Walleye Weekend Announces Co-Chairs

Fond du Lac Festivals, Inc. (FFI) is proud to announce the Co-chairs of the 2021 Walleye Weekend Festival set for June 11th – 13th at Lakeside Park in Fond du Lac.

This year’s Co-chairs are Kelly Norton, Senior Director of Enterprise Culture & Communications at Grande Cheese, and Dave Hopper, Vice President of Hopper’s Silk Screening and All-Star Trophy. As Co-chairs, Dave and Kelly will serve as event ambassadors to the community, as well as volunteer where possible. “Kelly is perfect for this role as she brings a lot of positive energy to everything she’s involved with for this community,” explained Terry Davis, FFI Board President. “Dave was a perfect choice as well as he and his father, Mark have a long history of being involved with Walleye Weekend, and we look forward to sharing that legacy with the Hopper family for generations to come.”

Kelly lives in Fond du Lac with her husband, Tyler, and three children, Hazen, Sophie, and Reese. Originally from Brownsville, Wisconsin, she regularly volunteers and attends Walleye Weekend with her family and friends. “My favorite element of the festival is the sheer variety of options – everything from watching the Pier Pups, to the athletic tournament play, to an amazing family zone, to fishing weigh-in, to music… and of course, the food. There really is something for everyone!” Kelly exclaimed. Norton is also an all-around advocate of both celebrating and growing the Fond du Lac Community. She is a proud member of the Fond du Lac Area Women’s Fund, the First Tee of Southeast Wisconsin, Thelma Sadoff Center for the Arts Board of Directors, Fond du Lac Morning Rotary, and an alumnus of Leadership Fond du Lac. You may find Norton in the Fond du Lac Morning Rotary beer tent, either serving or being served, depending on which band is on the big stage.

Like Norton, Dave Hopper has fond memories of Walleye Weekend. “My favorite memory was when Walleye Weekend hosted the inflatable boat race on the lake. We raced inflatable Quicksilver boats with a Mercury 9.9 hp engine, and we had to complete 8 laps. I was so close to winning but was still excited to finish in 2nd place.” Hopper was born and raised, and still resides in Fond du Lac with his wife Amy, son, Adam, and daughter, Taylor. Dave is also excited to follow in his father’s (Mark Hopper) footsteps, as Walleye Weekend Co-Chair in ’08 and ’09. You will find both Dave and his whole family in the Merchandise Tent at Walleye Weekend, all weekend long.

There are many other ways for other individuals, families, businesses, and organizations to get involved in this fun-filled, family festival. Check out WalleyeWeekend.com for more information and the most up-to-date schedule.

Walleye Weekend is a major fundraiser for numerous non-profit organizations in the community and has raised over $200,000 per year over the past decade. Fond du Lac Festivals made the decision to cancel last year’s event due to COVID restrictions. Organizers are making every effort for people to feel comfortable at this year’s festival so activities will be spread out and masks will be encouraged when physical distancing is not possible.