LMNG&F 18th Annual Catch and Release Walleye Classic by Revy Rodriguez The Walleye Derby is the largest derby that the Lake Manitoba Narrows Game an

         
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LMNG&F 18th Annual Catch and Release Walleye Classic

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195 Participants for the Walleye Classic! A Club record attendance! (photo:Sherry Giesbrecht)

by Revy Rodriguez

The Walleye Derby is the largest derby that the Lake Manitoba Narrows Game and Fish hosts. It averages 150 people each year and it is a great event to end the fishing season!

Each year the derby gets bigger and better but this year was our highest attendance in club history!

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Photo By:Sherry Giesbrecht Thank You Twin Motors and Parkland Yamaha for joining us for our derby!

This year the Walleye Classic incorporated a few new aspects to the derby, making the event even more enjoyable for participants and the local community. This year Parkland Yamaha and Twin Motors from Dauphin joined us for the day! They brought with them trucks, a boat, a quad, a gorgeous portable shed for people to tour through and and all sorts of other fun "toys". I want to thank the staff at Parkland Yamaha and Twin Motors Dauphin for coming out and spending the day with us, for the amazing display and their generous donations to the silent auction! You made the event more special and we thank you!

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Thank you to Whitney Rudd, Delaine Figur, Joy Sigurdson and Rosie Bilkoski for helping with derby registration! Photo By:Sherry Giesbrecht

Another change to the derby this year was our staging area. This year we marked off a designated staging area for all participants to start from and end at. Participants were instructed to have their boats inside the area from the shoreline to an imaginary line from the hydro causeway to the bridge causeway. It was a fantastic site to see the boats race out to their "lucky" spots as the 8 am horn blew. It was well received by the participants and something we as a club would like to continue. With the continued growth of the derbies our staging area will encompass both sides of the bridge to allow room for all participants.

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Thank You Marc Ghantous, Clancy Solomon, George Unrau, and Dwayne Germain for checking boats at the staging area! Photo By:Janice Bell

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Photo By:Janice Bell

After the success of the Ladies Derby having the weigh station on the small dock parallel to the marina, as opposed to the rocky launch area, we used that same location for the Walleye Classic. This allowed up to four boats to come in at once and with the aid of our volunteers on the dock and at the weigh station, we were able to assist participants with holding their boats, and getting themselves and their fish off safely and quickly into the weigh station. Due to this year's low water levels, our marina volunteers were also available to point out any possible dangers as boats came in to the dock. We had positive comments about the relocation of the weigh station this year! Thank you to Dennis Giesbrecht, Bernie Hildebrand, and Gord Feakes for their hard work at the weigh station and dock, as well as Chad Olafson and Grant Henderson for their help with directing boat traffic and assisting participants as they came to the weigh station.

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Look at those faces! Photo: Janice Bell

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"Walleye Thugs" with matching hoodies and boat! Photo: Janice Bell

 
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On the lake, the weather could not have been better for those in the derby and with little wind, it was perfect fishing conditions. To warm up the bellies of our participants, there was hot chili and a bun for purchase on the weigh station and many grabbed a bowl before heading back out on the water. Thank you Joy Sigurdson, Debbie Olafson, Mary Hildebrand and Anne Feakes who volunteered for lunch.

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Thank you Anne and Mary!

 
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Thank you Delaine Figur!

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Thank you Clancy Solomon and Dan Thibeault for your help with the derby!

 
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Family of 5 out on the water! What a great day to spend with the kids!

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Back on land, with the Parkland Yamaha/Twin Motors display as our backdrop, Narrows West Lodge opened up their bar patio to create a beer garden atmosphere with the Bomber game playing in the background during the day and music during the awards, silent auction, and dinner. The silent auction yielded some of the biggest prizes in Walleye Classic history and was a hit with all that visited it. With over 40 silent auction prizes and 5 grand prizes equaling almost $2,000.00 in value, people were excited to try their luck at winning a custom fire pit ring donated by Wallin Industries, a mini beer fridge donated by Narrows West or a Cuisinart BBQ valued at $650 donated by Dauphin Canadian Tire and LMNG&F.

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Silent Auction Prizes were fantastic this year! (photo: Sherry Giesbrecht)

 
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5 incredible Grand Prizes this year! (photo:Janice Bell)

 
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Thank you to Sue Richter, Sherry Giesbrecht, Rosie Bilkoski, Delaine Figur and Jessica Rank for helping with the silent auction!

 
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Sponsor Wall for 18th Annual Walleye Classic

Walleye Classic Awards

At 4:00 pm the horn announced the end of the derby and the participants began to flood in. It was a moment I will never forget! Seeing participants stop and look at the boat display, see the silent auction prizes for the first time and congregate on the grass with a cool drink and tons of great fishing stories! It was my favorite part of the day because you could see at that moment the success of the event and the fun was just getting started. With a club record attendance, we also had a record pay out.

Of the 109 fish recorded during the day, Ian White, caught a master walleye that weighed 8.56 lbs and earned him $3,217.50 and first place. 2nd place went to 17 year old, Jayden Kreller with a 7.52 lb walleye and $1,930.50 in cash. 3rd place was won by Corey Petrash with a 7 lb walleye. He received $1,287.00 in cash. This year we increased our hidden weight prize money and had two hidden weights. The winner of the $300 4-lb hidden weight was Jon Cooley with a 3.88 lb walleye. The winner of the $200 3-lb hidden weight was Carlson Murdock with a 2.90 lb walleye.

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1st place - Ian White (8.56 lbs walleye, $3,217.50 cash prize) Photo: Janice Bell

 
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The "real" winner the 8.56 lb master walleye that made everyone jealous! What a beautiful fish! photo:Janice Bell

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2st place - Jayden Kreller (7.52 lb walleye, $1,930.50 cash prize) Photo: Janice Bell

 
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3rd place - Corey Petrash (7 lb walleye, $1,287.00 cash prize) Photo: Janice Bell

 
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The winner of the $300 4-lb hidden weight was Jon Cooley with a 3.88 lb walleye. photo:Janice Bell

 
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The winner of the $200 3-lb hidden weight was Carlson Murdock with a 2.90 lb walleye. photo:Janice Bell

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LMNGF also had 4 draw prizes for those that fished in the derby!

 
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Prizes consisted of dip nets and gloves, rods, reels and hats as well as filleting boards and knives!

 
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Photo By:Janice Bell

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This year the club added another fun touch to the awards. A wooden filleting board was donated to be used as our Walleye Classic "Conservation Prize" plaque. We drew a name from those participants that were unable to catch a fish in the derby. This year's winner, Donna Heintzman, received a gift certificate for Gimli Fish and will be the first engraved name to be added to the plaque.

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After awards and prizes we ended the day with a pig roast supper. The pig was generously donated by Danny's Whole Hog and was amazing!

walleye Derby Sponsor Thank You
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