Get ready. Set. Fish! Yes, indeed, folks - The Fisherman's 2013 Dream Boat Fishing Challenge is about to begin. Open only to The Fisherman subscribers, this highly anticipated, season-long fishing contest kicks off at 12:01 on April 15 and runs through November 30. Last year's winner, Scott Kaelin, walked away with a brand new boat - and also won the second prize trip to Zancudo Lodge in Costa Rica! Incredible luck for sure - but it just goes to show, you've got to be in it to win it.
A QUICK SYNOPOSIS
If you've taken part in this great competition before, you know the basic rules. For our new subscribers, however, here's a short and sweet synopsis. Entry is simple: named subscribers of The Fisherman Magazine (not entire households) are eligible once their subscription has been paid. Simply catch a fish that matches or exceeds the minimum qualifying weight for any specified species categories, weigh it at an official Fisherman weigh-station, and send your certified entry slip, along with a copy of your subscription label and a photo of you and your trophy to The Fisherman within ten days of the weigh-in. That's all it takes for a chance to participate in a whopping eight prize drawings with a boatload of really neat fishing stuff up for grabs.
But wait - there's more. At the conclusion of the challenge, the 15 heaviest fish for each species receive tickets for entry in the "Dream Boat Raffle Drawing" for the grand prize - a beautiful 2013 21-foot Cobia 217 CC (Center Console) boat with a Yamaha 150 Horsepower outboard motor. The number of Dream Boat Raffle Drawing tickets you'll receive corresponds to your finish in each species category. First place receives 15 tickets, second place gets 14 tickets and so on down the list until the 15th place finisher gets a single ticket. Yes, we did say 15th place - we've expanded your chances this year to make it into the Dream Boat Raffle by five places in each species category. That's 40 more people with a chance to take home the grand prize boat.
In addition to the 2013 Cobia 217 CC, the grand prize also includes a Raymarine Dragonfly Electronics Package including a Raymarine Dragonfly CHIRPSonar with DownVision™, Raymarine a65 Touch Screen MFD and a Raymarine Ray55 VHF radio, along with a mount from Global Fish Mounts. The following bonus prizes also go to the winner if he or she is present at our live drawing (location to be announced): A St. Croix TSWC70MF fishing rod, a Daiwa Saltist STTLD30SH Reel, a gallon of bottom paint from Interlux, Trigger X Bait, Owner Hooks, Berkley Big Game Line, and Tsunami Lures. If the grand prize winner is not present at the live drawing, the bonus prizes will be raffled to anyone attending the drawing.
NEW TWISTS, MORE DRAWINGS
As is always the case, all fish entered in The Fisherman's Dream Boat Challenge must be caught within the continental United States in a sporting manner using rod and reel only, and past Dream Boat Grand Prize winners are not eligible to compete in the grand prize drawing.
Aside from the Grand Prize drawing, we've expanded prize categories to include 2nd to 8th place prize drawings. These categories are open to all participants who enter a fish above the minimum weight in a category. The top 15 entrants for each category will receive one ticket for each drawing. That includes the second drawing for a five-night stay for two at Zancudo Lodge in Costa Rica. This prize covers accommodations, meals and fishing for two for five nights.
The second through eighth place drawings are open to all who submit qualifying fish - not just the top finishers - will offer a tremendous range of prizes including the trip to Zancudo Lodge, two Raymarine Dragonfly CHIRPSonar with DownVision™ packages, a Daiwa Saltist STTLD30SH Reel, a St. Croix TSWC70MF fishing rod, Costa Del Mar Sunglasses, a Storm® Typhoon jacket and more. The Grand Prize winner is not eligible for 2nd-8th place drawings.
MORE WAYS TO WIN!
As if that's not enough, don't forget that the winner of each species category will receive a Largest of Species prize, a robust package that includes a fish mount from Global Fish Mounts, a pair of Costa Del Mar Sunglasses, a pair of Storm® Typhoon Gloves, lures from Trigger X, lures from Tsunami, a spool of Berkley Big Game Fishing Line and a package of fishing hooks from Owner Hooks.
There's also our Fish of the Month prize: A St. Croix TSWC70MF fishing rod and Daiwa Saltist STTLD30SH Reel, to be awarded to the angler catching the largest fish during the designated month for each selected species.
Lastly, the Top Ten Finalist Category rewards the ten heaviest fish in each species category with yet another bag of fishing goodies, including Trigger X Bait, Owner Hooks, Berkley Big Game Line and Tsunami Lures.
All this information may seem like a lot to digest, but it really boils down to this: buy a subscription, enter a fish that ranks in the top 15 for any species category, and hope that one of your hard-earned raffle tickets is pulled at the awards ceremony. The big winner walks away with a boat - but there are many chances for additional prizes and anyone who participates is bound to enjoy both the challenge and camaraderie that come from being part of The Fisherman's Dream Boat Challenge.