Officials with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources say the annual $25,000 Winterfest Ice Fishing Derby is set to take place one-week from this Saturday, near Council Bluffs. The event will be held at Lake Manawa State Park, Saturday, January 26th from 7-a.m. to 1-p.m., with derby participants fishing for the biggest fish they can catch, as well as tagged fish worth up to $25,000.
Numerous door prizes will be given away as well as prizes for the biggest fish in youth and adult categories of bluegill, catfish, crappie, drum, walleye and wiper. Prizes will also be given for a chili cook-off and ice house decorating contest.
Volunteers are busy preparing for the derby and excited that the ice is seven to eight inches in most places on the lake! Shannon Meister, chair of the Winterfest Ice Fishing Derby Committee, says while several hundred people have registered so far, there is still plenty of room for more. Registration will be open the morning of the derby from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. for $20 per person.
“Recycled Fish” will host an Ice Bash Friday, January 25th from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. for food, ice fishing tips, seminars and door prizes at the Hy-Vee on Broadway. For more information and ice conditions, surf the web to www.winterfestderby.com. Or, contact the Lake Manawa State Park Office at (712) 366-0220.