ROXBURY — More than 300 anglers vied for $3,150 in cash prizes for the largest bass, trout, pickerel and perch during Saturday’s 35th annual Ice Fishing Derby at Roxbury Pond.
Of the prize money, $2,000 was the grand prize for a tagged 17- to 18-inch brook trout, which for the 35th year in a row, nobody caught, derby co-organizer Roland Patneaude said
“We had 318 registrants, which is down by over 200 from last year,” Patneaude said.
The event is sponsored by the Mexico Lions Club.
Randy Knapp caught the largest trout at 1½ pounds and 15¾ inches, netting $150. Shawn Burby won $100 for catching the largest perch at 12¾ inches. It weighed three-fourths of a pound.
Thaddeus Bennett won $200 for first place, catching the largest smallmouth bass. It weighed 3 pounds and was 18 inches long. Taking second place and $150 was Don Kennedy with a 17½-inch fish that weighed 2 pounds. Ian Jacques won third place and $100 for a 17-inch bass that weighed 2 pounds.
Nathan Woods won $200 and first place for the largest pickerel. It was 25½ inches and weighed 4 pounds. Sebastian Weston took second place and $150 with a 22-inch fish at 2 pounds, and Victoria Meader took third place, winning $100 for a 21-inch fish that weighed 2½ pounds.
For many participants, the event was an annual social gathering. There was plenty of ice. Co-organizer Jim Theriault said it was between 30 and 40 inches thick.
The derby was held under an overcast sky that began dropping snow at about 2 p.m. as temperatures slowly dropped.
“It was kind of warm first thing this morning, but it’s 32 degrees now and we’re starting to get a breeze now from this incoming storm,” Patneaude said 16 minutes before the derby ended at 3 p.m.
Theriault announced the winners in the boat launch parking lot and had them come up for their prize money and pose for photos.
The Lions Club then awarded the derby’s top prize of a $450 ice auger to Bob Riley who had the winning ticket. Riley is the owner of towing company and garage MT Pockets of Dixfield.
While other ticket prizes were being awarded, Konnor Robin and his family walked by headed for their car. Konnor was pulling his sister, Kylie Robin, both of Rumford, behind him in a plastic sled coming up from the pond.
“No fish, but I had some bites,” the youngster said.