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Hooks and Antlers: Ice fishing derbies abound in February


February is the area’s most popular month for ice fishing derbies, and today’s column gives the run down on seven derbies on tap for the next two weekends.

Chippewa Bay Derby

The Chippewa Bay F&G Club’s Annual Open-Boundary Ice Fishing Derby will take place on Saturday with fishing hours from 6 a.m. to 4 p.m. Anglers can preregister ($10 for adults and $5 for youths) at the clubhouse on Friday from 5 p.m. through the evening at which time Bad Husbands Club will provide music. Anglers can also register at the clubhouse on the morning of the event.

Divisions include Adult Northern Pike, Youth Northern Pike, and Catch-and-Release Pike. For pike to qualify in the various divisions, the fish must measure a minimum of 24 inches.

A unique feature of the Chippewa Derby is that all prizes will be awarded via a lottery system. Top prize in the Adult Pike Division is a $1,000 gift certificate donated by Route 37 Building Supply and Wellesley Island Building Supply.

Youth prizes include $250 donated by Felder’s Roofing, half-day fishing charter donated by Captain Dave Gascon of Fun-2-Fish Charters, and $100 donated by Gerald Umstead. Prizes in the Catch-and-Release Division (pike must be caught in Chippewa Bay) include $900 gas grill donated by Garlock Lumber, a gas auger donated by CPR, and $50 by Craig McLear of Butternut Cottages.

Waddington Derby

The Waddington Sons of the American Legion are hosting the 13th annual Ice Fishing Derby at Coles Creek on Saturday.

Fishing boundaries extend from Iroquois Dam to Coles Creek, and anglers can pre-register ($25 for adults and free for youths under 16) at the American Legion Post on Fenton Street, Green Machine Bait and Tackle, Upstrom’s Bait and Tackle on Rookey Road, or at the weigh-in station at Coles Creek Marina.

Among the $2,000 in cash and prizes to be awarded are $500 for the largest northern pike, $200 for second biggest pike, $100 for third largest pike, $50 for the heaviest walleye, $50 for the biggest perch, and $50 for the best decorated ice shack. For more information, call 250-5252.

Millens Bay Derby

The Chaumont Knights of Columbus is hosting its First Annual Ice Fishing Tournament on Saturday at Millens Bay Inn and Millens Bay Marina. The event has open boundaries, and fishing hours run from dawn to 4 p.m. Adult registration is $10 while youths can fish for free. Top prizes for the heaviest pike or walleye in the adult division are $250 cash, $150 cash, and $100 in merchandise.

Top prizes for the heaviest perch in the youth division are $100 cash, $75 cash, and $50 in merchandise. Door prizes will also be awarded at Millens Bay Inn at 4 p.m. For more information, call 783-2244.

Sackets Harbor Derby

The Sackets Harbor Sons of the American Legion are sponsoring their fifth annual Northern Pike Ice Fishing Derby on Saturday with fishing hours beginning at dawn. The event has both adult and youth divisions with prizes being awarded for the three largest fish in each division.

Anglers can register ($10) and get more information at the Sackets Harbor American Legion, Sackets Harbor Country Mart, or Chaumont Hardware.

Clayton Derby

The Clayton Fire Department and Knights of Columbus 350 are teaming up for the ninth annual Catch-and-Release Clayton Fishing Derby on Feb. 15.

The event has open boundaries, and fishing hours run from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m. Anglers can register ($10 for adults and $5 for under 12)) at the Knights of Columbus on Feb. 14 from 4 p.m. until closing and at the Clayton Fire Department on Saturday from 5-10 a.m. The Fire Department will also serve as the awards site at 5 p.m.

In the Pike Division, luck-of-the-draw prizes will be awarded for fish measuring 26 inches and longer.

Prizes will be also awarded in the Youth Perch Division. Among the prizes is a drawing for an ice auger donated by Don’s Prop Shop. For more information, call 771-3533 or 767-4497.

Wheathouse Bay Derby

Howie’s and FISHCAP are teaming up for the Battle at the Bay Derby in Ogdensburg’s Wheathouse Bay on Feb. 15 with fishing hours extending from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Proceeds from the event will benefit Wounded Warriors Outdoor Adventures and Ogdensburg Volunteer Rescue Squad.

The adult registration fee is $25 before Feb. 9 and $30 after that date. Youth registration for those 15 and under is $10. First, second, and third prizes will be awarded hourly, and the amount of those cash prizes will be based on number of entrants.

In addition, $500 will be awarded for the biggest walleye and $500 for the largest pike. Major sponsors include Cappione Inc. and Blevins Brothers RV Center. Prizes will be awarded at 5 p.m. at Howie’s. For more information, call 393-3669.

Plessis Derby

The Plessis Annual Fishing Derby will also take place on Feb. 15, and this derby is a ”Luck of the Draw” event with open boundaries.

Registration fee is $10 for adults and $5 for youths. Pike in the adult division ($500 first-place prize) must measure a minimum of 24 inches while pike in the youth division ($350 prize) must measure a minimum of 22 inches. The Plessis Fire Hall will serve as derby headquarters.

Outdoors Calendar

Saturday: Annual Chippewa Bay Ice Fishing Derby.

Saturday: Waddington Sons of American Legion’s 13th Annual Ice Fishing Derby (250-5252).

Saturday: Chaumont K of C’s First Annual Ice Fishing Derby (783-2244).

Saturday: Sackets Harbor Sons of American Legion Derby.

Feb. 15: Wheathouse Bay Battle of the Bay Ice Fishing Derby (393-3669).

Feb. 15: Clayton FD and K of C’s 9th Annual Catch and Release Ice Fishing Derby (771-3533).

Feb. 15: Plessis Annual Luck of the Draw Ice Fishing Derby.

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