Looking for a Mid-Winter Destination? Chase the Pout™ is the Grand-Daddy: International Eelpout Festival Walker, MN February 17-20, 2011

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-Pucker up to smooch a slimy, stinky fish face for luck. -Dress up (or down) to jump into a freezing Minnesota lake in February -Sip an ice cold drink on a 30,000 pound ice cold bar (literally) -Emerge yourself in a culture simply too unique to explain to those who “haven’t been”. -Watch a Minnesota town swell to 10x its size in celebration of a nasty-looking fish.

International Eelpout Festival

"It amazes me that a town of 1500 people can swell to about 10 times its size for a slimy nasty fish"

The Eelpout Festival, a long tradition in angling for one of the ugliest bottom-dwelling fish as well as one of "Up North" revelry, draws thousands of people every winter for what can only be described as good, clean (yet sometimes irreverent and darn cold) fun.

Entering its 32nd year, the Annual International Eelpout Festival attracts roughly 10,000 participants and visitors to Walker, Minn. (pop. 1,500) for three days every February. The Festival is a perfect backdrop to the annual Chase the Pout Games, hosted by Chase on the Lake, northern Minnesota’s premier historic resort property. The annual Chase the Pout activities provide additional revelry and events in collaboration with the time-honored Festival. The historic lakeside hotel often referred to as “The Chase” is a central meeting place for scheduled events and activities which, along with eelpout ice angling, include a 30,000 pound “UV Ice Bar,” live music, the Ranger (boat) Raffle, the infamously (and insanely) colorful Walker Polar Pout Plunge and so much more.

“If past attendance is any indication of what to expect this year, we’ll see more than 10,000 folks up here,” comments Jamie Tatge, manager of The Chase. “It amazes me that a town of 1500 people can swell to about 10 times its size for a slimy nasty fish. Yet the old legend continues to grow … If you kiss the pout, good luck is sure to follow.”

WHEN:    February 17-20, 2010

WHERE:    Chase on the Lake
                        502 Cleveland Blvd.
                        Walker, MN

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INFO:        http://www.eelpoutfestival.com and http://www.chasethepout.com

About Chase the Pout™
Chase the Pout provides additional activities and events in collaboration with the Annual International Eelpout Festival. For more than 30 years, Walker, Minn. has hosted the Eelpout Festival drawing more than 10 times its population to the tiny northern town for a three-day winter pout weekend. The historic property of Chase on the Lake is a central meeting place for scheduled events and activities. The Ranger Raffle ($20K) and the Polar Pout Plunge ($40K) efforts raise approximately $60K for the Minnesota Food Shelf Network and the Walker Community Center.

About Chase on the Lake
Voted as a “Top 5 New Minnesota Hotel” and premier Minnesota resort, Chase on the Lake is a historic resort located on the beautiful shores of Leech Lake in Walker, Minn. Chase’s facilities are designed to serve both personal and professional needs. Amenities include classic hotel lodging accommodations or two and three bedroom lakeside condos; lakeside dining at The 502 Restaurant; Copper Door, a full-service Aveda spa; Chaser’s Alley, a two-lane bowling alley; great outdoor activities including fishing, boating and beach activities, snowmobiling, ice fishing and more. For more information on Chase’s visit http://www.chaseonthelake.com.

About the International Eelpout Festival
Started in 1979 as the brainchild of local Ken Bresley, and now run by owner Jim Gertchy, the festival has grown from 700 visitors (mostly locals) to nearly 10,000. For three days, anglers try their hand at catching one of the ugliest fish found in freshwater with top prizes awarded in several categories. For a full listing of rules and regulations, visit the official festival site link which can be found at http://www.eelpoutfestival.com and http://www.chasethepout.com.

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Kelly Plummer
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