I joined my first virtual tournament. I live in White Bear Lake, and I have an 8-year-old grandson who is getting fired up about fishing. I have had him catching sunnies and an occasional bass and northern off the dock for years. Now he is casting will and beginning to learn how to find the fish.
White Bear Lake has its summer festival from June 16 until July 4. It begins with a parade and ends with fireworks. They call it Manitou Days. This year there is a virtual fishing tournament. You can fish any of the lakes within White Bear: White Bear Lake, Bald Eagle Lake, Otter Lake, Goose Lake and Birch Lake.
Tate and I decided we would fish the tournament, so I downloaded the FishDonkey app and signed up. When I finished registering, the first thing I had to do was pick a tourney. I was surprised to see just how many tournaments there were.
Some tournaments are free and some have an entry fee with cash prizes. FishDonkey handles all the charging. The Manitou Days event is sponsored by a local vendor so there was no charge to sign up.
The event has two groups; 10 and under and 11 to 15. Each group has four categories:
Largest Any Fish
Stringer of 3 Bass
Stringer of 3 Panfish
Wild Card “Sweet Treat at the Lake”
Wild Card “That’s Not a Fish”
Our first outing was a disaster. We just fished panfish off the dock. I did not know how to run the app so I took photos of the fish on a tape measure and tossed the fish back. Then I went to enter a fish and learned that you have to take the picture from the app. When you do that, you enter the category and size of the fish. Then the entry is listed in the standings.
Our second outing was much better. We rented a 14-foot boat with a 10 HP Merc at Tally’s on White Bear Lake. We fished for two hours and picked up a few fish. This time we entered the fish as we caught them, and we got listed.
If you are thinking of hosting an event, check out FishDonkey. The app supports all kinds of event models and does not require the manpower to manage a traditional event with blast off and weigh in.