Aug. 17, 2015
Members of the Wisconsin Young President Organization (WYPO) are ambitious, hard-working and successful executives at a young age. While work can keep them busy, they know the importance of quality family time and so the group embarks each year with their “alumni” group––the Wisconsin President Organization (WPO)––on a Father’s Day fishing trip.
This June, we had the pleasure of hosting the group of dads––and their kids and grandkids––at Aikens for the second consecutive year. The lively group rented out all of Aikens to have the place to themselves for Father’s Day.
“Aikens is the perfect place for a family trip,” said group leader Jim Deleeuw. “The cabins are the best we’ve ever been in, the lodge is beautiful, and of course Pit and Julie are wonderful hosts.”
The group enjoyed good fishing during their days here, with Terry Daniels and his son, Tyler catching a 46-inch and 45-inch pike to claim big fish honors, and many quality walleyes being caught each day.
“For a group like ours, it’s good the lodge provides all the equipment so you don’t have to haul everything up there,” said Jim, who scouted several fishing lodges to find the right place to bring the group, which has been doing the annual Father’s Day trip for over 40 years. “The shorelunch facilities at Aikens can accommodate 30 people or so altogether, with a nice covered area for cooking, so that was perfect for us, too.”
The group also took advantage of Big Molly’s. “It was a nice, low-key setting. People socialized, played pool and played cards,” Jim said. “One of the guides happened to be a school teacher, so he would teach my granddaughter Audrey card tricks at night.”
Audrey is only 8-years-old, but this impressive young lady has already been going on the trip for four years. She had fun playing with Annika, Marty and Natasha and jumping on the trampoline, but make no doubt about it: this girl can fish.
“She goes fishing the whole time we do,” said Jim, who brought his daughter, son-in-law and three grandkids, Taylor (17), Nick (15) and Audrey (8). “She does a great job, and has a lot of fun.”
All the kids had fun, and the dads seemed to have fun just watching the kids enjoy the experience. “Our kids become friends with kids from other families on these trips, and they stay in touch on Facebook all year.”
Next year, the group is coming back to Aikens! We can’t wait to host them again and, hopefully, get some more delicious homemade cookies sent along by Jim’s wife.
“We want that recipe,” said Julie. “This is a great group to have at Aikens, and Jim does such a nice job organizing this trip. He puts a lot of time and effort into and you can tell he wants everyone to have a wonderful experience.”
Above: Jim Deleeuw with his daughter, Jennifer, and his 8-year-old granddaughter, Audrey.
Below: The group enjoyed the scenery and wildlife, such as this moose with its twin calves.
Above: Tyleer Haag landed a Master Angler perch, at 13 inches.
Below: Jim’s 17-year-old granddaughter, Taylor, made the Century Club with four walleyes totaling 101.5 inches.