In consideration of the extreme cold temperatures expected this weekend, the Detroit Lakes Breakfast Rotary Club has made the decision to postpone its annual Poles 'N Holes Ice Fishing Derby until Saturday, Feb. 13. It is the first event on the 2021 Polar Fest schedule to be postponed due to weather conditions.

"All registration for the Feb. 6 event was done online and those tickets will be honored at the derby next week," said organizer Brent Gerber in a press release issued Wednesday, Feb. 3. Tickets for the live derby had been limited to 250 due to pandemic safety considerations, and the event was sold out well in advance.

Gates will open at 9 a.m. next Saturday on Little Detroit Lake, and the derby will run from noon to 3 p.m. Rotary volunteers will also be out on the ice selling $10 tickets for their raffle, which is being held in conjunction with the live event. Raffle tickets can also be purchased in advance, from any Breakfast Rotarian or at any of the following locations: Lakes Sports Shop, Quality Bait and Tackle, County 6 Gas and Bait, Northshore Gas and Bait or Lakeland General Store.

In addition to the live derby, the club is conducting a virtual derby to be conducted through the Fish Donkey app — a free download available from most commercial app vendors including Google Play and the Apple App Store. Individuals can participate in both the live and virtual events simultaneously, Gerber noted, as the virtual derby begins Friday, Feb. 12 and ends Sunday, Feb. 14.

For information on ticket refunds, as well as further details on signing up for the virtual derby, please check the Poles 'N Holes Facebook page or go to their website,

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Polar Fest heats up

Despite the frigid temperatures, Detroit Lakes' Polar Fest celebration is heating up this week, with over a dozen events on the schedule through Monday, Feb. 15 (Presidents' Day).

The Noon Rotary Club's annual "Polar-riffic" Spaghetti Dinner is set for Tuesday, Feb. 9, with the Holiday Inn Lakefront as its new home. Serving will be from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m., and diners can choose between on-site, take home and delivery options.

"The delivery option is limited to within city limits," said Noon Rotary President Travis Stone. Cost is $10 per ticket; kids age 4 and under eat free, he added. To arrange for meal delivery, please call 218-234-2864.

Wednesday, Feb. 10 marks the return of the Polar Putt to Washington Square Mall. Local residents and visitors can test their putting skills in the main mall hallway between 11:30 a.m. and 1 p.m.; winners will take home gift cards for various mall businesses. (Pandemic safety guidelines will be enforced; please wear masks.)

Thursday and Friday, Feb. 11-12 is Chocolate Fantasy time at the Becker County Museum. Area residents can pick up a tray full of Valentine's Day-themed treats from the museum, or arrange for delivery by calling the museum at 218-847-2168 or visiting their online store at

The Detroit Lakes Public Library will be hosting a virtual presentation by photographer John Stember, "Living in the Ice Above the Arctic," at 7 p.m. Thursday via a live Facebook feed. There is no cost to participate.

Ice Tee Golf returns to Big Detroit Lake in front of the Holiday Inn at 1 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 12. Cost to participate is $100 per 4-person team; contact the Detroit Lakes Community & Cultural Center (DLCCC) at 218-844-4221 for more information.

Also scheduled for Friday night are Laser Tubing After Dark at Detroit Mountain Recreation Area, starting at 5 p.m., and Daddy-Daughter Date Night — the virtual version of Daddy's Little Sweetheart Dance — which will be hosted by the Historic Holmes Theatre starting at 6 p.m.

Saturday's schedule begins with the Freeze Your Buns Run, starting at 8 a.m. in the parking lot in front of the DLCCC; an old-fashioned radio play, "The Arrival of King Isbit," set to be broadcast at 10:30 a.m. on KDLM Radio (1340 AM); the Polar Fest Plunge, featuring "Proxy Plunger" Josh Duhamel, starting at 1 p.m.; and a 7 p.m. performance by comedian Tommy Ryman at the Historic Holmes Theatre.

The inaugural "Kool Kites on the Lake" event is set for noon Sunday, Feb. 14, on the ice of Little Detroit Lake near the DL Pavilion; and Tamarac National Wildlife Refuge will be hosting a "Sweetheart Snow Trek," departing at 1 p.m. from the Discovery Center.

A complete Polar Fest schedule is available online at, which is where you can also find registration information for any of the above-mentioned events.

Photo contest underway

Shutterbugs, head on over to the website and sign up for the inaugural Polar Fest Photo Contest. Submitted photos must be from a 2021 Polar Fest event or related activities, and there will be three winners selected by judges, along with a random drawing among all photos submitted for a fourth winner. Contestants must be at least 13 years of age to enter.

Multiple photos can be submitted, but each contestant can only win once. By entering the contest, entrants agree that photos submitted can be used by Polar Fest for advertising purposes. Photographer will keep all rights to any photos submitted and credit will be provided with each usage.

Photos may be digitally corrected and cropped from originals, but must not have any digitally added elements or effects not existing in the original scene, including text or imprinted dates.

Photographer must have the permission of anyone whose image appears in the photo before submitting. Contest closes at 11:59 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 19th. Submissions entered after this time will not be accepted.

Judging will take place the week of Feb. 22. Winners will be announced that week after judging is completed.