TUPPER LAKE - Fishermen from all over the country will travel to Tupper Lake next weekend to participate in the Northern Challenge Ice Fishing Derby on Lake Simond.
The annual ice fishing event will take place Saturday, Feb. 5, from 7 a.m. until 3 p.m., and is co-sponsored by the Tupper Lake Rod and Gun Club and the Adirondack Regional Federal Credit Union.
Dave McMahon of the Rod and Gun Club said the prizes associated with the event continue to get bigger.
"The payout for everything last year was just a little better than $35,000," McMahon said. "This year, we are giving away two four-wheelers, and $800 in prizes every hour for fish that are caught."
Hourly prizes will include a $500 award for the largest fish caught in an hour, $200 for second place and $100 for third place.
"This is a day-long catch-and-release tournament," McMahon said. "The fishing will go until 3 p.m. and the awards will be handed out at 4 p.m."
McMahon said entrants are encouraged to preregister Friday, Feb. 4 from noon until 10 p.m. at the Tupper Lake Rod and Gun Club on Lake Simond Road. Entrants can also register starting at 3 a.m. the morning of the event through the end of the day.
"We will take around 1,200 entries for the event," McMahon said. "We get people as far away as Colorado coming to the event. I have one person registered from there ... and people from Massachusetts, Vermont and New Jersey."
McMahon said registration tickets are good for the door prizes and four-wheeler drawing.
"The only thing that you would have to pay for other than the entry fee is the 50/50 raffles that are done by the Tupper Lake Dive Team, the Tupper Lake Volunteer Fire Department, the Rod and Gun Club, the Tupper Lake Archers and the Adirondack Leathernecks," McMahon said.
For more information on the annual Northern Challenge Ice Fishing Derby, contact McMahon at 359-9715.