NCW Ice Fishing Festival is Saturday, Feb. 18

MOLSON – The 2012 North Central Washington Ice Fishing Festival will be the Saturday of Presidents’ Day Weekend, Feb. 18 at Molson.

The annual fishing contest, sponsored by the Oroville Chamber of Commerce, will actually be held on two lakes this year, both Sidley and Molson lakes. There are new rules though and contestants will only be allowed to catch two fish total this year.

As usual the event is looking for sponsors for cash and prizes for the anglers. Kinross Gold has already promised $500 and there are other local area businesses who will be sponsoring again this year. First prize this year will be $500, with many more prizes to be awarded. North Cascades Broadcasting has also taken a major sponsorship this year.

Registration for the event, which is permitted by the Washington State Fish and Wildlife Department, starts at 7 a.m. at the Grange Hall or at 8 a.m. at the tent office on Sidley Lake. The price to fish is $20 for adults and $10 for youth.

In addition to the fishing, there will be food available at the lake, as well as at the Molson Grange Hall. The Molson Grange will have a pancake breakfast in the hall from 7 a.m. To 10 a.m. for $7 and the Sitzmark Ski Area Volunteers will be hosting the Award Dinner as a fundraiser for the ski hill. A dog sled demonstration by Rev. Gary Forgey is also planned for noon behind the Molson School House Museum.

All the profit from the NCW Ice Fishing Festival is earmarked by the Chamber of Commerce to help the Okanogan Borderlands Historical Society fund the Visitor Information Center at the Depot Museum in Oroville.

David Graybill, the author of the column The Fishin’ Magician, will be helping out this year, according to festival organizer Robin Stice. He plans to also video the event for a possible segment on television later in the year, according to Stice.

Anyone interested in setting up an information booth about their business or an arts and crafts booth should contact Stice at (509) 485-4002. Look for more information on the festival in the local newspaper and on radio.