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Get involved in 'Let's Go Fishing'

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Brad Laabs Detroit Lakes, 56501
Detroit Lakes Minnesota 511 Washington Avenue 56501

I had a great visit this last week with Dave Hochhalter, President of the Detroit Lakes Chapter of "Let's Go Fishing." I am so impressed with our area chapter and the volunteers that make this program such a success.

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The Chapter was started in 2008 and in the inaugural year they completed 10 trips. In 2009 they doubled the number of trips and people served to a good time fishing on the big pontoon.

This summer, the chapter completed 68 trips. Out of 27 chapters, this was the sixth most, and in just three years. They would have done several more trips, but you all remember some of the weather this summer we had to contend with, so of course, several trips were cancelled.

Out of the 68 trips, 51 were fishing trips and 17 were scenic excursions. A total of 31 different organizations were served. A dozen trips were done just for youth, and 141 young people got to experience a "Let's Go Fishing "outing. The number of adults came in at a staggering 529 for a total of 670 people.

Dave figured the total volunteer hours are over 520 just on the trips. He anticipates completing 80 trips next summer. I think they will surpass that number based on the growth over the last two years.

Many community organizations have stepped up to help make this happen. The chapter will need continued support, as the expenses for running the program will continue to increase. The chapter could use additional volunteer help as well as financial assistance.

I hope Dave gets flooded with calls as I am going to give you his number so you can get involved or help out this great organization. You can call Dave at: 218-847-5670. You can call John Fugesten if you are interested in booking an outing at: 218-844-5106.      

You can visit the "Let's Go Fishing" website at lgfws.com. You will get information about the programs and list of all the chapters in Minnesota. You can click on the Detroit Lakes chapter and look at photos, get updated on events, contact the chapter by email, or schedule an event.

I will write about this chapter in the spring to remind you to take advantage of  this program. Just thought you should know what a great community we live in and how many people do so much for so many without getting much recognition for what they do.

A special shout out goes out to Bob Collins and Tim Miller as they both went on 18 of the 68 trips. Wow, that is commitment to the program.

(Laabs runs Brad Laabs Guide Service in Detroit Lakes.)

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