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Vintage Blue Bait Bucket  "Fun Fishing Find"

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It was 1965 and Jon was up with his family on their annual summer vacation on Lake Superior north of Duluth, Minnesota. They were staying, as they always did, at Elving's Mighty Fine Cabins just a stone's throw from the lake. He had only one day left and Jon was determined to catch a monster lake trout so he could secure bragging rights with his friends back home. He walked into the Beaver Bay Bait and Tackle Company to pickup up a some more minnows, as he had exhausted his supply over the past week of futile fishing.

"Can I help you there?" Asked red-plaid shirted clerk, head buried in a newspaper.

"I just need some minnows."

"Going for the lake trout are ya now." The clerk responded with a heavy northern Minnesota accent.

"Yes, haven't had much luck yet."

"Did ya add the coffee to yer bucket then?" He said, lifting his eyes just above the newspaper's edge.

"Coffee?" Jon responded with a truly puzzled look on his face.

"Oh sure, ya have to pour some coffee into your bucket... it makes them shiners more lively ya know. The trout can't resist 'um. Do you have yer bait bucket with ya?"

"Yes I just need a couple of dozen minnows." Jon said, setting his Frabill Bucket on the counter.

The clerk walked to a large metal barrel with a small net and scooped up a pile of flopping minnows and dumped them into Jon's bucket. Then he reached back behind the cash register and grabbed a large thermos and proceeded to pour several cups of coffee into the pail with the minnows.

"There, that should wake them little guys up."

Jon paid the man and made his way out of the shop, his face still struck with befuddlement. Two hours later, he was on the end of Elving's Mighty Fine Cabins boat dock, reeling in the biggest fish of his life.


This super cool Fabrill's Frabilite Minnow Bucket features a blue metal bucket with a styrofoam insert. The metal outside has a nice retro graphics of two guys fishing in a boat. There is just the right amount of surface rust spots to make this a great decorator piece for a lodge look decor. The styrofoam is in pretty decent shape with a few small chips near the bucket handle. The bucket stands 13" tall and is 12" in diameter. Inside is also in pretty good shape, just some dirt spots and the like from years of bait holding.

Would look great at the cabin, lake cottage or home with retro hunting & fishing decor.
Greg Boydston
Dee Ann Boydston

Vintage Blue Bait Bucket "Fun Fishing Find"