The Big Pine & Lower Keys Chamber of Commerce 22nd Annual Dolphin Tournament, held at the Sugarloaf KOA June 5 – 7, had 46 boats participating.
The winning boat was Tampa-based Mama Money with angler Walter Harrell taking the top prize, with a 44.20-pound dolphin. The tournament’s top female angler was Tanya Toro of Miami Springs, who caught a 24.6-pound dolphin while fishing on the boat Half Time with Captain Spencer Deno. In the Junior Division, Randy Culmer of Marathon took first place fishing on Silent Hunter. The 15-year-old caught a 21.1-pound dolphin.
The tournament was supported not only by the Chamber and their sponsors, but also by the Monroe County Tourist Development Council’s Fishing Umbrella, which provided funding for advertising that brings many anglers to the lower keys area to enjoy genuine hospitality.
3rd Annual Ladies Dolphin Tournament of the Florida Keys
A windy and rainy day did not deter 72 lady anglers fishing aboard 29 boats June 13 in the 3rd Annual Ladies Dolphin Tournament of the Florida Keys. When the scales closed at 5 p.m. Saturday, Captain Justin Matson fishing out of Bud N‘ Mary’s Marina on Hey Papa edged out second place by just one tenth of a pound. Anglers Holly Given, Diana Harris, Jessica and Amber Spaulding, from Islamorada, would weigh three fish totaling 36.9 pounds. First place tiaras and trophies, sponsored by Riva Motorsports were awarded to the ladies along with a gift bag full of valuable prizes and a check for $3,000. Captain Matson received a Guy Harvey print sponsored by Yamaha Outboards and Caribee Boat Sales. Mate Drew Rohnehouse received a new Redbone fishing rod.
Second place, sponsored by Upper Keys Marine Construction, went to Denise Cone, Michelle Bennett and Lindsey Diehl from Tavernier, fishing aboard Contagious with Captain Brian Cone. The team weighed in a 10.1, 11.0 and 15.7 for a total of 36.8 pounds. The team took home a gift bag full of items donated by local businesses, trophies, plus a check for $1,500.
Although the anglers were a little beat up from the heavy seas, everyone enjoyed the awards banquet with the beautiful view of the sunset out the big bay windows at the Florida Keys Elks Lodge at Mile Marker 92.5 in Tavernier. The awards ceremony was fit for the Queens of the fishing world. “It was great to be able to fill our top 10 winner’s gift bags with such wonderful items from businesses throughout the Upper Keys” stated tournament director Dianne Harbaugh.
7th Annual Spartan Fishing Tournament
Key Largo, FL
August 6 – 7
Hooked on Kids Charity Fishing Tournament
Key West, FL
September 11 – 13
S.L.A.M. (Southernmost Light Tackle Anglers Masters)
North Palm Beach, FL
Anchorage Aweigh Fishing Tourney
August 8 – 9
36th Annual Junior Angler Tournament
August 14 – 15
37th Annual Junior Angler Fishing Tournament
West Palm Beach, FL
Anglers For The Cure