Crappies took center stage Saturday on Lake Minnetonka, attracting 2,000 or more anglers to the annual Minnesota Bound Crappie Contest, forerunner to Saturday’s walleye opener. This is the tournament’s 49th year, held under various sponsors. But few of the previous sessions, if any, have been conducted on such peerless spring days, with a bright sun and blue skies prevailing. Between contest hours of 6 a.m. and 2 p.m. Saturday, thousands of crappies large and small were caught, with Jon Chapman of Woodbury placing first in the Adult Division with a 1.4-pound keeper. The winner of the Junior Division was Josh Hadden, 15, of Excelsior, with a 1.07-pounder. And the biggest winner of all was one of the youngest: 12-year-old Cade Corrigan of the Twin Cities lucked into a boat, motor and trailer by catching a .63-pound crappie — a target size selected secretly beforehand by tournament organizers as a means of awarding the grand prize.
Aaron Thom of Minneapolis with his catch.
Tom Palm, right, and Jeff Twidwell, both of Orono, with a small one.
Tom Kalgren with a big one, 1.27 pounds.