■ Tickets now available for Jaycees Ice Fishing Extravaganza
The Brainerd Jaycees 24th Annual $150,000 Ice Fishing Extravaganza is set for Jan. 25 on Gull Lake’s Hole in the Day Bay north of Brainerd.
This year’s prize list is valued at nearly $200,000. Contest tickets are available for a discounted price of $30 Nov. 1-30 at all Mills Fleet Farm locations and the Mills Indoor Shooting & Archery Center. As of Dec. 1, contest tickets will be available for $45 at all ticket outlets through the event date.
Returning this year is the “Catch of the Day Extravaganza Give-Away,” an additional contest within the extravaganza, giving participants the chance to win a prize package valued at $9,000 for an additional $5. These stamps can be purchased online and at Mills Fleet Farm in Baxter. If you cannot make it to the event, raffle tickets are available for $10 each and can be purchased at all Minnesota Mills Fleet Farm locations. The extravaganza raffle is valued at over $35,000.
The Brainerd Jaycees $150,000 Ice Fishing Extravaganza is completely volunteer run and all event proceeds are donated to area charities. The primary beneficiary is Confidence Learning Center, an outdoor recreational facility and camp for individuals with developmental disabilities. However, over 50 organizations in the Brainerd lakes area have received donations throughout the event’s history, which is set to tip the scales at $3 million in donations after the 2014 event.
More information and official updates can be found at www.icefishing.org.
■ Snowshoe weaving
workshop set for Dec. 7
HACKENSACK — A workshop on weaving traditional snowshoes will be offered from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. on Dec. 7 at Deep Portage Learning Center in Hackensack.
Participants will weave a set of traditional Ojibwe-style snowshoes. Kits include wooden frame and nylon lacing plus instruction. Instructors will be on hand to guide the process.
Cost of the workshop is $150 and includes the snowshoe kit, bindings, instruction, coffee, snacks and lunch. Registration is limited to 12 participants on a first-come, first-served basis. To register call Kathy Braswell at 218-682-2325.
■ Cold and wind greet hunters during first Camp Ripley hunt
CAMP RIPLEY — Archers took a two-day total of 181 deer during the first two-day bow hunt Oct. 26-27 at Camp Ripley Military Reservation near Little Falls.
“Breezy and colder than normal conditions greeted hunters and made it challenging for hunters to maximize their time in the field, with most of the hunters leaving by early-afternoon on Sunday. Nevertheless, hunters still did pretty well,” said Beau Liddell, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Little Falls area wildlife manager.
“For the 10th year in a row hunters were allowed to take up to two deer and to use bonus permits to increase harvest on antlerless deer,” he said. “Harvest is down about 13 percent from last year, but was similar to the harvest of 2009 when archers took 172 deer during the first hunt, and we are pleased that does and fawns comprised 68 percent of this year’s harvest.”
The total harvest thus far is similar to the long-term average harvest of 182 deer for the first hunt.
“Unless we get poor weather, we’re on pace to register another above average harvest for both hunts combined,” Liddell said.
There were 2,500 permits issued for the first hunt, with 2,193 hunters participating, for a participation rate of 88 percent (up from 82 percent last year). Hunter success was 8 percent (slightly below the long-term average of 10 percent for the first hunt), and four hunters took their bag limit of two deer.
“With 15 consecutive mild winters in this part of the state and strong harvests since 2000, Camp Ripley’s deer herd is in good condition. The weights of most fawns and yearling deer that were registered this weekend were heavier than they have been in recent years,” Liddell said.
The largest buck registered weighed 223 pounds, taken by Nicholas Witte of St. Peter. Of adult does registered, the largest weighed in at 138 pounds, taken by Michael Haubenschild of Austin.
The second two-day hunt is scheduled for this coming weekend, Nov. 2-3. The DNR coordinates the hunts with the Department of Military Affairs, which manages the 53,000-acre military reservation.