Top prize won at Lions fishing contest with crappie

 The three biggest fish at the Princeton Lions fishing contest on Green Lake Sunday, Feb. 2, each weighed about half a pound.

Joel Stottrup / Union-Eagle Greg Wierschke and his daughter Corina, of Elk River, fishing at the Lions fishing contest.

Joel Stottrup / Union-Eagle
Greg Wierschke and his daughter Corina, of Elk River, fishing at the Lions fishing contest.

Josh Wudtke, of Zimmerman, won the $1,000 grand prize with a 0.59 pound crappie. Second place went to Joe Ahner with a 0.53 pound crappie, while Mike Thies took third with a 0.51 pound crappie. The next five places were crappies as well, with the smallest at 0.40 pound. Perches rounded out the ninth and 10th places, one weighing 0.26 pound and the other 0.20 pound

Approximately 500 people participated in the annual tournament, according to Lions member Scott Liestman, who headed the contest. The attendance wasn’t any record for the Lions fishing event but was better than last year when a snowstorm dominated.

Liestman said he was worried about this year’s contest when he awoke the morning of it and saw it was 18 below zero.

But the temperatures climbed and it wasn’t too bad despite a cold breeze when the contest was going 1-4 p.m., Liestman noted.

Many seemed to have a good time even if they didn’t catch a fish. There was the concession stand with pulled pork, and if anyone wanted to buy into a drawing for the prizes donated by area businesses, there were plenty. There were a total of 95 prizes for a total value exceeding $19,000, according to Liestman.

“We can’t thank enough all the businesses who donated,” he said.

Liestman did not yet have a figure for how much profit the Lions made on the contest.

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