The buzz about tonight's Walleyes Chicago fundraiser at Murphy's Bleachers tops this Chicago Wild Weekend Wanderings.
WALLEYES CHICAGO: Walleyes Chicago Friday Nite Fish Fry & Fundraiser is at Murphy's Bleachers from 8-11 tonight. It should be packed. Club honchos invited people like Mike Osuch (above with the 7-5.5 walleye he caught off Northerly Island on Sept. 11, 2008) and Toni Pellegrino, who caused a major buzz with her catch of a 6.75-pound walleye downtown in October, 2007.
Club secretary Barry O'Flynn e-mailed, ``We have people coming from central Illinois, Indiana, probably see Kristine Houtman- director from the MWC coming down from Minnesota.''
I plan to be there and have talked to a wide variety of people who expect to show, some just to see if there is a buzz and how many come.
It's $30 at the door. There's food, drink, entertainment and drawings for Cubs related stuff and more.
PERCH REOPENS: There will be hundreds repeating the scene above from dawn at Montrose Harbor on Aug. 1, 2008 on Saturday when perch season reopens to all in the Illinois waters of Lake Michigan. And the daily bag returns to 15.
Talked to Mike Repa at Park Bait a few minutes ago and he said all sizes of perch are in Montrose Friday morning, inside and outside of the harbor. They should still be there Saturday morning. Pretty consistently, though spotty at times, through the July closure for perch fishing, perch were around on the lakefront.
After the Rock Bass Rally at Northerly Island Saturday, Steve Palmisano of Henry's reported, ``P.S. Some perch were caught along with the rockies. Saturday morning is the perch opener and I know there are some perch still on the Chicago shoreline of Lake Michigan!!''
Boaters fishing Cal Harbor were doing fairly well all month, and that should continue around the weed beds.
SQUIRREL HUNTING OPENS: Squirrel hunting opens Saturday in Illinois. Hours are one-half hour before sunrise to one-half hour after sunset. Daily bag is five.
Asked about acorns, wildlife biologist Bob Massey said,
``The white oaks I have been seeing have at least an average year or maybe better for acorns. It looks like the red oaks will have acorns this year.''
Iroquois County SWA is the one nearby site that opens Saturday for squirrel hunting. Marseilles SWA opens Sept. 1. Kankakee River SP, Momence Wetlands, Silver Spring SFWA open the Tuesday after Labor Day.
INDIANA STREAMS STEELHEAD: When levels are OK (freak thunderstorms along the lakefront clash zone made for an interesting week), the skamania run continues to be strong. Thomas Harris posted a ``pantless'' account of an excursion on Trail Creek and a bunch of other information at http://greatlakesangler.blogspot.com/.
POND BASS: Big bass are the story on a variety of baits on local retention and farm ponds. See the Midwest Fishing Report from Wednesday for photos of those caught by Gary Rigoni (western suburbs, hit a Berkley Gulp 6 inch Natural Nightcrawler worm), Don Nekoliczak (Lisle, minnow) and Mike Baskovich (Lockport, rooster tail).
KIDS DAY: The all-encompassing Northern Illinois Conservation Club's 2009 Youth Event for those 5 to 17 is Saturday in Antioch. it's got just about everything imaginable: trap shooting, archery, air rifle range, bowfishing instruction, duck calling and making your own turkey call. Cost is $5 and includes lunch and supplies. Go to mynicc.org.
FLY ROD TESTING: One More Cast Fly Shop with the Illinois Smallmouth Alliance is holding a test of various shorter fly rods (6 and 8 weight) at Glenwood Park below the South Batavia Dam on the Fox River from 9 a.m.-noon Saturday.
WADING: It looks like we will luck into yet another good weekend for wading on all local rivers.
SENDOFF: Here's to Mike Conlin, who retires after 38 years with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, today. it is a loss for Illinois and those of us who care about the outdoors.
PERSONAL PICKS: I plan to check out the Walleyes Chicago fundraiser tonight at Murphy's. That will feel strange with Murphy's being right across from Wrigley. I have not been inside Wrigley Field in something like 13 years (a long story). . . . I should be up at the crack of dawn on Saturday to see if the perch really are still in on the lakefront, but with the Walleyes Chicago event that may have to wait for another day. . . . I hope to poke around the woods one morning or evening this weekend for squirrels. . . . Just don't see when the time will be there to do some wading, though I wish I had that time.