(Lake of the Woods, Minn.) February 16, 2016 — Women Ice Angler Project is a wrap from Cyrus Resort on Lake of the Woods near Baudette, Minnesota. Gathering great photos of women in the sport of ice fishing, the ladies carried the message this sport is definitely for gals to enjoy. Eater-size walleye and sauger provided great meals and a trophy pike (successfully released) topped off the experience. “If we can encourage new women to try this sport, and at the same time raise the bar and mentor women who already love ice fishing but would like to take their passion to the next level, then we’ve succeeded,” Barb Carey said, founder of WI Women Fish and organizer of the Women Ice Angler Project.
An additional goal of the WIAP is to provide quality ice fishing photos showcasing women for tourism and product promotions. Award-winning photographer Hannah Stonehouse Hudson of Stonehouse Photography is part of why sponsors sign on. “The colder it is, the happier I am,” Hudson said. Enclosed find several incredible lo-res photos with more available from Hudson (higher resolutions by request). “I know that sounds weird, but often the light is just better when it is really cold.”
The women anglers were Clam Outdoors Ice Team Pros Barb Carey and Shelly Holland, outdoor writer Kristine (K.J.) Houtman, photographer Hannah Stonehouse Hudson, Clam power stick pros Bonnie Timm and Rikki Pardun, along with long-time fishing instructor Holly Hanson.
Cyrus Resort, a woman-owned lodge for year-round enjoyment on Lake of the Woods, hosted the event. “We were very happy to have this project here and the fishing was great,” owner Lori Vinje said. “There’s so much to offer in our area along with fishing year round: golf courses, small gift shops, snowmobile trails and Zippel Bay State Park. We were happy to see the PR-side of this kind of project to talk about our wonderful area. We want folks to know they’re welcome here all year.” The WIAP gave the accommodations and staff at Cyrus Resort two big thumbs up.
Vexilar appreciates the quality of photos available to sponsors. “We want to encourage anyone to get into fishing; whether different cultures or different ages. We want to support more women getting involved and empower them,” Corey Studer said, promotions manager at Vexilar. “I’m married to a beautiful wife and have two wonderful twin daughters who like to fish. This is a great fit for us.”
Support for the project came from Lake of the Woods, as well. “These ladies do a great job with PR as well as share the message to a group of people I might not be able to reach,” said Joe Henry, Executive Director with Lake of the Woods Tourism. “They’re capturing real life and it gives great ROI and helps us continue to build Lake of the Woods business down the road.” Henry values the videos and photos he has access to as a sponsor. “I’ve pulled many photos and used them in marketing. We always have a need for hi-res, professional photography—especially showing female anglers.”
Outdoor First Media filmed the event and will continue to post photos and stories about the adventure at IceFishingFIRST.com as well as theiceangler.com and facebook.com/womeniceanglerproject. “The biggest part is bringing women into the sport,” OFM’s Keith Worrall said. Built for the entire ice fishing community, IceFishingFIRST wants women to be more visible. “We want their photos and their stories this winter, too.”