Program at the Pond for boys and girls 7-15 years of age. The program runs from the first Saturday in April, ending the last Saturday in September, 8AM-12NOON. The cost to fish is $10.00 a year per child Trophies are awarded at the annual banquet for the biggest trout and bass entries. . Juniors can catch and keep two trout per week of any size . Our adult fishing program was established in 2010. Opening day is the first Sunday in April until the last Sunday in September, ages 16 and up are eligible. The registration to fish is $15.00 a year, NYS fishing license required. The Anglers Association encompasses 250 junior and senior members. New members are always welcome and the membership cost is only $15.00 a year. Webster Pond is open to the public from sun up to sun down year around. Donations to The Anglers Association of Onondaga may be made at the pond.
We also offer school field trips. Please call ahead two weeks in advance for scheduling. Corn will be available to feed the waterfowl as well as a guided tour, weather permitting, of our private nature trail complete with handicap bridges. Benches are available for resting and to utilize should you bring food . Fieldtrips are free of charge… donations are always appreciated !.
Anglers Association of Onondaga INC.