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Ice on lakes could mean river angling for Governor’s Fishing Opener in Park Rapids

Officials are hopeful that the ice will be out, but they’ll take the governor down to the river, if need be, to find open water.

The long-lasting ice is finally receding on lakes near Park Rapids, where Gov. Mark Dayton will cast a line Saturday in the Governor’s Fishing Opener (GFO).

Officials there are hopeful that the Fish Hook chain of lakes will be clear in time, but said that they’d find open water, on a river, if necessary, to get the governor out in a boat, with a hook, line and bait.

Area businesses and residents are excited about the weekend, which will bring publicity to local tourism efforts.

A Friday night dinner and program will precede the Saturday morning fishing. And the Park Rapids Enterprise proudly points out:

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Park Rapids will be the first GFO community picnic in Minnesota history to culminate with fireworks.

Jason Durham, a kindergarten teacher and 22-year veteran fishing guide, will take Dayton out on the water.