Northwoods Spotlight - 83 year old musky angler July 3Submitted: 07/03/2013
Story By Marisa Silvas

THREE LAKES - There are several musky fishing leagues in the Northwoods. Near Three Lakes, they have an angler who is fishing competitively in his 80s.

10 years ago, John Schmidt found himself looking for an activity to keep busy. He decided on fishing - but not just any fish.

"Musky Fishing is a challenge and you're looking to catch that musky to overcome that challenge," Schmidt explained. "And the bigger the fish, the bigger the thrill."

At 83 years young, John is the oldest member of the Monday Night Musky League.

"We have a great bunch of competitors and we have a lot of fun," John adds. "When you hook 'em, they have more tricks than any fish that you could imagine. The antics that they go through to get loose from that lure, it's unbelievable."

Schmidt finds many ways to describe the thrill of the catch.

"Musky fishing is like, comparable to chasing attractive women and succeeding. This is like probably, Brett Favre throwing 6 touchdown passes. You can't match that adrenaline. Unless I saw Frank Sinatra (laughs) then I'd get an adrenaline rush also. But those are the olden days."

He and his fishing partner Gary Myshak, make quite a pair.

Myshak says, "To see him out here at this age competing every Monday night, and still fishes by himself catching muskies, gives me hope for when I get to his age that I'll still be able to do this."

Over the years, John's caught close to 100 muskies. But he says he doesn't have to catch one, to have a good time on the water.

"Many people say, how can you go out day after day after day and not catch a fish," Schmidt explains. "That's not the point. The point is when you catch the fish, that's what you're looking for."

Myshak chimes in, "when you've got a guy like Schmidty, it's always a good time, no matter if you catch a fish. This guy's a machine. He keeps moving and as long as you keep moving, you keep living."

"As long as I can stand up in a boat, I'll be out here chasing these, what I call freshwater sharks," says Schmidt.

Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
| Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com


Play Video

MINOCQUA - Every year thousands of kids go hungry. 

On Saturday nearly 600 volunteers from the Northwoods decided to help feed some of those children. 

The "Food for Kidz" organization, invited people to Lakeland Union High School, to help package non- perishable goods.

 The packages will be donated worldwide and to nearby food pantries.

Within the past eight years volunteers have packaged one million meals.

 Last year was the first year the organization started donating to local food pantries. 

This year volunteers will give 30,000 meals to the Northwoods community.

"It's just the recurring exuberance of the people that come in and do the packing we have many, repeat people that come year after year," said "Food for Kidz" Co-chairman John Breiten. 

+ Read More

Play Video

RHINELANDER - We all have Tylenol and other medicines in our cabinets at home, but what do you do with them when they expire?

Saturday, local officials helped people properly dispose of those unwanted medicines as part of Wisconsin's Prescription Drug Take Back Day.

+ Read More

Play Video

RHINELANDER - A simple grooming process many people take for granted helps keeps John honest with himself.

"You can't think too far ahead, at least that's the situation I find myself in," John said.

Convicted of drunk driving seven times, John -- who Newswatch 12 is only identifying by his first name -- faced a harsh reality when he ended up in prison after three arrests in just 13 months.

+ Read More

WAUSAU - Scott Walker faced a tough crowd at times in Iowa during his failed presidential bid. Now, an undercover video released this week may show those protesters were planted on purpose.

The Journal Sentinel reported the videos show activist Scott Foval bragging about disrupting a Walker rally in Iowa. Those videos were released by conservative activist James O'Keefe.

Foval talks about bringing people out of state into Wisconsin, but doesn't give a reason why.

+ Read More

Play Video

RICE LAKE - The Merrill football team doesn't feel it got the respect it deserved when WIAA playoff brackets came out last weekend. The Bluejays shared a Great Northern Conference championship.

But they were pinned to a number 8 seed, the lowest in the bracket, and travel to face top-seeded Rice Lake in a Division 3 Level 1 game Friday night.

Recent history doesn't favor Merrill in the playoffs. It has lost six straight playoff openers, dating to 2009.

+ Read More

Play Video

WAUSAU - People often leave unused prescriptions in their cabinets at home. But Wisconsin's Attorney General hopes you turn those prescriptions in Saturday to help solve a growing problem.

October 22 is Wisconsin's Prescription Drug Take-Back Day.

Attorney General Brad Schimel said more people die from accidental drug overdoses in Wisconsin than from car crashes.

+ Read More

MINOCQUA - By the time most of us finish breakfast, we already start planning what to eat for lunch.

For some kids all around the world, that next meal sometimes never comes.

The Food for Kidz Minocqua committee will lend a helping hand to change that Saturday morning.

Lakeland Union High School's common area will transform into a full-blown assembly line.

Food for Kidz volunteers will pour and pack ingredients into plastic bags.

The goal is 175,000 packed meals.

Food for Kidz needs more volunteers by tomorrow to meet that goal.

"If you haven't experienced this, come out and try it and you'll go away with just a great feeling," said Food for Kidz co-chair John Breiten.

Kids and adults of all ages are welcome to walk in to volunteer.

The food packages will be shipped off to anywhere from Honduras to Mozambique.

Some special meals will be set aside and sent to local communities in the Northwoods.

"It's just a great, fun community event. I think the kids especially take something away that they are giving beyond themselves," said Food for Kidz sponsor and Lakeland Union High School Spanish teacher Karen Roerich.

Walk-in volunteers are welcome to attend either packing shift tomorrow morning.

The first shift is from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. The second shift is from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

If you can't make it out to Lakeland Union High School Saturday, donations are always welcome.

Call John Breiten at 715-686-7570 for more info.

+ Read More
+ More General News

Click Here