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Governor’s Surf Fishing Tournament


By Karen Leskie, Wildlife Technician

The 19th Annual Governor’s Surf Fishing Tournament will be held Sunday, Oct. 3, 2010. Once again anglers from New Jersey and neighboring states will descend upon the beaches of Island Beach State Park in hopes of catching the longest fish of the day. The tournament aims to encourage youngsters and adults to learn more about surf fishing while taking advantage of a great family activity. Funds raised by the tournament go toward marine resource conservation and education.

Despite a foggy start to the 18th annual tournament, over 800 participants enjoyed a day of fishing off the beaches of Island Beach State Park. Contestants caught blackfish, bluefish, kingfish, striped bass and weakfish. A total of thirty prizes were awarded in categories for children, teens and adults. However, the grand prize went to Gene Brendel of Nutley, with a 32-inch striped bass. DEP Division of Fish and Wildlife Director, Dave Chanda congratulated Mr. Brendel with a plaque and two rod-and-reel combinations. Also, Mr. Brendel’s name has been engraved on the Governor’s Cup, which is on permanent display at Island Beach State Park.

Since its inception, the tournament has generated more than $120,000 for various marine education and restoration efforts, construction of access ramps for disabled saltwater anglers, surf fishing instruction programs and equipment, specialized wheel chairs that provide beach access to the disabled and elderly, plus the purchase of the first mobile automatic heart defibrillator for use at Island Beach State Park.

For more information about the Governor’s Surf Fishing Tournament or to receive a registration form, visit or call (609) 748-4347.

New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife (along with our co-sponsors: New Jersey Division of Parks and Forestry, New Jersey State Federation of Sportsmen’s Clubs, Jersey Coast Anglers Association and New Jersey Beach Buggy Association) would like to thank the following organizations for contributing to the success of the 18th Annual Governor’s Surf Fishing Tournament in 2009:

  • Canyon Gear
  • Eagle Claw Fishing Tackle Company
  • Grumpy’s Bait & Tackle
  • Legal Limits Company
  • Manns Bait Company
  • O Mustad & Son, Inc.
  • Sportsman’s Center
  • Stanley Jigs, Inc.
  • Surf Rocket
  • Tru-Turn, Inc.
  • TTI-Blakemore Fishing Group
  • Wright & McGill Company

A special thanks to Kathy Johnston of Kathy Johnston Custom Artwork for creating the annual tournament t-shirt design. Also thanks to Cannon Gear for printing the t-shirts.

Get Outside and Enjoy One of New Jersey’s Natural Resources

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