This committee promotes fish populations in the Chain O’Lakes waters through various efforts including, but not limited to, stocking native fish populations and repairing, adding, and preserving fish habitats. Providing youth with educational and hands-on experiences.
Committee Chair(s): Barry Gill, Mark Kunstman
2023 Waupaca Chain O'Lakes Association
Fishing Derby Entries
WCOLA Fish Derby 2023 Wrap-Up By Co-Chairs Mark Kunstman and Barry Gill The first WCOLA fishing derby was a great success! During the period from Memorial Day to Labor Day 58 young fisherman submitted a total of 82 entries. Some sponsors (parents, grandparents) had more than one child and in one case a sponsor/family submitted entries for 8 of their grandkids which was wonderful and those kids will have great lifelong memories fishing with their cousins. A few interesting statistics: Fish caught by Lake: Beasley 2, Columbia 11, Dake 10, Long 8, McCrossen 21, Miner 1, Otter 12, Ottman 1, Rainbow 6, Sunset 7 and Taylor 3. Fish caught by month: May - 1, June - 12, July - 40, August - 28, and September - 1. As is often the case when a new event is developed, there were some ananticipated happenings that will be improved upon for next year. Initially, we thought we could make categories out of age groups, but many people did not list the ages on the form. It took a bit of research in some cases to determine what kids went with what sponsors. We will have a better registration form and process which will include asking for more information to advance the derby next year including an improved method of determining the winners. For this year’s derby, given that we did not have fish measurements or ages of all the children, we thought the most equitable way to award the 12 $100 Waupaca Chamber of Commerce gift certificates would be through a random drawing of all participants. The fish sustainability committee felt that everyone who submitted a picture and did not win should also receive a reward. It was decided that they will receive a $5.00 Scoopers gift card, something we had not planned on doing but that will hopefully put a smile on the faces of all the young fishermen who participated. Ultimately, the goal of getting kids out with their families to experience the lifetime joy of fishing was certainly met in our first derby. We would like to thank everyone for making this such a great success! Stay tuned in the Spring of 2024 for announcements for the 2nd annual fishing derby. The Fish Sustainability Sub Committee of the Waupaca Chain O' Lakes Association is dedicated to promoting fish populations in our waters through various efforts, including stocking native fish populations, repairing, adding, and preserving fish habitats. We also aim to provide youth with educational and hands-on experiences