Battle On The Bay Begins As Cabela’s Masters Walleye Circuit’s 2016 World Walleye Championship Kicks Off

South Dakota's Mike Dorris and Brian Tordsen blast off onto Green Bay.

South Dakota’s Mike Dorris and Brian Tordsen blast off onto Green Bay.

 

 

Green Bay, Wisc.—Oct. 6, 2016—Forty-eight two-person walleye fishing teams from across the country set off onto the uncharacteristically calm waters of Lake Michigan’s famed Green Bay this morning in search of walleye gold, as day one of the three-day Cabela’s Masters Walleye Circuit’s 2016 World Walleye Championship kicked off out of Metro Park landing.

Presented by Cabela’s, the championship pits the top teams from the circuit’s 2015 schedule, which spanned eight states and included 11 qualifying events. Anglers are fighting for their share of more than $80,000 in winnings, including the first-place payout of $15,000 in cash. Plus, sponsor contingencies including Ranger Cup, Abu Garcia, Lowrance Electronics and Okuma bonuses add thousands more to the total payout.

The field reads like a who’s-who in tournament walleye fishing, and is led by the Cabela’s MWC’s 2015 Team of the Year Ryan Dempsey and Adam Adler. It also includes newly crowned 2016 Cabela’s MWC Team of the Year Steve VandeMark and Jerry Fox, Jr.

Teams are fishing the Fox River and Wisconsin waters of Green Bay, and allowed to bring their best five walleyes to the daily weigh-ins, also held at Green Bay Metro Park, which begin at 4 p.m. At the end of the three days, the team with the heaviest total will be crowned World Walleye Champions.

Reigning 2015 MWC Champions Greg Whitson and Mark Campeau score an early keeper.

Reigning 2015 MWC Champions Greg Whitson and Mark Campeau score an early keeper.

2013 Cabela’s MWC Team of the Year and 2014 MWC World Walleye Champions Derek Navis and Korey Sprengel would love to reclaim the title this time around, but predict challenging conditions will put each one of the teams’ talents to the test.

“Water temperatures have dropped 10 degrees in the last week and the daytime bite is really tough,” says Sprengel, of Beaver Dam, Wisconsin. “Not a lot of fish were being caught in practice, and with multiple weather patterns expected to move through during the tournament, it’s going to be interesting. True champions will be crowned at the end of this one.”

“It’s going to be a grind,” added Navis, of Brandon, Wisconsin. “We’re going to bust our butts and hopefully put a few fish in the box.”

Fishing his 12th MWC Championship, Tommy Skarlis foresees an on-the-water chess match where teams face big decisions on where and how to fish.

“It’s pretty interesting out there,” says Skarlis, of Waukon, Iowa, who is fishing with partner Jeff Lahr. “We’ve had a lot of northeast winds which doesn’t bode well for the deep bite. The fish are everywhere right now, they’ve got lots of food, and the bite hasn’t been right.”

While many teams are expected to focus on Green Bay, Skarlis won’t be surprised to see a few  boats head up the Fox River. “The river is going to be a factor, especially for teams that want to get into the top 10 or 20,” he said. “And if the wind is blowing, river fish could take it all.”

Some teams are predicting three 20-pound bags could take the tournament, but Skarlis has faith in the MWC field’s potential to score big catches. “You have 48 top teams of the greatest walleye anglers in the nation. It’s going to take a big weight to win this one. Jeff and I are thinking you’ll need anywhere from 75 to 90 pounds to pull it off.”

On the tactical front, Skarlis believes a variety of shad- or banana-style crankbaits could be key on the bay. “Any of the baits from Berkley are hot,” he says. “Flicker Shads, Flicker Minnows, even some of the new multi-species lures like the Warpig could be major players.”

In the river, he notes, “A cornucopia of presentations come into play. Jigging, dragging three-way rigs, casting crankbaits or spoons, you can catch walleyes a lot of different ways.”

The public is invited to attend the weigh-ins and cheer on their favorite teams. Adding to the excitement, on-the-water and weigh-in action will be filmed for national television airing on Federation Angler TV, which appears on the Pursuit Channel.

As a bonus for young walleye anglers, the Cabela’s MWC, National Professional Anglers Association and Pure Fishing will present a Youth & Family Fishing Clinic immediately after Friday’s weigh-in. The first 50 youths will receive rod and reel combos courtesy of the NPAA.

Under the umbrella of The Walleye Federation (TWF), the Cabela’s MWC is open to avid walleye anglers from all walks of life. The 2017 schedule includes qualifiers on the Illinois River March 17-18, the Detroit River April 7-8, Big Stone Lake April 28-29, the Bay of Green Bay out of Green Bay May 19-20, Lake Winnebago June 2-3, Devils Lake July 21-22, and the St. Marys River Aug. 25-26.

Cabela’s, the World’s Foremost Outfitter for hunting, fishing and outdoor gear, is concluding its 15th season as title sponsor of the MWC. Official Circuit sponsors include: Berkley Gulp!, Abu Garcia, Lowe Equipment Attachments, Lowrance Electronics, Mercury Marine, Ranger Boats and The Walleye Federation. Associate MWC sponsors include: AirWave Pedestals, G-Juice, MotorGuide and Okuma. For more information, visit masterswalleyecircuit.com, email [email protected], or call (580) 765-9031.

A Night To Remember: Ceremony Commemorates Cabela’s Masters Walleye Circuit’s Induction Into National Fresh Water Fishing Hall Of Fame

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Oct. 5, 2016—Green Bay, Wisc.—In an emotional ceremony that reflected on the past while also looking forward to a bright future, the Cabela’s Masters Walleye Circuit was inducted into the National Fresh Water Fishing Hall of Fame last night at the Green Bay Cabela’s.

Hall of Fame executive director Emmett Brown (at right above) presented the award to MWC president and CEO Robert Cartlidge (at left).

“Since 1984 the Cabela’s MWC has really set the standard for team walleye fishing, but they’re so much more than that,” said Brown, acknowledging the circuit’s conservation and youth efforts. “It’s with great personal pride I officially bring the Cabela’s Masters Walleye Circuit into the Hall of Fame.”

Cartlidge gratefully accepted the honor, but credited the circuit’s anglers, sponsors, staff and other supporters for helping it survive the test of time for 33 years. “Really this award belongs to all of you,” he said.

Cartlidge called a number of speakers to the podium, including senior tournament director Dan Palmer, former executive director Dan Johnson and representatives from longtime circuit sponsors including Nicole Hanley of Cabela’s and Steve Lindahl of Ranger Boats.

“In 1985, a fledgling little group called MWC came to Flippin, Arkansas, looking for a sponsor, and that marriage and friendship has been going on ever since,” said Lindahl. “We appreciate the vast support the MWC and its anglers have given us.”

“We extend our congratulations to the MWC. Their 30-plus years of promoting fishing, conservation and education are obvious reasons why we want to sponsor the circuit,” Hanley said.

Cabela’s also prepared a special video tribute to honor the occasion.

“Cabela’s has been a part of the Masters Walleye Circuit for 15 years. It’s been a great pleasure and we look forward to many, many more,” said Lara Herboldsheimer of Cabela’s brand partnerships.

“Cabela’s is proud to partner with such a great organization,” added Jeremy Wonch, also of the company’s brand partnerships division. “Your efforts toward conservation, youth involvement and growing the sport of fishing have been outstanding.”

To view the event photo gallery, CLICK HERE.

To watch the complete ceremony video click below.


The National Fresh Water Fishing Hall of Fame, located in Hayward, Wis., is the international headquarters for education, recognition and promotion of freshwater sportfishing. Each year it recognizes individuals, groups and organizations for their impact benefiting freshwater angling. Individuals and organizations are honored for outstanding achievements in fishing accomplishments regarding career success and innovation in competition, invention, science, education, conservation, communications, technology or other areas related to fishing.

Under the umbrella of The Walleye Federation (TWF), the Cabela’s MWC is open to avid walleye anglers from all walks of life, with registration for all qualifying events opening in January of 2016.

Cabela’s, the World’s Foremost Outfitter for hunting, fishing and outdoor gear, is in its 15th season as title sponsor of the MWC. Official sponsors include: Berkley Gulp!, Abu Garcia, Lowe Equipment Attachments, Lowrance Electronics, Mercury Marine, Ranger Boats and The Walleye Federation. Associate sponsors include: AirWave Pedestals, G-Juice, MotorGuide and Okuma. For more information, visit masterswalleyecircuit.com, email [email protected], or call (580) 765-9031.

Green Bay Ceremony To Commemorate Cabela’s MWC Fresh Water Fishing Hall of Fame Induction

Green Bay, Wisc.—Oct. 4, 2016—In recognition of more than three decades of promoting the sport of fishing, protecting fisheries resources and providing walleye anglers with professionally run team tournament competition, the Cabela’s Masters Walleye Circuit in 2016 was enshrined into the National Fresh Water Fishing Hall of Fame.

To commemorate the honor, a special induction presentation will be held tonight, Tuesday, Oct. 4, at 7 p.m. at the Cabela’s outdoor superstore located at 499 Lombardi Avenue in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

The event is free and the public is invited to join Cabela’s MWC sponsors, anglers and staff in celebrating this historic accomplishment.

The ceremony is being held in conjunction with the 2016 Cabela’s MWC World Walleye Championship, which runs Oct. 6-8 on Green Bay.

For full details on the Hall of Fame induction, CLICK HERE.

For the Cabela’s Green Bay store website, CLICK HERE.

Cabela’s Masters Walleye Circuit Unveils Action-Packed 2017 Team Tournament Schedule

Lineup Includes Hefty Payouts, Exciting Competition And Great Fishing

Ponca City, Okla.—Oct. 3, 2016—Since 1984 the Cabela’s Masters Walleye Circuit has set the standard for providing serious walleye anglers with affordable yet exciting, high-stakes team-format walleye competition in a professionally run atmosphere. That tradition continues in 2017, thanks to a tournament schedule once again filled with top walleye destinations at peak fishing times.

The circuit’s 2017 lineup features seven qualifiers in six states on a diverse selection of rivers, inland lakes and Great Lakes fisheries.

The 2017 Cabela’s MWC schedule includes:

March 17-18
Illinois River at Spring Valley, IL

April 7-8
Detroit River/Lake Erie at Trenton, MI

April 28-29
Big Stone Lake at Ortonville, MN

May 19-20
Bay of Green Bay at Green Bay, WI

June 2-3
Lake Winnebago at Menasha, WI

July 21-22
Devils Lake at Devils Lake, ND

August 25-26
St. Marys River at Sault Ste. Marie, MI

“The MWC once again focused on fishing premier destinations when the bite is on,” said MWC Senior Tournament Director Dan Palmer. “The 2017 schedule offers world-class walleye fishing, hefty tournament payouts and a great time for our anglers in a two-person team setting that lets you enjoy the thrill of competition with your favorite fishing partner.”

Along with enjoying fast fishing and exciting competition in a professionally run team format that has stood the test of time for more than 30 years, anglers have a shot to win thousands in cash and prizes at each event.

Cabela’s MWC qualifier payouts are based on the number of two-person teams entered in each event, and can top $20,000 cash for first place. Plus, the MWC Big Fish Pot, MWC side pot payouts and bonuses from sponsors including Ranger Boats, Lowrance Electronics, Abu Garcia, Lowe Equipment Attachments and Okuma add thousand more to the total.

Cabela’s MWC qualifiers also serve as “State Championship Events,” adding more excitement to every tournament. All teams fishing the event are eligible for the State Champions title in that state, and any event with more than 10 teams registered from any state where MWC is not holding a qualifier that year will offer a State Champions title for that state as well. Besides bragging rights, state champions earn, at minimum, custom state champions’ prizes and awards, a berth in the Cabela’s NTC, and a spot on the MWC website’s Wall of Fame.

Teams fishing three or more tournaments in 2017 will also battle for coveted berths in the 2018 Cabela’s MWC World Walleye Championship, set for October on Bays de Noc out of Escanaba, MI.

The MWC World Walleye Championship represents the top point-accumulating teams from the previous year’s season, with the payout based on that previous year’s participation as well. Teams fishing at least four qualifiers compete for Team of the Year awards, including thousands in cash and Cabela’s Cash cards, as well as fully paid entries into a full season of exciting walleye action and more.

Under the umbrella of The Walleye Federation (TWF), the Cabela’s MWC is open to avid walleye anglers from all walks of life, regardless of sponsor or club affiliations. Registration for 2017 events will open in January. Visit masterswalleyecircuit.com for updates, official rules and registration information.

Cabela’s, the World’s Foremost Outfitter for hunting, fishing and outdoor gear, is looking forward to its 16th season as title sponsor of the MWC. Official sponsors include: Berkley Gulp!, Abu Garcia, Lowe Equipment Attachments, Lowrance Electronics, Mercury Marine, Ranger Boats and The Walleye Federation. Associate sponsors include: AirWave Pedestals, G-Juice, MotorGuide and Okuma. For more information, email [email protected], or call (580) 765-9031.

Cabela’s Masters Walleye Circuit’s 2016 World Walleye Championship Visits Green Bay Oct. 6-8

2015-MWC-logoPresented By Cabela’s

Ponca City, Okla.—Sept. 28, 2016—The Walleye Belt’s top two-person teams will clash on Lake Michigan’s Green Bay Oct. 6-8 in a big-water battle of epic proportions at the Cabela’s Masters Walleye Circuit’s 2016 World Walleye Championship.

Presented by Cabela’s, the event features the top point-accumulating teams from the 2015 MWC season, which included 11 regular-season qualifiers in eight states on a diverse selection of rivers, inland lakes and Great Lakes fisheries. Each spot in the field is by invitation-only and highly coveted among walleye tournament anglers.

Rich in talent, the field is led by 2015 Cabela’s MWC Team of the Year Ryan Dempsey and Adam Adler.

The pair racked up a total of 609 points after placing third at Cass Lake in north-central Minnesota; fourth at the Detroit River out of St. Clair Shores, Michigan; sixth at Sturgeon Bay of Lake Michigan; and 15th at the Spring Valley, Illinois, tournament on the Illinois River. Along the way, they also tied the Circuit’s all-time big-fish record with a 13-pound, 4-ounce Detroit River giant.

Along with a chance to claim the celebrated title of “World Walleye Champions,” the event offers more than $80,000 in cash and prizes. Plus, sponsor contingencies including Ranger Cup, Abu Garcia, Lowrance Electronics and Okuma add thousands to the total payout.

Launch and weigh-ins are set for Green Bay Metro Park. Walleye fans of all ages are invited to cheer the teams on at the 8 a.m. take-off each morning, then return at 4 p.m. to watch the Championship drama unfold live at the weigh-ins—which are free and open to the public.

Adding to the excitement, on-the-water and weigh-in action will be filmed for national television airing on Federation Angler TV, which appears on the Pursuit Channel.

As a bonus for young walleye anglers, the Cabela’s MWC, National Professional Anglers Association and Pure Fishing will present a Youth & Family Fishing Clinic immediately after Friday’s weigh-in. The first 50 youths will receive rod and reel combos courtesy of the NPAA.

Under the umbrella of The Walleye Federation (TWF), the Cabela’s MWC is open to avid walleye anglers from all walks of life. The 2017 schedule includes qualifiers on the Illinois River March 17-18, the Detroit River April 7-8, Big Stone Lake April 28-29, Green Bay May 19-20, Lake Winnebago June 2-3, Devils Lake July 21-22, and the St. Marys River Aug. 25-26.

Cabela’s, the World’s Foremost Outfitter for hunting, fishing and outdoor gear, is concluding its 15th season as title sponsor of the MWC. Official Circuit sponsors include: Berkley Gulp!, Abu Garcia, Lowe Equipment Attachments, Lowrance Electronics, Mercury Marine, Ranger Boats and The Walleye Federation. Associate MWC sponsors include: AirWave Pedestals, G-Juice, MotorGuide and Okuma. For more information, visit masterswalleyecircuit.com, email [email protected], or call (580) 765-9031.

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