Salmon derby starts Friday


The 35th Annual Petersburg Chamber of Commerce King Salmon Derby gets underway this Friday, May 27 at 7 a.m. The derby continues through the Memorial Day Weekend and ends Monday at 5 p.m.

Two tagged fish worth $10,000 and $5,000 will be available for anglers this year. Derby committee member Doug Welde reported the king salmon were tagged on Wednesday morning near the mouth of Wrangell Narrows. The $10,000 prize is sponsored by Alaska Marine Lines and the Petersburg Chamber of Commerce. The $5,000 tagged fish is sponsored by Hammer and Wikan.

Nine volunteers fished all morning on Wednesday for the tagged fish. Just before noon, the bite was on and the two fish were landed and tagged, according to Welde.

Top prize in the derby is $7,000 cash, a derby hat and jacket, and free fish processing by Tonka Seafoods.

Second prize is $3,500 cash and a derby sweatshirt and t-shirt. Third prize is $2,500 cash and derby sweatshirt and t-shirt.

Over $35,000 in cash, gifts and prizes will be awarded to derby participants starting with the largest fish and continuing in order of descending weight at the Thursday night award night at the ANB/ANS Hall on Thursday, June 2 at 7 p.m.

Persons purchasing derby tickets prior to 6 p.m. Thursday, May 26 will be eligible for participation in a drawing for a $250 cash prize.

Prize donations from businesses and individuals exceed $35,000, according to derby committee member Ron Loesch. The derby definitely has the support of the community, and for that, the committee is very grateful, he added.

Anglers are encouraged to read the regulation booklets, notices, and posted maps provided by ADF&G before fishing the derby.

“We’re grateful for ongoing assistance from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game,” Loesch said.

ADF&G rules allow the use of two poles per angler in District 8 waters, but derby rules allow the use of only a single pole per angler for derby participants.

Anglers should be aware that derby rules prohibit the use of downriggers or similar devices while participating in the derby.

Anglers derby fishing from a commercially licensed vessel, excluding charter boats, are reminded to clip the dorsal fin when bringing it aboard while in waters closed to commercial fishing.

The derby will weigh fish entries in the round, but individuals may enter dressed fish at their discretion. (See sidebar for more weigh-in information.)

Derby tickets and derby booklets with complete rules are available at the weigh-in station at the Harbormaster’s office during posted hours, at the Hammer and Wikan and Trading Union hardware stores, Tides Inn, and the Scandia House.

The Petersburg Chamber of Commerce sponsors the derby.

Derby Dates:

7 a.m. Friday, May 27 through 5 p.m. Monday, May 30

Derby Ticket Validation:

When? Beginning at 7 a.m. Friday, May 27

Where? Harbormaster Weigh-in Station

North, Middle, and South Boat Harbor Ramps

Banana Point Launch Ramp (7a.m. – 8 a.m.)

Derby rules specify that fishers must have a validated derby ticket in their possession prior to fishing.

Weigh-in Station hours:

7 a.m. - 9 p.m. Friday, May 27

8 a.m. - 9 p.m. Saturday, May 28 and Sunday, May 29

8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Monday, May 30

Derby weigh station is located at the Harbormaster’s office. All fish brought in must be presented with a validated Derby ticket.

Derby History by the Numbers:

Year Number of fish Winner Weight

2015 364 Scott Stafford 50.9 lbs

2014 325 Karen Malcom 46.4 lbs

2013 217 Rich Lowell 46.5 lbs

2012 309 Thomas Cumps 45.6 lbs

2011 342 Stan Malcom 49.5 lbs

2010 232 Gerry Whitethorn 45.2 lbs

2009 225 Duane Olson 59.8 lbs*

*All time derby record.


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