One of the state’s longest-running ice fishing events will return for its 59th edition this weekend, as anglers flock to the Milo area for the Schoodic Lake Ice Fishing Derby.

The derby will be staged on Feb. 13 and 14, with proceeds benefiting Milo Fire Department charities and events.

Fish can be caught from Schoodic, Ebeemee, Seboeis and Boyd lakes during the event. A $10 ticket includes entry in the derby and drawing chances for shore prizes. Participation in the derby is not required in order for a person to win the grand prize or any of the shore prizes.

Back in 2014, one of the organizers of the event called it “The Fourth of July of the winter,” and said thousands of anglers regularly show up to compete for top prizes and enjoy the camaraderie at the festive derby. Those anglers also have the chance to catch some hefty fish, with five-pound salmon and 10-pound togue sometimes being weighed in.

A 2020 Polaris Sportsman ATV is this year’s grand prize, while a variety of shore prizes worth more than $5,000 will also be up for grabs.

Fish prizes include $400 to the angler who catches the largest salmon, trout or togue. Second place in those categories is worth $200, while third place pays $100.

In addition, prizes to those who register fish are worth more than $2,000. Among those prizes: An ice auger and a portable ice fishing shelter.

Mike Brissette of Vassalboro shows off a lake trout (left) and a landlocked salmon he registered during the 52nd annual Schoodic Lake Ice Fishing Derby on Saturday, Feb. 15, 2014. Credit: John Holyoke / BDN