Walleye Weekend Recap
Walleye Weekend 2017 brought music, sports, family and fun to everyone who attended the non-profit festival. The weather, tournaments and all of the talented bands including Winger, Aaron Shust, Evick, Mantz Brothers and Boogie and the YoYoz to name a few, made Walleye Weekend such a hugely attended event.
According to past President Ray Lapierre, “There has always been a question about attendance in Walleye Weekend. So we decided to see for ourselves and commission our nonprofit partners to count people entering and leaving the grounds at the entry gates and now we have a much more accurate account of our attendees. After a record Friday attendance of 20,500 (+70%) and another slight record Saturday of 34,000 (+4%); Sunday attendance was 13,000. That means the estimated three day attendance ends up the same as last year at 70,000.”
Sponsored by Mercury Marine, Bud Light, Pepsi and Bergstrom Imports Supercenter Hwy 41 Exit 116, Walleye Weekend was able to create a memorable experience for everyone. New this year to Walleye Weekend were the Mercury Island vendors, who sold various Mercury equipment and apparel, the carnival, and the Bergstrom Subaru Bean Bag Toss Tournament which brought fans by the plenty. Collectively, the festivities assisted with Friday being a ground breaker in attendance. According to Karyn Merkel, current President of Fond du Lac Festivals Inc. when asked about this year’s festival she stated,” I’m delighted about the attendance over the weekend and Fond du Lac Festivals could not be happier. Taking a step back and viewing all the festival goers made all the previous work by our staff worthwhile. I look forward to Walleye Weekend 2018”.
There were many awards given out this weekend. Shawn Kahut and Brett Walser came in first at the Mercury National Walleye Tournament with a total weight of 31.42lbs. Dan Corbeil is the winner of the trip to Cancun 3 nights from Chicago to Riu Palace Peninsula compliments of Apple Vacations, RIU and Fox Travel. The Bergstrom Volkswagen 3v3 tournament winners were: Elem 3-5 Boys: Spartan Bombers; J.H Boys: Salem Shooters; 6 Ft. & Under: Swole Team 6; B: Sheboygan Seagulls; B+: Polesheds. The Walleyeball winners included First Place-Sons of Pitchesand second place-Caught Looking. In the Strongman competition the first place Women’s Division winner was Nikki Goldapske. The Lightweight Men’s Division was Jordan Haelrisch-1st place; Benjamin Batura-2nd place; and Tyler Thyssen at 3rd place. The Heavyweight Division winners included: Rob Schwartz-1st place; Gage Zahradnik-2nd place; Jason Buechel -3rd place; and Josh Moore-4th place. Wining the Boss of the Moss were: Adult winners 1st Scott Lobajeski; 2nd Tyler Gross; and 3rd Matt Schultz. Children winners included 1st place Matthew Grater; 2nd place Savannah Boedigheimer; and 3rd place Ben Stucky. Team Fond du Luck took the first place at the Bergstrom Bean Bag Toss Tournament presented by Life Enforcement. The Reporter Run/Walk results included: 5 mile run 1st place – Josiah Swanson; 3 mile walk 1st place – Dan Gregorich; 2 mile run 1st place – Nick Feyen; 1 Mile Run 1st place – Brock Gerritson; 1/3 Mile Run 1st place – Everitt Diener; and 1/3 Mile Run with Parents 1st Place – Calvin Fleishmann. More run/walk results are at: racetecresults.com
Walleye Weekend 2017 was definitely one for the books. With Sunday came ease for everyone with being familiarized with the park, events, fishing tournament, and other attractions. Next year’s attendees should expect to have the same experience this year, if not better as it will be the 40th celebration of the Mercury Marine National Walleye Tournament and the festival. Mark your calendars for June 8-10, 2018.