Dec. 10, 2001 For further information contact:
On Ice Tour – P. O. Box 517 Chip Leer or Tommy Skarlis
Walker, MN 56484 (218) 547-4714
ON ICE OLYMPICS COMING TO BRAINERD MINNESOTA
Exciting On Ice Contest for Youths
WALKER, MINN. – The waters of Gull Lake may be frozen solid, but the competition on top of the ice will be hot when On Ice Tour presents the On Ice Olympics in conjunction with the $150,000.00 Brainerd Jaycees Ice Fishing Extravaganza Jan. 19, 2002. Up to 15,000 anglers will turn out for the Brainerd contest, which raises money to support learning centers throughout the region, including Camp Confidence in Brainerd.
Most of those anglers know how to fish and have fun. Chip Leer and Tommy Skarlis, co-founders of On Ice Tour, hope to introduce a new generation of hard-water enthusiasts to a sport that is growing in popularity by leaps and bounds.
“We’re going to provide a place and a format for people to experience modern ice fishing that they may not have had access to before,” said Leer. “We decided to create the On Ice Olympics not only to supplement what is already a great contest the Brainerd Jaycees put on, but to get youth interested and excited about the sport, as well as to share it with anyone else who may be interested but has never had the opportunity to pursue it.”
The On Ice Olympics will take place from 9-11 a.m. in four age divisions.
Dozens of prizes, courtesy of On Ice Tour sponsors Coleman, Berkley, Abu Garcia, Aqua Vu, StrikeMaster Ice Augers, Clam Corp. USL Products, Lindy, Northland, Finicky’s Fish Factory, Bill Lindner Photography and Gemini Sport Marketing, Inc. Medals and additional prizes will be awarded to top finishers.
There is no charge to participate, and events are designed to simulate ice fishing experiences, such as setting up a portable tent, cleaning slush from a hole, species identification and landing fish.
All youths, whether they arrive individually or in groups, must be accompanied by at least one adult and should come dressed appropriately for the weather. Parents are invited to accompany kids through the course.
Leer and Skarlis are two of the Midwest’s foremost ice fishing experts and enthusiasts, and they’ll be available to talk ice fishing to anyone who will listen. But the focus of the event is the On Ice Olympics, and the youth who will participate.
“From my guiding experience in the summertime to taking kids out in the wintertime, youth are one of the reasons I fish,” says Leer. “Nobody shows their appreciation or the joy and wonderment of an outdoor experience like a young angler can. “There is an amazing world under that seemingly lifeless surface out there in the winter. There’s activity happening that’s exciting and vibrant, and it’s neat to be a part of it, to learn about the resource and how to appreciate and respect it. That’s what makes the youth part of it so much fun.”
Today’s technology has allowed anglers to probe even deeper and learn even more about the underwater world. “To see what’s happening in the sport of fishing with the introduction of underwater cameras is really fascinating,” Leer continues. “Part of ice fishing for young people is the whole exploration aspect of it all. “They can look down that hole and see the fish and see their bait. They want to learn. They’ll ask about the vegetation they see. They’ll wonder about seeing crayfish that they always thought disappeared in the winter. It opens their eyes to a whole new world.”
For more information about On Ice Tour or the On Ice Olympics, visit http://www.onicetour.com or call the $150,000.00 Brainerd Jaycees Ice Fishing
Extravaganza at: 800-950-9461