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While most folks have found a higher than normal ratio of throwbacks to keepers, at least one monster doormat over the July Fourth weekend has tournament anglers chomping at the bit for the weekend ahead.
By Jim Hutchinson, Jr.  |  July 8, 2019
Capt. John Contello of Just Sayin' Sportfishing got his personal best fluke on Friday, July 5 with this 14-pound doormat caught using a 2-ounce bucktail and 6-inch white Gulp grub on the outgoing tide on Raritan Bay. He was using a Jigging World Nexus rod and 20-pound braid.

It’s a busy weekend ahead tournament wise, for seasoned tournament veterans and rookies alike.

In Forked River there’s the Women’s Club of the Forked River Tuna Club’s 26 Annual Fishing Tournament on Saturday for women and Mermaids (girls age 12 or under). The entry fee for adults is $30 and mermaids fish free.

The adult categories are fluke and junk fish (skate and/or sea robin), while mermaids will be fishing for fluke and/or crabs. Adults supervising Mermaids are not required to be registered anglers.

Anglers’ meeting will be held on Friday, July 12 with doors and kitchen open at 6:30 p.m. and registration at 7:30 p.m. at Forked River Tuna Club, 18 Bay Avenue in Forked River. Tournament fishing/crabbing runs from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. with an awards picnic to follow at 5 pm. For details go to www.forkedrivertunaclub.com.

The 22nd annual Sunshine Foundation Family Fun Day and Fishing Tournament will be held on Saturday with a choice to fish for fluke or bluefish or both. Cash prizes totaling $3000 will be awarded to the top three finishers ($800, $400, $200) based on combined weight of the two heaviest fluke and the same amounts for the combined weight of the two heaviest bluefish.

Entry fee is only $60 per boat by July 7th or $70 after. This includes a complete buffet for the Captain and 3 crew members, and a t-shirt for the Captain. The Captain’s meeting will be held on Friday evening July 12 at 6 p.m. at the American Legion Post #493, 420 Radio Road, Little Egg Harbor. Call Tom at 732-267-6451 or Frank at 908-380-8491.

The 26th Annual Duke of Fluke Tournament presented by Sterling Harbor Marina in Wildwood will be held on Saturday, July 13 with $5,000 in cash prizes. The captains meeting will be held on Friday, July 12 at 7 p.m. at Sterling Harbor; a rain or shine event, the tournament is open to both boat fishermen and kayakers.

For all the rules including fishing boundaries for kayakers and regular entry, visit Sterling Harbor Marina at 1020 W. Rio Grande Avenue in Wildwood, NJ or download the forms at www.sterlingharbor.com. Call 609-729-1425

If you’re on the hunt for doormats from the Raritan to the Rattlesnake and beyond, you also have the Raritan Bay Anglers Club’s 29th Annual Fluke Tournament on Saturday, what organizers call the “Raritan Bay’s largest one day tournament with thousands of dollars of cash and prizes.”

Captains meeting is July 11 at 8 p.m. at the Moose Lodge at 989 Convery Blvd in Perth Amboy. Monies raised from the contest will help support the annual Kid’s Fishing & Casting Derby presented with the city of Perth Amboy. For more information to RaritanBayAnglersClub.org.

Fish two days? You may be interested in the Sandy Hook Bay Anglers’ 38th Annual Two-Day Fluke Tournament on July 13 & 14 out of Atlantic Highlands Municipal Harbor. The longest running tournament in the area benefits many local charities as well as state wide conservation efforts.

The Captain’s meeting starts at 7 p.m. on Friday at the Senior Citizens Building in the Atlantic Highlands Harbor. Late registration, tournament shirts and door prizes are available. Applications available at your local bait & tackle shops or by calling 732-787-4008 or 732-291-1184.

Learn more by visiting the club’s website at www.sandyhookbayanglers.com.

Staten Island Tuna Club will also be hosting their 3rd Annual Richie Addeo Fluke Tournament on Saturday, with lines in at 5 a.m. and out by 3 p.m. With $5,000 in prize monies, first through third place payouts are based on the three heaviest fluke.

The captains’ meeting will be held on Friday July 12 starting at 5 p.m. at Captains Marina on Staten Island. For details text Angelo at 917-440-6959.