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Things to do in the lakes area this month

Country music star Chris Hawkey will perform live at Mahnomen’s Shooting Star Casino, Hotel & Event Center this Friday, Feb. 9, at 8 p.m. (Submitted photo)1 / 3
Minneapolis comedian Tommy Ryman will perform at Detroit Lakes' Historic Holmes Theatre this coming Saturday, Feb. 10 at 7:30 p.m. (Submitted photo)2 / 3
The Twin Cities-based band Ginstrings will perform live at Ulen's Top Hat Theatre on Saturday, Feb. 10 at 7:30 p.m. (Submitted photo)3 / 3

Acclaimed comedian Ryman coming to DL Feb. 10

DETROIT LAKES — Detroit Lakes' Historic Holmes Theatre will welcome acclaimed comedian Tommy Ryman to its stage on Saturday, Feb. 10 at 7:30 p.m. As part of the annual Polar Fest activities, Ryman's act is sure to warm you up with fun, laughter, and maybe even a few tears.

Tommy Ryman grew up with a new-age, folksinging mother and a traditional, Lutheran insurance-agent father. This XY equation evidently equals: acclaimed comedian.

Ryman has earned the title of Semifinalist on NBC's Last Comic Standing. His act can be described as absurdist and clever, masked behind a very likable and innocent demeanor, often thought of as disturbingly adorable. He is a favorite among audiences at top clubs, colleges, and companies around the nation, and he is regularly featured on Rooftop Comedy, SiriusXM, and iheartradio.

Ryman recently won the title of Best in the Midwest at the prestigious Gilda's Laugh Fest. He was invited to perform at the Great American Comedy Festival at the Johnny Carson Theater, and was featured as one of the "Twin Cities' Funniest People" by Metro Magazine. Ryman has two albums on StandUp! Records. Ryman's unique humorous storytelling and comedy stylings should not be missed.

Sponsored by Lakeridge Dental, tickets to Saturday's show are $20 for adults and $10 for students. They may be purchased online at, by phone atl 218-844-7469, or in person at the Holmes Theatre Box Office, located at 806 Summit Ave., Detroit Lakes.

Chris Hawkey at Shooting Star Friday

MAHNOMEN — Minnesota's own country music star, Chris Hawkey, will perform live at Mahnomen's Shooting Star Casino, Hotel & Event Center this Friday, Feb. 9, at 8 p.m.

Tickets start at $10 and are on sale now. They can be purchased by phone at 1-800-313-SHOW (7469), online at, or via the "Buy Tickets" tab on Shooting Star's Facebook page:

Chris Hawkey caught his first big break in 2001, when he became the new co-host and producer of the number-one-rated radio morning show in the Twin Cities, Power Trip Morning Show. In his spare time, Hawkey began pursuing his true passion — music — and launched two solo albums in 2001 and 2006.

In 2010, Hawkey became the lead singer of Rocket Club, a country music band with a rock edge. Playing what they called, "North Country," Rocket Club developed a solid following in the Midwest, releasing four albums and landing three songs on the country singles charts. But the band failed to land a major label record deal, and in 2014, Hawkey left the group.

He wasted no time launching a solo career as a country artist, and released a self-titled album that same year, winning airplay for the song, "My Kinda Crazy." Hawkey dropped his second album "Country Underneath," in 2015, followed by his third album, "Shine," in 2016. Hawkey released his new hit single, "Happy," in 2017.

Hawkey and his band continue to entertain country audiences and sports enthusiasts alike as they tour their pre-game acoustic series across Minnesota.

Ginstrings coming to Ulen's Top Hat Theatre

ULEN — On Saturday, Feb. 10, Ulen's Top Hat Theatre will welcome the Twin Cities band Ginstrings to its stage for a 7:30 p.m. show.

A four-member string band from that originally was formed as a traditional bluegrass group, the ensemble now has expanded beyond that scope. Containing members from diverse musical backgrounds, rich warm harmonies accompany their tasteful melodies and imaginative rhythms. Ginstrings composes original music that all listeners will enjoy. Their intriguing tunes and passionate performance are sure to resonate with your soul. For more information, visit

Tickets are available online at at a price of $15 for adults and $10 for students. You can also reserve tickets by sending an email to or by phone at 218-596-8853.

It's fishing derby time!

The 8th annual Detroit Lakes Breakfast Rotary Club's "Poles and Holes Fishing Derby" is just around the corner! Fishing lines will drop at noon this Saturday, Feb. 10 on Little Detroit Lake.

Gates open at 9 a.m., with the derby running from noon to 3 p.m.; this year's top prize, out of $40,000 in prizes available, is a 6x14-foot Ice Castle fish house. Other fishing derby prizes include cash, augers, vacations, event tickets, sporting gear, etc. A separate raffle is held in conjunction with the derby. Prizes up for grabs on the raffle include a Polaris Sportsman, a kayak, a generator, bar height Bistro set, Poles and Holes bean bag set, Green Egg grill and more. Come enjoy the atmosphere with a revolving ice carousel, four wheeler displays, ice castle displays, spirit tasting, food, drinks, door prizes and more excitement!

Other events associated with the derby are the pre-party at The Hub 41 in Detroit Lakes on Feb. 9 beginning at 7 p.m. An "indoor fishing derby" with prizes, door prizes and food and drink specials abound. The post-party is at the Holiday Inn, beginning at 3 p.m. following the derby on Saturday, with derby and raffle prizes awarded, door prizes, live music and food and drink specials.

Tickets, $35 in advance and $40 on ice (a second line can be purchased for $20), are available at Gene's in Perham; Lakes Sport Shop, Quality Bait and County 6 Tesoro all in Detroit Lakes and at the Lake Place in Lake Park. Tickets and more event information are available online at

Eelpout Festival coming to Walker

WALKER — Stir crazy is an understatement when describing the more than 12,000 participants and visitors who descend on Walker, Minn. (pop. 1,069), for four days every February for the International Eelpout Festival.

Entering into its 39th year, the 2018 festival officially begins at 6 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 22 and concludes at noon on Sunday, Feb. 25.

The festival, always a spectacle, is known for providing a mid-winter respite for the many hearty Midwesterners looking for an outlet during a long Minnesota winter. The revelry and gamesmanship that ensues has drawn the curiosity of thousands of outdoor enthusiasts and countless media outlets over the years. At the center of the Eelpout Festival is the long-held tradition of angling the world's only true gamefish and one of the ugliest bottom dwelling catches out there — the Eelpout!

NEW this year, all activities and Eelpout events will be in one convenient location! Join us in front of The Chase on the Lake ... in the tent or on the ice you'll find one of a kind "Chase the Pout" events including:

• Opening Ceremonies (Thursday starting at 6 p.m.): Live music from "The Roosters" in the Chase 502 Bar and Pre-Pout Kick-Off Party in the Chase Tent.

• Pout Curling (Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m.-1 p.m.) at Chase on the Lake Tent: Patrons can throw "The Eelpout Rock" and try "sweeping" to victory. Walker's local curling club facilitates the "stone-pout" throws and button landings.

• Fifth Annual Eelpout Beer Pong (Qualifiers Friday, 3-7 p.m./Championship Saturday, 3 p.m.): A Festival favorite! $40 gets your 2-person team into this bracket-style/single elimination contest. Prizes include cash, Eelpout Trophy and merch. For more information and to register, go to:

Eelpout Rugby (Saturday 10 a.m.-5 p.m.): Bemidji State Rugby Teams will take to the ice to capture the 2017 Eelpout Rugby crown. Join us on the ice in front of The Chase.

• Polar Pout Plunge (Saturday 1-3 p.m.; registration at noon): Thanks to a chainsaw crew that cuts through 18 inches of ice to prepare a "soft landing," countless costumed revelers are cheered on by a massive crowd as they plunge into the frozen depths of Leech Lake. Money raised benefits the Walker Area Community Center.

• Dog Sled Rides (Saturday 11 a.m.-4 p.m.) — Experience a K-9 led tour of the grounds ... and so mush more!

• Helicopter Rides (Saturday, 12-5 p.m.): Located by City Park

• Eelpout Weigh In: This unique "cultural submersion" operates daily, capped with an awards ceremony on Sunday (11am) in front of The Chase and includes thousands of dollars in prizes for the most pout pounds.

• Fourth Annual Kids Perch Jerk (Saturday, 12-1 p.m.): Savings bonds will be awarded to three biggest perch caught. Holes will be drilled for the kids. Parents, just bring poles and bait.

All participants must be registered and have in their possession an official International Eelpout Festival button, which may be purchased at the registration tent at Walker City Park or at participating Walker area businesses. Cost of a button is $18. Visit the official site at: for more information.