Warm start to winter delays Brainerd Jaycees ice fishing event

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A popular ice fishing contest in Brainerd has been postponed until Feb. 6.

The warm weather this winter has made the thickness of the ice on Gull Lake inconsistent, so officials with the Brainerd Jaycees $150,000 Ice Fishing Extravaganza and the Crow Wing County Sheriff's Office have decided to postpone the Jan. 23 event, a news release says.

"With the latest cold snap, we were optimistic the ice would be ready for us, but Mother Nature had another plan," Angie Nelson, of Brainerd Jaycees, said in the release. "However, it's critical that we make sure the contest site is safe. This announcement will hopefully allow our participants enough time to adjust their plans to join us in three weeks."

The annual ice fishing event, which is called the world's largest charitable ice fishing tournament, has only been canceled or postponed two other times since it began in 1991.

This year, contestants could win over $200,000 in prizes if they catch one of 150 fish.

The tournament has donated over $3 million to Brainerd-area charities.

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