Presented by Yamaha Motor Corp USA and Warrior Boats LLC.


Contact: Denny Fox, 920-505-0122

Anglers Insight Marketing LLC (AIM™)


Then There Was One: Marinette Hosts Wisconsin State Championship With Record Purse and Possible Record Bags


This one is big. In both prize money and fish, the AIM Weekend Walleye Series Nitro Boats Wisconsin State Championship at the Port of Marinette on Green Bay and environs is pushing the envelope for both a record first-place payout of $10,000, and the potential for record poundage Friday and Saturday, Aug. 23 and 24.

“I’m pretty sure that many of the fish our teams didn’t catch when we postponed our qualifier due to the weather here way back on May 19 will still be here,” said Denny Fox, AIM national tournament director. “Our weather looks perfect, both days, and AIM is posting a first-ever $10,000 payout for first place. We’re rarin’ to go, and we’re also hearing predictions of H-U-G-E weights.”

One of the teams who’ll be on the water Friday morning is headed by Gary Mongelli of Suamico, near where this season began in April. He’s one who’s predicting big weights this weekend.

“We’ve been on fantastic fish near Strawberry Island, northeast of Marinette. We think it’s going to be a fantastic spinner bite. Harnesses all the way. We’re finding some fish and they’re way up high, up to 10 feet from the top,” Mongelli said.

He’ll be concentrating on Wisconsin water only, he said. “I’m thinking right now the average fish up here will be seven pounds.” Let’s say that again. Average. Seven pounds. What’ll it take to be in the running?

“I think it’s going to take a nine-pound average to be in the running for first,” he said.

Brandon McPeak of Waupaca thinks that a nine average may not be enough. Really.

He’s been pre-fishing since last Saturday, in his Mercury 200 Optimax-powered boat, and thinks teams will be finding winners in both Wisconsin and Michigan water.

And, about those weights…

“I would agree (with nine pounds),” he said. But…

”There are some giant fish being caught if you can find the right bites. It could be all of that, and a kicker fish or two on top of that to win it,” McPeak said. Really. A kicker or two better than nine pounds?

“Depending on the day some are doing real good and some are struggling, it all depends. We fished both Michigan and Wisconsin and you’ve got to narrow down. It comes down to water temperature, warmer water from 68 to 72. There are spots that have cooled and the fish are there but they’re mostly not active,” he said. “And we’re jigging, trolling, everything above. It depends on the time of day and the weather. Some guys are going 10 miles and some will go 50. I think you can get fish in any portion, it’s whether you can find the ones,” he added.

One who’ll be heading up to fish all day Thursday is Phil Theisen of Antigo, who will be on the water Friday and Saturday with his wife/partner, Natasha. He fished off Marinette two weekends ago in his Mercury 200 Pro XS four-stroke-powered boat and found nice-size fish, but not the ones that will put him on the stand. So far.

“I’ve found 24 or 25-inch fish, not the real big ones. The bigger ones will hopefully come out of the deeper mud flats and come back on structure. I’m going to start by trolling cranks. People are using crawlers but with cranks I’m getting less sheepshead, and I figure if I keep’em in the water more I’ll catch more walleye,” Theisen said. He’ll be staying in Wisconsin water, and in fact, may be heading south from Marinette.

We’ll see if that 50-plus pound weight per day prediction comes true when AIM teams get the go Friday morning. This is for it all, Wisconsin, including that record first-place $10,000 check, and we’ll also be crowning the Wisconsin 2019 Team Of The Year, who will take home a new 9.9 Yamaha four-stroke kicker.

Teams will meet Thursday for registration and rules starting at 5 p.m. at the Community Rec Center, 2501 Pierce Ave. in Marinette. Boat inspections begin Friday at 5:30 a.m. at Menekaunee Harbor Park on Ogden Street, and the first boat gets the nod at 7 a.m. at the park. They must return each day starting at 3 p.m. The champs will be announced Saturday starting  at 6 p.m. at the park, and the Day One leaders on Friday.

Fan Nation, follow the both days action of the season’s final tournament both days via Garmin Fish & Hunt on our Facebook page. Visit our website for information on all AIM tournaments and soon, how to register for any AIM event in 2020.

Anglers Insight Marketing LLC (AIM™) is a unique tournament organization created and owned by many of the most accomplished and recognizable professional walleye anglers, along with others who share the mission of advancing competitive walleye fishing and making it sustainable into the future.


AIM is committed to marketing excellence on behalf of its tournament competitors, the tournament host communities, and the brands that partner with it. AIM is also committed to maintaining healthy fisheries across the nation by the development of the exclusive AIM Catch-Record-Release™ format which is integral to its dynamic events and unparalleled consumer engagement. For more information about AIM™, AIM Pro Walleye Series™, AIM Weekend Walleye Series, AIM sponsors and AIM anglers, visit

AIM Presenting Sponsors: Yamaha Motor Corporation U.S.A. and Warrior Boats, LLC.


AIM Supporting Sponsors: Mercury Marine, Nitro Boats, Garmin, Navionics, Power Pole, Worldwide Marine Insurance, AirWave Pedestals, Off Shore Tackle, Bismarck Mandan Convention and Visitors Bureau, Marinette WI, Pro Chattrr, Missouri Secrets Tackle, Gemini Sport Marketing, Anglers Avenue pro shop, Moonshine Lures Shiver Minnow, JT Outdoors Products, Fox River Lures and Rods.

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