Smartphone fun

Online fishing derby using the app, FishDonkey, will allow anglers to participate during the event.

Otter Tail County, home to 1,048 lakes, is hosting the 2020 Minnesota Governor’s Fishing Opener May 7 -10. One of the goals of the event will be to highlight the lakes in the county, so anglers from all over are encouraged to fish any body of water in Otter Tail County during the event. Media, dignitaries and the public can participate in an online fishing derby as part of the celebration. By simply using an app on their smartphone, any licensed angler will be able to show off their catch, win bragging rights, and have their name placed on a traveling trophy.

Anglers return to Otter Tail County each year to spend time at local resorts and fish their favorite lakes. “We have more lakes than any other county in the United States and each lake is so unique,” said Erik Osberg, the local Governor’s Fishing Opener Committee chair. “This is what makes this place so special and why an on-line fishing derby is the perfect opportunity to showcase all the angling opportunities in the area.”

Osberg added that the local planning committee is teaming up with a Minnesota based company called FishDonkey to give everyone a chance to feel like they are part of the festivities. The free fishing derby, which will start at 12:01 a.m. on May 9 will be a catch, record and release tournament. When participants catch a walleye during the tournament they will place the fish on a measuring device or a ruler and take a picture of that walleye using the FishDonkey app. The longest walleye entered will be crowned champion of the Minnesota Governor’s Fishing Opener. According to FishDonkey, the app “documents each fish and then the fish can be released back into the water immediately. Live leaderboards keep participants engaged and motivated throughout the duration of the event.”

Otter Tail Lake is the largest lake in the county with over 14,000 acres and is known for its excellent walleye fishing. Other species like northern pike, bass, perch and even lake sturgeon abound in Otter Tail Lake. Many lakes throughout the county have great walleye fishing as well and world class crappie and bluegill angling opportunities.

The 2020 Minnesota Governor’s Fishing Opener in Otter Tail County is a chance to get out and make memories on the water. It is also an opportunity to win a new boat. Raffle tickets are available for purchase at numerous locations in and around Otter Tail County. For a complete list of locations visit

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