Tournament – Reelin’ for Research Fishing Tournament
The fight against childhood cancer and the fight against big fish come together every year at the Reelin’ for Research Fishing Tournament, which in 2018 celebrated its tenth year. A portion of the proceeds from the tournament, held this year on April 28 in Morehead City, go to the Tony Montana Foundation at UNC Children’s Hospital. Reelin’ for Research is proud to say that, as of 2018, they have raised just under $3 million for the cause (with $517,000 of it coming from this year’s tournament alone).
Richard Montana, founder of Reelin’ for Research, says, “It’s not about the money. What matters is we’re making a difference in people’s minds and hearts, and if we do that, the money will continue to flow in.”
While historically an offshore-only tournament, an inshore division was introduced this year. For both, anglers are tasked with getting the largest three-fish aggregate in order to win the trophy. Inshore, the target species were bluefish, striper, flounder, and drum (red or black). The Offshore Division targets were wahoo, dolphin, and tuna (yellowfin or blackfin). Any combination of species was allowed to be weighed in to make the aggregate.
“Carolina Lady” was the winning offshore boat with a total weight of 128.5 lbs. The biggest fish of the day, a 53.6 lb. wahoo, was caught by Matt White on board “Bootlegger,” and Team Triad Commercial won the inshore division.
Both professional and amateur anglers flock from all over North Carolina to fish the tournament each year, with 70 boats hitting the water in 2018. Pediatric oncology doctors and patients alike also love to fish the tournament, seeing it as not only a fantastic opportunity to raise money and awareness for childhood cancer, but also as a fantastic opportunity to enjoy a day on the water.
The Reelin’ for Research Fishing Tournament will take place next year on May 4, and more information can be found at www.reelinforresearch.org.