2019 International Eelpout Festival™ – February 21st-24th, 2019.


For the past 40 years, and for three days every February, crowds that are more than 10 times the population of tiny Walker, Minn. (pop. 1,069) gather on Minnesota’s third largest lake (112,000-acres), Leech Lake, for a festival named for one of the ugliest bottom-dwelling fish, the eelpout. In a state where it is common to embrace the quirky and find great fun in the most unlikely circumstances and weather conditions, this festival is pure Minnesota fun.


International Eelpout Festival named one of the top “15 Weird Midwestern Festivals You Never knew Existed” by the lifestyle blog BLT, and frankly, we couldn’t be more proud. To view all of the festivals named, and the coverage on the IEV, check out the link below:

15 Weird Midwestern Festivals You Never Knew Existed


ICE CONDITIONS/Traffic Restriction Friday UPDATE – See Update Below – All Arriving Pouters

Friday afternoon update
The RESTRICTED AREA IS NOW AT CAPACITY, so if you are arriving after 12noon today (Friday) plan to set up your pout camp somewhere in the non–restricted “outfield” (see map above) preferably accompanied by a snowplow to help carve out your front yard! View list

Please be advised that we have decided to restrict vehicle traffic in one area of Walker Bay (detailed on the map above).

This will be restricted to Class I & II ATVs and snowmobile traffic only from Friday, Feb 22 at 3PM until Sunday, Feb 24 at 8AM. As of today we, along with the Cass County Sheriff’s Office have not able to get consistent 24” of ice in that area. Encampments and houses can be accessed via full-sized vehicles to set up and tear down in these areas before and after these restriction times, but during the restricted times, this area can only be accessed by Class I, II ATV’s and Snowmobiles. No larger vehicle traffic will be allowed during the restriction times. Both bay accesses (Marine Max & City Park) will be open for normal vehicle traffic throughout the run of the festival, and primary access roads have been plowed accordingly so areas outside of the restricted parameters are open to normal vehicle traffic throughout the run of the festival.
Safety is our #1 priority! PLEASE REMEMBER to stay 25 ft away from each other and 50 feet from the Ridge.
Ice is never 100% safe, but we are implementing these simple restriction guidelines to ensure we provide the best possible scenario for a FUN and SAFE 40th Anniversary International Eelpout Festival celebration.
PLEASE STAY TUNED CONTINUE TO FOLLOW US ON FB as we will be provided road updates, snow removal info and other details for this weekends festivities.




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