The Great Rotary Fishing Derby Returns—with a New Angle for 2013!Posted on February 1st, 2013 No comments
Next weekend, ice fishermen, their families, and friends will gather in Meredith from all over the country and beyond to participate in one of the most well attended events in New Hampshire. The Great Rotary Ice Fishing Derby has been drawing crowds to Lake Winnipesaukee for almost 35 years, with fishermen hoping to snag the heaviest tagged rainbow trout in order to claim the grand prize. However, this year is a little different, as the prize structure and the rules for the 2013 Fishing Derby have changed.
This year’s Great Rotary Fishing Derby will take place February 9th and 10th, with headquarters on Meredith Bay. The Meredith Rotary Club has opened up the field to create more opportunities for participants to win. By eliminating the tagged rainbow trout as the only possible winner category for the top three prizes and opening the prize structure to all Derby ticket holders, the Derby is more accessible to everyone. Now, the largest fish of each of the eligible species (white perch, yellow perch, cusk, lake trout, pickerel, black crappie, or rainbow trout) will be entered in the grand prize drawings, and a grand-prize winning fish can be caught in any fresh water open to the public. There will be less pressure to fish only in Lake Winnipesaukee, and less impact on the off-season salmon. Additionally, for the 2013 Derby, the Rotary Club will be providing all cash prizes, instead of items such as a fishing boat or ATV as in years past.
The three top prizes will be awarded to the angler with a valid Derby ticket whose name is drawn on Sunday during the Grand Prize Drawing. First prize is $15,000, second prize is $5,000, and third prize is $3,000. Those who had the largest fish in each category on either Saturday or Sunday of Derby Weekend will be eligible.
“Remember, you don’t have to fish to win cash prizes,” says Jim Nagle, Derby Chairman for 2013. “Everyone who purchases a $30 Derby Ticket has the opportunity to win hundreds of dollars in cash prizes throughout the weekend. Additionally, there are two $5,000 cash drawings during the Derby.”
On Saturday, February 9th, The Meredith Rotary Ice Fishing Derby will host the “Let’s Go Fishing” program in conjunction with the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department. This is a free hands-on clinic for kids and their parents on the basics of ice fishing, developed by the Fish and Game Department and presented by Karina Walsh, Program Coordinator at the organization.
The two-day ice fishing competition is one of the top fund-raising events in the state, enabling The Meredith Rotary Club to donate more than $1.5 million back into the community for charitable projects, area improvements, scholarships, and families in need. The Rotary Club, in consultation with the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department, also stocks tagged fish in several New Hampshire Lakes as part of an ongoing fisheries management plan.
After the derby, any unwanted fish are donated to The Squam Lakes Natural Science Center in Holderness, NH, where they are kept frozen and fed to the otters, raptors, and other animals who love these special “trout-cicle” treats!
Tickets for the Great Meredith Rotary Ice Fishing Derby available to purchase online at the Meredith Rotary website through February 6th, and are also available at a wide variety of vendors throughout New Hampshire. Beginning on Friday, February 8th at 8 am, tickets will be available at the Rotary Derby Headquarters trailer in Meredith.
“This will mark the 34th year of the Ice Fishing Derby,” says Nagle, “and with our new rules and prize structure that includes more than $50,000 in cash prizes, we are expecting a big crowd and a great time to be had by all.”
The Mill Falls Blogging TeamLocal Events, Meredith, New Hampshire Events and Activities Fishing Derby, Lake Winnipesaukee, Meredith, Meredith Rotary Club, NH Fish and Game
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