March 2014

From the President's Boat

Thanks to everyone that attended, donated, worked the North Metro Annual Banquet.  Although the attendance was lower than last year for a variety of reasons, there was more fun, more and better prizes.  The North Metro Sportsman’s Guide Clothing prize rack was loaded with over 50 items to choose from including hunting, camo, fishing, winter gear, Carhartt, Under Armor, Ice Armor, GuideGear, Dickie, 10X, Russell Outdoors, Infinity, Walls and more clothing in various kids, women’s and men’s sizes.  There were nine guide trips, a Yeti cooler, St. Croix rods, Muskie carvings, a $550 framed signed Musky print, MN Wild, Vikings & Packers jerseys, Frabill nets, Bump Boards, 125 lures and more raffled off or given away.  Please remember thank and support all of the guides, vendors and friends of the North Metro Chapter as without them our Banquet would not have been a success.
I welcome past Board Member Steve “Sorgey” Sorgenfrie and new Board Members Jason Wegwerth, Brad Patterson and Nick Poppler.  I commend them for stepping up.  The more Board members we have the easier it is for everyone and most importantly the more we can do for the fishery and the Chapter.  They are already putting their mark on 2014 League Night Contest with a number of fun improvements.
It is not too late to send in your photos (in large mega pixel format) for the MN Muskie Expo.  Submit photos to Dan Mruz at
We need more Board Members, a Members Only Contest & Photo Contest Chair, MN Minnesota Expo Co-Chair and NMMI Members Challunge Tournament Co-Chairs to help with a variety of small tasks and projects throughout the year.  Contact any of the North Metro Board Members if you can assist us!

Dan Mruz
North Metro President
< º)))))))))))))><(

George's Minnesota Muskie Expo 
April 4, 5 & 6, 2014

The Minnesota Musky Expo is less than a month away. For those that have already volunteered their time, thank you! The Chapter’s goals for the two booths at this year’s Expo are twofold:
     1.) Recruit New Membership
     2.) Showcase the positives of the North Metro Chapter
     3.) Demonstrate proper catch & release tools and procedures
     4.) We plan to represent the 2013 Members Only Contest Winners their mounts in front of the crowds to demonstrate just one of the many benefits of being a North Member Chapter member.

We would like volunteers to engage folks that come by the booth and talk to them about the Chapter and Muskies Inc. This Expo is in our backyard, so it is an excellent opportunity to meet prospective members and demonstrate what being part of the North Metro Chapter is all about!

The Catch & Release Booth is there to educate and help protect the Minnesota Muskie fishery that we have worked so hard to build and reduce mortality from improper handling and poor equipment.

We still need Volunteers to staff the booths. If you give us some time, we’d really appreciated it. If you are a volunteer, your admission to the Expo is free. So come on in, get some custom cowgirls going and then while you wait for your baits sit in the booth and help the Chapter out!

If you wish to volunteer, please contact Brad Patterson at 763-208-7728 or at
Thanks, and we hope to see you all there!

Ganglehoff Center
Concordia University

Your organization gave my husband, Daniel Bever, much entertainment and camaraderie. I am grateful. Daniel died December 28, 2013. Many Muskie Inc. members have been most kind in extending their sympathy.
Thank you, 
Shirley Bever

Print Your Member ID Cards

A new system has been implemented by Muskies Inc. that allows members to print their own Muskies Inc. ID cards at any time from the website. This new process will save dollars in monthly expenditures for the imprinting and managing of ID cards over the previous method.

To utilize this new process, log in to the Muskies Inc. website using the Member Login button on the left of the home page. Once you have logged in, click on the profile update button. In the upper right corner of the profile, there is a link that you can click and print your card. For family members, the family head can print the IDs for the entire family.

Members who do not have access to computers or are unable to print their own ID cards should contact the MI Secretary to have them produced and mailed to them.

The Hugh C. Becker Foundation and North Metro Chapter Team Up to assist the DNR

The North Metro Chapter was successful in its 2014 grant requests to benefit the TC Metro Muskie fishery and the DNR Offices.  The Hugh C. Becker Foundation has just announced that it has awarded the North Metro Chapter $6,500 for two DNR projects: 
1) $5,800 for St. Croix River Study to radio tag muskies to monitor movements and determine key habitat as part of a broader study monitoring a number of other species in the river.  The North Metro will match an additional $1,500 towards the total additional project cost of $11,500; and
2) $700 for the ongoing TC Metro Area tagging study for PIT Tags and Readers with the North Metro providing an additional $650 match. 
The DNR will receive in total $8,650 of equipment purchased with these combined funds. 
In just the last four years the Hugh C. Becker Foundation has generously awarded the North Metro Chapter $31,450 of grants in recognition of our project requests.  We have matched that with Chapter funds totaling $8,000.  Our thanks and recognition goes out to the Hugh C. Becker Foundation and its hard working representatives such as George Selcke for its continued generous support of the project requests made by the North Chapter to support the Twin Cities Muskie Fishery and the DNR. 
Thank You Hugh your legacy lives on!

Our Chapter’s purpose is:

To promote a high quality muskellunge sport fishery;

To support selected conservation practices based on scientific merit and carried out by authorized federal and state agencies;

To promote muskellunge research;

To introduce the species into suitable waters;

To support the abatement of water pollution;

To disseminate muskellunge information;

To promote good fellowship and sportsmanship among men, women and children;

To encourage and support youth involvement in muskellunge fishing for our future.

Join the North Metro Board or as an Event Chairperson or as a Volunteer. The Board meets for only two hours once a month on the first Tuesday, September through June. You can help influence the direction of the Chapter and help the Metro Muskie Fishery.
We are trying to make our Chapter an overwhelming success but need your help with a variety of small tasks and projects.  Contact me or any of the North Metro Board Members to assist us!

April 15 Meeting

Erik Jacobson lives in Garrison, MN. With Mille Lacs Lake in his back yard, he spends most of his time fishing there, but he is no stranger to many other MN lakes. He also has extensive experience north of the border on Lake of the Woods. He's written for and has been featured in the top fishing and muskie magazines in the industry. "Just Big Muskies" DVD's that have over fifty 50"+ muskies in the series is produced by Erik and Brian Hanson. "Trolling for giants from summer to fall" will be the focus of the seminar, so bring your questions and Erik will do his best to answer them.


President................................... Dan Mruz
Vice President.......... Steve Wernesbach
Regional VP............................. Mike Riha
Secretary.................. Tony VanDanacker
Treasurer........................... Jim Shannon


Dick Hamann................. 763-428-7789
Robb Meyers.................. 612-791-6331
Dan Mruz......................... 763-535-4206
Brad Patterson................763-208-7728
Nick Poppler....................651-592-8575
Mike Riha......................... 763-607-2800
Jim Shannon.................. 763-434-9729

Steve Sorgenfrei..............651-789-4360
Tony VanDanacker........ 763-370-5424

Jason Wegwerth.............763-478-1748
Steve Wernersbach........763-242-2625


Membership Chairman          
Robb Meyers ................ 612-791-6331

Members Only Fishing Contest
Dan Mruz ...................... 763-535-4206

Newsletter Editor       
Robb Meyers................ 612-791-6331

Web Administrator        

Next Meeting March 18

Luke Ronnestrand, muskie guide and tournament angler from Elk River, Minnesota, will be the guest speaker at our monthly membership meeting on Tuesday, March 18th. Ronnestrand is co-owner of Holcombe Tackle Company, Inc., the company that makes Premium Musky Buster lures. Luke is our scheduled seminar speaker our March meeting.

Red Wing Lodge
August 9-16, 2014
On Sabaskong Bay
Lake of the Woods

Not Our First Rodeo

It’s easy to include yourself in a big-time Canadian fishing trip, join an outing that has successfully taken place for years at a base camp that just works great for muskie hunters. For either that first Canadian trip or for an extra trip for the Canadian veteran, Red Wing Lodge on Sabaskong Bay is an amazing destination. This year’s dates for the annual Muskies Inc. outing are August 9-16, 2014. 
Red Wing Lodge has been picked as the headquarters of Chapter Challenge eight times by winning chapters in: 1983, 1986, 1993, 1997, 2003, 2004, 2011, and 2012! And will again be Chapter Challenge headquarters in 2014 for the ninth time!! 

When hunting muskies on Canadian Shield water, surprises at base camp can cut down on valuable fishing time. Red Wing Lodge offers a resort base that has been family owned and operated for more than 45 years and is clean and comfortable where everything works. The Bartlett family has hosted Muskies Inc. outings for years with personal and friendly service, so they understand what muskie people need and like. The annual August outing is open to Muskies Inc. chapter members and their guests. Check out the muskie information, including the Red Wing Lodge Hall of Fame, as well as the first live cam in Morson, at

Cost per person in housekeeping cabins will remain at $325 (US Funds) for 2014, which breaks down to just $46.43 per day for big-time Canadian muskie fishing.
Included in the full value of the 2014 Muskie Inc. trip:   
* Free Dockage  ($72 value), Free Launch (both ways, $25 value)
* Free Dinner one night, courtesy of the Bartlett’s
* One Free Trip, given away in drawing, courtesy of the Bartlett’s
* Free Wireless Internet Service throughout the Resort
* Free Daily Bag of Ice; door prizes
Reservations require a $50 non-refundable deposit, made out to Red Wing Lodge. Deposits officially confirm reservation holds.  First come, first served. 
Early deposits are appreciated by the Bartletts, these funds are used to purchase materials for cabin improvements, most of which can only be made over the winter. 
For e.g., the Bartletts recently completed installing A/C units in all cabins.
To make reservations, or any questions or suggestions for improving the trip, contact: 

John van Ingen
(651) 699-5172
2108 Palace Ave
St. Paul, MN 55105
Pat Miller
651) 429-1629
1645 Ridgewood Ave
White Bear Lake, MN 55110

For answers to detailed questions regarding the Lodge, e.g., about the cabins, you are invited to call Mike and Anne Bartlett toll free at 1-888-488-5601.

Website Administrator Needed

North Metro Muskies needs a volunteer responsible for maintaining our website. The duties of the webmaster include updating the website monthly, ensuring that the web servers, hardware and software are operating correctly, designing the website, generating and revising web pages and replying to user comments.

It currently runs on Joomla! 1.5.10 

Please contact

Working to Preserve, Promote and Advance Muskie and Pike Education and Research in Minnesota

Last year I served on a DNR led committee titled the Commissioner's Council on Recruitment and Retention. The council was the first step in the DNR's process to address the issue of hunting and fishing participation. Nationwide, participation in hunting and fishing is on the decline in comparison to population growth, and the age group that makes up the largest portion of the hunting and angling community is nearing the point where they'll be leaving the ranks in the coming years. Declining participation spells bad news for the future of our hunting and angling traditions, but it also means declining revenue for state and national fish and game agencies, including our own DNR. That revenue is absolutely vital to keeping fish and wildlife populations thriving, and maintaining the habitats they need to survive. Many of our Muskies Inc. chapters hold youth events to help introduce youngsters to fishing. A lot of other sporting/conservation organizations hold similar events. These are great events and a whole lot of fun. However, research is showing that these types of events don't actually result in many new long-term participants in hunting and fishing.

At the upcoming MMPA meeting on March 15, Roland Sigurdson from the MN DNR will be discussing this growing problem and the possible steps we need to take to solve it. We want to invite one or two additional members from each chapter to attend this discussion. If each chapter could send their Youth Director (or whomever handles the youth events for their chapter) to the meeting it would go a long way towards getting this important message out there. Please discuss this among your chapters and send someone on March 15 to The Old Waterfall Inn, 18512 Minnesota 371, Brainerd MN, 56401. The meetings run from 10am to 2pm. The "Recruitment and Retention" presentation will be roughly from 10:30 to 11:30am. Feel free to stay for the whole meeting, but if you've got other obligations you only need to stay for the hour long presentation.

Thanks, Aaron Meyer Co-Chair MMPA

Mille Lacs Lake muskie spawning beds protected forever

Rare, prized Mille Lacs Lake muskellunge spawning beds will remain untouched forever on a shallow, undeveloped bay, thanks to landowner Sue Lyback, members of the Minnesota Land Trust and resources from the Outdoor Heritage Fund. The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Minnesota Muskie and Pike Alliance, the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe and the Initiative Foundation all wrote letters of support for the project.

Without the efforts of this unique partnership, Sue Lyback would have needed to sell her land for lakeshore development. In fact, the site was already approved for a residential subdivision into numerous lots, which would likely have destroyed the sensitive shoreline and severely impacted the extraordinary muskie spawning beds and other associated wildlife habitat. Instead of pursuing development, however, Lyback contacted the Minnesota Land Trust with the hope that her family memories and the wildlife habitat she’s grown up with over the years would be left in its natural state forever.

Preservation of this large tract of land on one of Minnesota’s most celebrated lakes effectively increases the public investments made in the nearby Father Hennepin State Park and an Aquatic Management Area to the south. It’s also located within an important natural resource corridor identified by the Habitat Conservation Partnership, a collaboration of public and private conservation entities funded in part by the Minnesota Legislature.

The project was completed through the Department of Natural Resource’s Conservation Partners Legacy (CPL) grant program, which funds conservation projects that restore, enhance, or protect forests, wetlands, prairies, and habitat for fish, game, and wildlife in Minnesota.
North Metro Muskie League 2014

New this year – We will have an East Metro Lake option and a West Metro Lake option. You can fish one or the other and get points- no fishing 2 lakes and getting extra points. This is an ON YOUR HONOR based league. Participants must report back within 48 hours after fishing an event.

 3 points for showing up on a league date
                2 points for Partner- May only count a Partner (1) time *.
                2 bonus points for fishing with a new 2014 MI Member- on top of Partner Points *.
2 bonus points for fishing with a Junior partner - on top of Partner Points *.
                2 point bonus for fishing with Partner from other chapters- during the challenges *.
                4 points for a 30” muskie 1 point for each inch over 30” scored to the nearest half inch.
 40.5” = 14.5 points.

Bonus points may only be counted one (1) time  by a NMMI Member for each a) new 2014 MI Member, b) Junior MI Member, c) Other Chapter Member.

Fishing Times
June / July                                 5:00 PM to 9:30 PM
August                                       5:00 PM to 9:00 PM

 â€“ St Croix River--- Inland season closed yet
 â€“                        Bald Eagle –East Option                               Independence - West Option
19th â€“ Thursday ***Rush Lake- East Option                          Waconia – West option
 â€“                          Forest- East Option                                         Minnetonka- West option
*** The North Metro has a Chapter picnic and tackle swap on Tuesday June 17th - All are welcome to attend.
 â€“                            White Bear – Chapter Mini Challunge with TC – Losers buy Pizza Afterwards!
 â€“                          Open- water may be cool this year
 â€“                          White Bear- East option                                                               Waconia- West option
 â€“                        Forest – East option                                                        Minnetonka- West option
 â€“                          Rush- East option                                                            Sugar- West option
 â€“                          Bald Eagle-East option                                                  White Bear – West option

Chapter Final League Night Celebration- Pizza Afterwards near White Bear Lake- Chapter buys!

League Night Prizes:
1st place “Engraved Magnum Phantom” Lure
 2nd- 3rd “Engraved Regular Phantom” Lure
4-10th “North Metro Muskie League” t-shirts
The Awards will be held during the December 16th, 2014 Holiday Lure Exchange meeting versus the annual banquet in order to save time.
New Participation Drawing !
For each League Night a North Metro Member participates in, they will get one raffle ticket placed in the end of season drawing held at the December 16th Members meeting for a variety of prizes.  If you fished 5 nights, you get 5 chances… i.e. 15 member’s fished 6 nights on average + 10 members fish 3 nights you would have 120 total tickets in the drawing.

Grand Prize “St Croix Tournament Legend 8 ½ft rod”
2nd - 10th “Various Lures”

Reporting will by an e-mail to a league e-mail and updates will be done on the North Metro Forum as well as the Muskiefirst’s organizations forum.

Comments can be e-mailed to or call my cell phone 651-792-5502.

2013 Members Only Contest Final Results

If you caught your first Muskie ever this year please let Dan Mruz know and if possible provide details and photo.”

Muskies Caught  
  Average Size
Mark Swanson 58   658.00   37.34
Chris Dolan 31   514.25   42.59
Dave Selle 24   427.00   43.79
Eric A Nelson 17   231.00   39.59
John Maslowski 14   211.75   41.13
Jason Hamernick 5   139.50   53.90
Erik Jacobson 7   123.00   43.57
Brian Klobe 5   52.00   36.40
Mens Masters Total    161   2,356.50    
John Santer 20   352.40   43.62
Nick Eddy 29   347.00   37.97
Brad Patterson 17   313.50   44.44
Patrick Thiry 20   273.25   39.66
Troy Bilbrey 17   263.50   41.50
Walter Thielbar 17   239.75   40.10
Jason Wegwerth 14   213.00   41.21
Mark Kuether 10   189.50   44.95
Mark Weiss 9   162.50   44.06
Stephen Wernersbach 11   152.50   39.86
Nick Poppler 9   140.50   41.61
John Genosky 10   129.00   38.90
Chase  Evertz 11   123.50   37.23
Steven J Sorgenfrei 8   119.50   40.94
Rich Lehman 10   118.00   37.80
Jason Summers 8   116.50   40.56
Mike Riha 7   101.00   40.43
Bob Wagner 7   92.50   39.21
Chris Cochran 6   92.00   41.33
Patrick Garaghty 7   86.00   38.29
Mike Walsh 4   84.00   47.00
Bob Anderson 7   84.00   38.00
Grant Lindberg 7   76.00   36.86
Scott Kersting 5   74.25   40.85
Larry Klein 5   72.50   40.50
Chris Swanson 3   70.50   49.50
Dave Ledman 5   67.00   39.40
Jim Dau 4   66.90   42.73
Joseph DeGreeff 5   59.00   37.80
Bruce Rauma 4   58.00   40.50
Thomas Kelnhofer Jr. 5   52.75   36.55
Wayne D Farmer 2   52.00   52.00
Jason Dickson 4   48.00   38.00
Pat Miller 4   46.50   37.63
Dan Mruz Sr 2   45.50   48.75
Curtis Willcox 2   29.00   40.50
Jim Lindberg 2   28.50   40.25
David Youngblom 1   26.50   52.50
Robert Venturin 1   25.00   51.00
John F Van Ingen 2   23.00   37.50
Darin Brockel 2   21.50   36.75
Luke Ellis 2   19.00   35.50
Jay Aigner 2   19.00   35.50
Jim Svenningsen 1   17.00   43.00
Justin  Mihm 1   13.25   39.25
Paul R Dickson 1   13.00   39.00
Dan Mruz Jr 1   10.00   36.00
Steven J Banks 1   9.50   35.50
Mens Total    332   4,836.55    
Joey Wyszynski 1   18.50   44.50
Womens Masters Total    1   18.50    
Korey Lindberg 3   35.50   37.83
Hannah Thiry 3   25.00   34.33
Lori Lehman 2   22.50   37.25
Lynn Weiss 1   21.50   47.50
Womens Total    9   104.50    
Max Lehman 4   58.00   40.50
David Jacobson 2   32.00   42.00
Noah Jacobson 1   24.00   50.00
Nolan Garaghty 2   17.50   34.75
Michael Klobe 2   14.00   33.00
Matthew Munchow 1   12.00   38.00
Matthew Klobe 1   7.00   33.00
Markus Klobe 1   6.00   32.00
Junior Boys Total    14   170.50    
Meredith Jacobson 5   61.00   38.20
Ravyn Swanson 4   36.50   35.13
Kalina Garaghty 2   15.50   33.75
Junior Girls Total    11   113.00    
Chapter Total    528   7,599.55    

   Muskies    Caught  
         Average  Size
Eric Nelson 11   150.00   39.6
Nick Eddy 3   30.00   36.0
Patrick Thiry 1   22.00   48.0
John Maslowski 1   20.00   46.0
Walter Thielbar 1   13.00   39.0
Thomas J Kelnhofer Jr. 1   8.00   34.0
Mark Swanson 1   6.00   32.0
Total Tigers 19   249.00   39.1
50" Big Fish Club      
Member    Inches   Date Caught
Jason Hamernick 56.00   10/27/2013
Jason Hamernick 55.50   07/18/2013
Jason Hamernick 54.00   08/21/2013
Mark Weiss 53.00   07/03/2013
Chris Cochran 52.50   07/20/2013
David Youngblom 52.50   09/12/2013
Wayne D Farmer 52.00   11/16/2013
Wayne D Farmer 52.00   11/16/2013
Jason Hamernick 52.00   09/11/2013
Jason Hamernick 52.00   07/18/2013
Erik Jacobson 52.00   07/02/2013
Dave Selle 52.00   07/17/2013
Chris Dolan 51.75   09/12/2013
Jason Wegwerth 51.50   09/07/2013
Bob Anderson 51.00   07/30/2013
Mark Kuether 51.00   10/19/2013
Nick Poppler 51.00   07/12/2013
Chris Swanson 51.00   09/20/2013
Robert Venturin 51.00   06/01/2013
Mike Walsh 51.00   07/07/2013
Chris Dolan 51.00   06/02/2013
Daniel Mruz Sr 50.50   09/22/2013
John Santer 50.50   07/21/2013
Dave Selle 50.50   09/03/2013
Dave Selle 50.50   07/17/2013
Noah Jacobson 50.00   07/25/2013
Patrick Garaghty 50.00   09/18/2013
John Genosky 50.00   09/30/2013
Dave Ledman 50.00   08/26/2013
Rich Lehman 50.00   11/02/2013
Stephen Wernersbach 50.00   07/09/2013
Dave Selle 50.00   07/23/2013

Lunker of the Month for 2013

Month Member Name Length
January Chris Dolan 44.00
April Troy Bilbrey 37.50
May John Santer 48.00
June Robert Venturin 51.00
June Chris Dolan 51.00
July Jason Hamernick 55.50
August Jason Hamernick 54.00
September David Youngblom 52.50
October Jason Hamernick 56.00
November Wayne Farmer 52.00
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Our mailing address is:
North Metro Muskies, Inc.
P.O. Box 41216
Plymouth, MN 55441-0216

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