Poles 'N Holes ice fishing derby draws 650 anglers of all ages
The Detroit Lakes Breakfast Rotary Club's 12th Annual Poles 'N Holes ice fishing derby is in the books, and despite "sometimes brutal" conditions, the Polar Fest event drew more than 650 participants, who reeled in over 150 fish on Feb. 19.
For more than a decade, the Detroit Lakes Polar Fest celebration has included an ice fishing derby, courtesy of the local Breakfast Rotary Club — and the 2022 Poles 'N Holes Fishing Derby took place as scheduled on Feb. 19, despite inhospitable weather that led to a slightly later-than-normal gate opening.
"Over 650 participants braved the cold to compete in the 12th Annual Poles 'N Holes," said Breakfast Rotary member Brent Gerber, who was one of the organizers of the event.
Gerber noted that weather conditions were "sometimes brutal" for the derby, which took place during the afternoon. Last-minute weather-related cancellations from some vendors also made food and beverages harder to find than normal, for both participants and spectators.
"But despite that, nearly 150 total fish (somewhat smaller in size this year) were registered," Gerber said, and an "interesting battle" took place to see who would earn the 30 prizes that were awarded at the conclusion of the derby.
In the end, Ben Steidl of Miltona, Minn., earned the top prize — a 2022 Polaris Sportsman 4-wheeler — after reeling in a northern weighing 1.8 pounds.
Full results can be found online at icefishingdetroitlakes.org .
Polar Fest 2022 wraps up this weekend in Detroit Lakes, with the Polar Fest Plunge, Frozen Fireworks, Sweetheart Sundae Dance and more. A full schedule, and more information about specific events, can be found online at polarfestdl.com .
This will also be the final weekend to view the MN Sn'Ice Palace and surrounding snow and ice sculptures, including an ice maze, media desk and poetry walk. Live camera feeds of all the action surrounding the ice palace can be found online at iceharvestdl.org .