Visitors from The Netherlands visit Carp Fest and Droppin of the Carp.

Droppin of the Carp Royalty.

Carp Bowl - Football game.

Carp Fest ice fishing tournament.

Carp Fest Euchre tournament.

Carp Fest arts and crafts in Hoffman Hall.

Carp Fest - night torchlit sledding at LaRiviere Park.

A fun-filled event intent on bringing friends, family, and community together for the New Year! Proceeds going to Dropping the Carp Fund and City Park and Recreation Youth Enrichment/Hoffman Hall Activities.
-------------------------------------------------------
Additional Information: Contact Prairie du Chien Tourist Info 1-800-732-1673 (www.prairieduchien.org)

A Carp for All Seasons


CARPIE DIEME -  "SIEZE THE MOMENT"
By Tom Nelson

Park and Rec. Board Nov 16 and City Council  Dec 6, 2011
It was ten years ago when I approached the City Council for the 1st Droppin of the Carp It was kind of a tongue and cheek request to close West Blackhawk for an Hour to have a New Year’s Eve celebration.  Within a day Norb Aschom wrote an article for the La Crosse Newspaper and it was picked up by the Associated Press and it hit the national news media and the Musical group Larry and the Carpettes’ had made their d├ębut.  With events tradition are establish which may help identify and define a community.
 “Lucky the Carp” became the center of attention in the in the Mid-West.  However the common River Carp is a symbol that comes from and represent our greatest resource, the Mississippi River
    The Carp Bowl –is a gathering of our area fire men to watch them take time out and enjoy in friendly completion, an American Tradition of the football bowl season.  Our local HEROS relaxing and enjoy the completion.
    “Kissing of the Carp” to bring good luck, a slant taken for the Chinese for their New Year’s celebration when they serve Carp to bring good luck to their families
    Carp Fest – with the expansion of this event it includes family activities that bring people together for fun and enjoyment.  Using our Parks and Hoffman Hall are great ways to use our community resources in a unique way.
    With this year a new tradition begins with “The lighting of the tree.”  Plans to expand  the lighting is already being discussed with involvement from PDRI and Nick, Nate, and Shawn.
   This is truly is a community celebration that embraces the City during Season The Chamber of Commerce, with the Holiday Parade, PDRI with the Tree lighting, with local business support for the Pyro-technic and light show, the city of Prairie du Chien and Park and Rec . with  the Carp Fest activities, and the Rotary with the New Years’ Day Brunch. What a community celebration for the Holidays.

  • This may be a true  GIFT THAT THE CITY HAS RECIEVED. Lets’ take a minute and reflect what the City of Prairie du Chien has received.  
  • IDENTITY – Community recognition through national, state and local promotion.  The most resent – the Dept. of Tourism promotion on Public Radio 
  • A NEW PARK location on the backwaters of St Feriole Slough – the Gate Way to the Island 
  • GOOD LUCK – Having good luck that has brought us OPPORTINITIES for the community that helped us grow and made positive changes in Prairie du Chien over the past ten year. 
  • COURAGE – CARP PLANTING DAY – adapted from the Japanese tradition, having  the courage in our community to take these opportunities and make the best decisions for our community 
  • LIGHTING OF THE TREES – As we lite up the dark December skies with the lights in Lucky Park, it symbolizes Lighting up of the HOPES AND DREAMS we all have for a better future. 
  • HONORING OR HEROS AND COUNTRY – Starting with 9-1-1 we honor our fallen, our armed forces serving us , and our Country with the 1st Pledge to our flag and the singing of God Bless America. This is a gathering of all of the People brought together to celebrate a new beginning..

   It’s obvious that the Holliday’s are a special time of the year for all of us.  I hope in some small way we can bring a Positive, Fun, Uplifting, opportunity for our Community and Visitors.  And in some way with the “Kissin’ of that Carp”  it brings a continued good luck to our great community of Prairie du Chien.
 

GOOD LUCK TO OUR GREAT COMMUNITY OF PRAIRIE DU CHIEN.


Photographs 2011

Catching Lucky the Carp.
It would be quite a thrill to catch Lucky, a giant carp that will be lowered from a boom in Prairie du Chien on New Year's Eve. Thanks to Mike Valley, lifelong commercial fisherman and the owner of Valley Fish & Cheese in Prairie du Chien, three people will get to accompany him on Sunday, December 11, when he goes out on the Mississippi River with a 400 foot gill net to snare this year's honored fish. (
More...)


News Articles from Around the World!
Well, around the world may be a bit of an exaggeration. But, you get the idea! (Link to 2011 Album)






Lucky the Carp Coloring Contest


New for 2011. The Carp Coloring Contest began on December 12 and lasts through the 20th Age group divisions: 6 and under, 7-11 year olds and 12-17 year olds Winners announced December 21st. Top 3 age group winners receive award, picture in paper and multiple web pages! All pictures displayed at Hoffman Hall during Carp Fest! (Link to 2011 online album)


Bowling at Timber Lanes Bar and Grill

BOWLING PARTY at Timber Lanes Sports Bar and Grill is always a fun event for kids of all ages. Great family fun. (Link to 2011 online album)



Hoffman Hall Basketball


Hoffman Hall
gymnasium attracts kids and adults as well. Hoops provides an excellent activity to chase away the winter doldrums. Youth triathlon was also featured for those who wished to participate.  (See album here.)




Hoffman Hall – Pool Activities
Week long activities included open swimming, adult lap swim, swim lessons, and kayaking. A fun time could be had by all. (See 2011 album here.)



Hoffman Hall – Carp Fest Run/Walk
Participants ran or walked along a new 3.5 mile course. The weather, which was foggy, and cool, brought out five runners and two walkers. All enjoyed the morning exercise. (View online 2011 album)


Hoffman Hall – Kayaking
Week long activities included open swimming, adult lap swim, swim lessons, and kayaking. A fun time could be had by all. (See 2011 album here.)



Hoffman Hall – Jamming
Hoffman Hall was the stage for musical groups jamming and making music to being in the New Year. (See 2011 Album here.)





Football game between Prairie du Chien and Mar-Mac Fire Depts.
The touch football game between Prairie du Chien and Mar-Mac Fire Departments always brings out the good sportsmanship and camaraderie. The game is sponsored by Go America of Marquette, IA. (See 2011 photos here.)

Dropping of the Carp – Preparations
Preparations began by a work crew on a dreary, rainy, sleeting, snowy, blustery day. The day before brought sunny moderate weather. What a change!  (View 2011 album here.)


This is it! Dropping of the Carp.
This is it! Meet the party goers. See who kissed Lucky the Carp for a years worth of good luck. See the first Carp Fest Page. Meet the newly crowned Carp Fest King and Queen – Tom and Kathy Nelson. (View 2011 Album)

Carp Fever- Gettin' Lucky!

Prairie du Chien...It would be quite a thrill to catch Lucky, a giant carp that will be lowered from a boom in Prairie du Chien on New Year's Eve. Thanks to Mike Valley, lifelong commercial fisherman and the owner of Valley Fish & Cheese in Prairie du Chien, three people will get to accompany him on Sunday, December 11, when he goes out on the Mississippi River with a 400 foot gill net to snare this year's honored fish. Persons are eligible if they make a $1.00 donation to the 'Droppin' of the Carp' committee, with all proceeds going to the event. The winners will be announced on December 10.
   Valley said, 'They really won't have to work but they can help make noise to scare the fish into the net."  What happens if he catches more than one carp?  "We'll pick out the fattest, best-looking carp to be Lucky.'  It's going to be the 'prettiest' fish, if a carp can be described as pretty. (Photo,left, from 2010)
   Just in case the river is frozen, there's a reserve plan....a carp is on ice in Valley's freezer.
     On a related note, the committee is accepting nominations for Carp King and Queen to preside over the festivities. "We try to keep ahead of that crystal ball thing they do in New York City," said Tom Nelson, the originator of the carp drop. The ten criteria for selection include someone who knows the local DNR warden by his first name and someone who has used a carp tail for a fan to cool off with.
   Nominations may be sent to Droppin of the Carp, Attn. Royalty Committee, 128 South Prairie Street, Prairie du Chien, WI 53821. The deadline is December 26.
                                               
                                            -30- With Permission by Norb Aschom-Prairie du Chien