The 2009 Wisconsin Carp Championships will be held on May 30 & 31, at the most exciting carp fishing venue in the US; "Carptown, USA"! Also known as the City of Two Rivers, WI, this sleepy Lake Michigan shoreline community has been known as "Carptown" for more years than anyone there cares to remember; but now they are dusting off the name and wearing it with pride, as the rising sport of catch & release Carp Fishing comes to their town.
Two Rivers really does sit on... two rivers; with the West Twin and the East Twin rivers running through the center of town. The rivers provide easy marina access into the vastness of Lake Michigan, allowing a thriving charter industry to store their Salmon, Lake Trout and Brown Trout record-catching boats snugly away from the storms that occasionally blow across this inland sea.
But there's one fish that runs up these rivers every April, May and June that the charter skippers don't fish for, but see every year... totally wild, monster-sized Carp. That's the big draw for the 2009 WI Carp Championships; the chance to tangle with a WI-record sized fish (current record is 57lb 2oz), that will net a $100,000 prize (approx. 60,000 GBP). The Event Organizer, Lee Young, is quietly confident of both the quantity and quality of the Carp that the 100 anglers will be fishing for. Young, a veteran competition angler from the UK, has made WI his home and has seen and fished for big Carp all across the State; he rates Two Rivers as the true "Carptown" in the US. "It's carp soup here in late spring", Young explained; "twenty 20 pounders is not unusual in a day, and there are a lot of 30+ pound fish in the mix; I'd consider Two Rivers as the best choice for someone wanting to catch a 40 or 50 pound fish in May".
Young has organized the WI Carp Championships for the last three years, and has seen it grow from a "curiosity event" to an established crowd-puller and media circus. "We held the first WI Carp Championship in '07, and I think that was a great hit with spectators", Young recalled, "We held this in a small park on the shore of Lake Winnebago, which allowed the spectators to get within a few feet of the anglers and really see what was going on. I don't think any of the spectators had ever seen so many large fish being caught before; they were just amazed that 20+ pounders were lining up all day long to hit the anglers baits. They also get an appreciation of how hard these fish fight (visiting UK anglers say that these wild carp fight better than anything they've ever caught before), the specialist gear that the anglers use, and the care that these guys take over their fish; this was the first fishing tournament were the spectators actually got to see real fishing, up close and personal. After that, the '08 was only going to be an even bigger success; we had anglers fan clubs formed from the previous year, sitting behind their favorites for both days, and cheering on every fish caught. We even had a cheerleader team stop their practice, line up behind one lucky angler, and proceed to do their "Carp Dance" after every fish he caught; the TV crew just loved it!"
Young is aiming for more of the same formula this year, but on a bigger venue that allows more anglers, more spectators, and hopefully some even bigger fish. "The City (Two Rivers) and some local businesses have kindly offered their bank-space, and we'll be able to allow the spectators to be right next to the action again, but this time we have space for at least 100 anglers, so there will be plenty of hard-fighting carp action for everyone to see."
With entry fees of just $300 (170 GBP) and plenty of other prizes to fish for ($8,000 cash plus other prizes for top total weight of carp caught over the two days, plus a host of other cash and tackle prizes), Young is hoping for both US and International anglers competing again in 2009. "We've had a powerful Polish contingent attend over the last 2 years, and we're looking for more European anglers to give WI carp fishing a try. I'm standing by with a travel company to set up a variety of angling breaks and holidays for British and European anglers; they will think they've died and gone to carping heaven!" With the beautiful Wisconsin countryside, great weather (averages in May are 25 degrees C, with less than 5 days of rain), friendly people, and really cheap accommodation and food, together with a drive time of only 3 hours from Chicago airport, Wisconsin is truly a Carp Anglers Paradise.
For more details, please contact Lee Young at 001-920-246-3434. 2009 WI Carp Championship Entry Form and Rules available at: http://acsdatacenter.com/index.php?showtopic=1169