Nisswa chamber again able to treat anglers on Gull Lake to free coffee and doughnuts on Minnesota fishing opener

Welcome Wannigan pontoon gets out on the lake after a year off because of COVID-19 pandemic

Miss Nisswa Sam Jackson refills a Gull Lake angler's coffee cup while Lee Seipp helps keep the two boats from bumping during the Nisswa Chamber of Commerce's annual Welcome Wannigan event Saturday, May 15, 2021. Nancy Vogt / Echo Journal

After a year off because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Nisswa Chamber of Commerce got back out on the water for the Saturday, May 15, walleye and northern pike fishing opener to offer anglers on Gull Lake free coffee and doughnuts.

Called the Welcome Wannigan, the tradition dates back more than 60 years. This year's crew included Captain Jay Chaney, owner of Boats and Beyond Rentals who provided and piloted the pontoon boat; Nisswa Citizen of the Year Lee Seipp; Miss Nisswa Sam Jackson; Little Miss Nisswa Lucy Smith; Nisswa Chamber President Pam Dorion; Kalie Jay, with the chamber; and Gina Meixner, with Positive Realty.

Adirondack Coffee provided the coffee and Schaefer's Foods provided the doughnuts.


Find a KLICK photo gallery of anglers on Gull receiving coffee and doughnuts at

Nancy Vogt is editor of the Pineandlakes Echo Journal, a weekly newspaper that covers eight communities in the Pequot Lakes-Pine River areas - from Nisswa to Hackensack and Pequot Lakes to Crosslake.

She started as editor of the Lake Country Echo in July 2006, and continued in that role when the Lake Country Echo and the Pine River Journal combined in September 2013 to become the Pineandlakes Echo Journal. She worked for the Brainerd Dispatch from 1992-2006 in various roles.

She covers Nisswa, Pequot Lakes, Lake Shore and Crosslake city councils, as well as writes feature stories, news stories and personal columns (Vogt's Notes). She also takes photos at community events.

Contact her at or 218-855-5877 with story ideas or questions. Be sure to leave a voicemail message!
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