Fishing tourney raises funds for Flowage
January 20, 2020
GILE, Wis. - Ice fishing enthusiasts from as far away as Green Bay came to the Gile Flowage Saturday for the third annual Ice Fishing Jamboree.
Organized by the Bank Club, the tournament had anglers competing to catch the largest pike, walleye, crappie and perch.
Joe Smoczyk, one of the tournament's organizers, said the 52 anglers participating was down from last year but Saturday's snowstorm probably kept some people off the ice. The weather also likely kept the fish from biting aggressively, limiting the catch.
"The diehard fisherman stayed out, snow doesn't really scare them much," he said.
Nevertheless, Smoczyk said it seemed everyone had a good time.
"It's a good winter activity, and a lot of people have fun (during the tournament)," he said adding it was also family friendly, with a lot of kids running around the various shanties out on the ice.
The tournament paid out four places in the northern pike and walleye divisions, with the biggest northern measuring 25 inches and the biggest walleye measuring 19.75 inches.
A single crappie, measuring 10.25 inches, earned prize money in its division.
No anglers reported catching a perch.
After the tournament ended, participants were able to go to the Bank Club for a meal and every participant won a door prize.
Along with a chance to get out and fish on the ice, the tournament also raises money for a good cause.
Through donating the proceeds of the 50-50 raffle and a portion of the tournament entry fees, Smoczyk said the tournament raised $400 for the Friends of the Gile Flowage.
Smoczyk said that since many locals enjoy fishing or boating on the Gile, it is important to support the organization's efforts to stock the body of water with fish, make habitat improvements and complete general Flowage maintenance.
He also thanked the community and local businesses for all the support that makes the tournament possible each year.