Save Our Native Species Inc.
S.O.N.S. of Lake Erie Fishing Club
(A 501 C (3) not for profit organization)





SON'S Stuff


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Contact Information:
Jerry Skrypzak

Vice President
Ed Kissell

Don Tombaugh

John Krupinski

Mail: PO Box 3605
Erie, Pennsylvania 16508

Phone/Fax: 814-453-2270


Newsletter The S.O.N.S. publish a monthly newsletter, ('The Bucket") that is mailed to its members. It contains articles and information that is of interest to our readers. 


March 2023 Bucket

Next meeting: Monday March 20th, 2023 at 7:00 PM at the Polish Falcons Club 431 E. 3rd St., Erie. (NOTE THIS IS A WEEK EARLY)

Program: Expert Angler Jeremy Scott will present his program “Walleye 101”

FISHING  REPORT: Even though we have seen some topsy turvey weather throughout February, there was still plenty of opportunity to fish in spite of the lack of ice. My personal observation I have seen many anglers out and about trying their luck. Facebook groups like Presque Isle Bay Anglers may provide more real time view daily about fishing activity.

FROM  THE PI BAY ANGLERS FACEBOOK post is this picture of Tim Tomlin the page administrator and a buddy horsing around while fishing for crappies.



We had 132 people in attendance at our February 2023 General Membership meeting as this photo which was posted on Facebook by Jeremy Scott


John Scherrer held the attention of our members at our February meeting for over an hour while giving his presentation “ Drop Shot Fishing For Perch in Presque Isle Bay”. John said that this technique is used by bass fisherman but he applies it when fishing from docks and piers in and around PI Bay. He ties on a double eyed Spinshot Drop Shot hook and a round dropshot sinker underneath. His favorite bait is a Bobby Garland Baby Shad live minnow color however other plastic worms etc. would work. There are some videos on You Tube with some examples.

I strongly believe that talks by experts like John are the reason for the large meeting turnout.



              John Scherrer                                                                                         




HARRISBURG, Pa. (March 1) – During a special meeting held today, the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) Board of Commissioners gave preliminary approval to a list of proposed fee adjustments for various fishing licenses and permits for the 2024 license year.

"Through these modest fee adjustments, we are keeping pace with the rising costs associated with maintaining vital infrastructure, services, and programs that anglers and boaters deserve and have come to expect," said Robert BJ Small, PFBC President and District 6 Commissioner.  "Our goal is to keep the prices of fishing licenses and permits as low as possible, while still being able to upgrade and invest in the equipment, staff, programs, and facilities, such as our fish hatcheries and hundreds of public access areas, that deliver quality recreation throughout the Commonwealth.  Adjusting fees to match our business needs, when necessary, will ensure that Pennsylvania remains a destination for fishing and boating for a very long time."

Under the proposal, the price of the most common fishing license and permits, a Resident Annual Fishing License, Trout Permit, and Combination Trout/Lake Erie Permit, would increase by $2.50 each in 2024.  Separate increases would be applied to other license and permit categories for non-residents, seniors, and tourists.  If approved, revenues from these fee increases are expected to generate an estimated $2.9 million annually for the PFBC's Fish Fund to support fishing related programs.

In accordance with Act 56 of 2020, which provided the PFBC with the authorization to set fees, the proposed fee adjustments must be given preliminary approval by the Board, be presented during a public hearing, and given final approval by the Board.  Also, in accordance with Act 56, after final Board approval, the fee adjustments will be shared with the Pennsylvania House and Senate Game and Fisheries Committees for their review.

The date for the public hearing has yet to be established and is expected to be announced in the coming weeks.

DON’T FORGET OUR FUND RAISER “THE ICE OUT PARTY” will be held on Sunday March 26th from 1-5 PM at the Erie Shrine Club located at 2525 W. 38th St,, Erie, Pa. 16506 (W 38th St. and Zuck Rd.). Admission is Adults- $10, Kids 15 and under- Toddlers are free. There will be free food and beverages with games and door prizes. Come and Join the Fun!


With great sadness we would like to report the passing of longtime SONS of Lake Erie director Ken Plonski. Ken served on our board of directors for 22 years from 1993-2015. Having served more than 15 years he achieved the status of life members as prescribed in our by-laws. During that time he was an asset to our club and was a big part of our growth. He will be sadly missed.



PA Fish & Boat Commission Shuts Down Electrical Services at North East Marina

Posted on Erie News Tuesday, February 28th 2023, 5:42 PM EST

Updated: Wednesday, March 1st 2023, 9:53 AM EST

The PA Fish & Boat Commission has shut down the North East Marina's electrical service indefinitely due to the system needing replacement.

In fall 2022, it was discovered that the marina's electrical system had damaged wires, and the system itself is too old to repair. All electrical service has since been removed from the docks.

The Commission was informed that repairs would require a completely new electrical system and "extensive infrastructure upgrades" to meet modern building code requirements.

Due to supply chain issues, materials necessary for the upgrade are currently unavailable.

The PA Fish & Boat Commission is currently assessing the possibilities of upgrading the electrical system of the marina.

The marina itself will remain open for boating and docking.

We also learned that since this story was posted that there also are some issues regarding the dredging permits that the PFBC has to keep the channel into the marina open. The permits are issued by the PA DEP and the Army Corps of Engineers. We will keep you posted as we learn more.

3-CU FOUNDING MEMBER BOB HETZ passed away on February 24th, 2023 Bob spent most of his adult life in service to the Lake Erie fishery. Bob was one of the founding members of the3-CU Trout Club which was organized in 1966. 3-CU was the name developed for the 3 clubs that sponsored its organization. They were the Gem City Outdoorsmen, Erie County Sportsmen’s Club and the Wesleyville Conservation Club. We think that Bob was one of the last of the surviving charter members.

For 67 years bob dedicated his life to raising trout for distribution into the Lake Erie tributary streams. During that time millions of fish were stocked.

Bob has been recognized for his efforts with 3-C-U numerous times, probably too many to recall but we will list a few.

In 2012 Bob was awarded the prestigious Ralph W. Abele Conservation Heritage Award by the Game and Fisheries Committee of the Senate of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania on October 18, 2012.

The Ralph W. Abele Award is the highest recognition awarded by the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) to a Pennsylvania citizen who has made outstanding contributions to the conservation and enhancement of Pennsylvania's aquatic resources

At the Pennsylvania Steelhead Associations 2016 Fall Run Banquet held at Crowley's Restaurant Bob Hetz of 3-C-U was honored for his efforts during 50 years of raising millions of fish (Steelhead, Browns, and Brookies) for our local waters, and maintaining 4 and 5 raceways at a time. He received a beautiful Steelhead and Brown Trout Nature Table made by local artist John Ballard of Ballard Woods in Northeast, PA. It was well deserved and long overdue! 

In the spring of 2021 the Pennsylvania Outdoor News honored Bob as the 2020 Person of the Year in honor of his 50+ years of dedication to the Erie Fishery. 

Bob's dedicated efforts have contributed significantly to making "Steelhead Alley" in Erie County, Pennsylvania one of the world's premiere Steelhead fisheries.  The Pennsylvania Steelhead Association joins other appreciative anglers and sportsmen in offering condolences to the Hetz family.

Bob Hetz (Ctr) poses with PFBC Executive Director John Arway (L) and PFBC Commissioner, Ed Mascharka (R) on October 18, 2012 when he was presented with the prestigious Ralph Abele awarded in honor of his dedication and hard work to the PA fishery.

EWPPA PLACED A PORTA POTTY for use by the public on the Holland St. Pier. Let’s keep it clean folks. Thank you Erie Western PA Port Authority




Fish USA News Release--We are very excited to announce that our second annual Walleye-Palooza event will be taking place on March 25, 2023! Stop by the FishUSA Pro Shop at 6960 West Ridge Road Fairview, PA from 10am-2pm to hear walleye tournament champion, charter captain, and FishUSA Pro Staffer Pete Alex (and his mystery guest) spill some secrets on locating and catching Lake Erie walleyes out of Erie, PA

-Learn how to get the most out of your electronics with Garmin expert Greg Richmond

-Take advantage of Pro Shop-only deals

-Sign up for the Ultimate Walleye Giveaway ($1,500 worth of walleye tackle!)

-Enjoy FREE food and refreshments. Admission is FREE! See you all here!


Last summer the PFBC donated 75 used fishing rods to the SONS. They needed some attention and thanks to volunteer Larry Lipinski the rods were cleaned, reels oiled and new line installed. We have distributed this equipment to various organization including Presque Isle State Park, Bathesda Youth Services, Gannon University Fishing Club and others. Most recently 10 rods and reels were donated to General McLane High School’s Life Skills program. SONS Director Jack Bock (3rd from left) and Teacher Zach Lucas (R) along with four of the students. As we posted before, many families of our deceased members have been donating used fishing gear and we are distributing it as recipients are identified.



Above, former SONS of Lake Erie director Bill Henderson (shown seated)  holds up a plaque that was presented to him by SONS President Jerry Skrypzak in commemoration of his hard work and dedicated service during the 11 years that he served as a member of our board of directors. The presentation took place at our February members meeting.

SONS MEMBER AVERY BRINE, the grandson of SONS Director Rich Brine who is a student at McDowell High School and a member of the school’s football team,  was recently selected to participate in the 21st Annual PSFCA East/West All Star game by the Pennsylvania Scholastic Football Coaches Association (PSFCA).  The game will be played on Sunday, May 21, 2023 at the Bishop McDevitt HS Rocco Ortenzio Stadium in Harrisburg PA.

Avery joined our club as a boy and now as a young man makes us proud.


WOULD YOU LIKE TO GET YOUR SONS NEWS LETTER BY EMAIL? If so, send us an email at  list your name, address and note that you would like to change. So far we have about 50 members who have requested the change.

UPCOMING EVENTS: Note: There will be sign up sheets at our March 20th meeting.

Saturday April 1 8-12 East Waterworks Pond 1st Day of Trout kids fishing. Volunteers needed

Saturday April 15 8:30 til Noon Rotary Pavilion Presque Isle State Park Spring Clean Up volunteers needed to prepare and serve lunch to participants.

Saturday April 29th (Time TBD) Waterworks Pond Boy Scout fishing Volunteers needed

Saturday May 6th 9-11 Pond at Harborcreek Township Community Park Family trout fishing volunteers needed.

 SONS of Lake Erie 2023 Winter/Spring General Membership meeting schedule to be held at the Polish Falcons Club located at 431 East 3rd St., Erie, PA at 7:00 PM. The public is welcome to attend.

Meeting Dates:

March 20, 2023 speaker Jeremy Scott

April 24, 2023 speaker Mark Haffley

May 22, 2023 speaker Nolan Pyle


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