Daily Fishing and Outdoor Report
(Above) The "Chamber" building when the Derby first began.
The Chamber is bailing on the Long Beach Island Surf Fishing Classic:
I’m going to pass this on, as is. It is a tough message to digest. It means the Chamber is bailing on the Classic/Derby. I was fearful that the combined pressures from the Superstorm and the passing of eternal supporter Frank Panzone might lead to this. It should be realized that the event had been going through some turbulent times, as much due to a slightly waning angler support – though sign-up numbers had been more up than down – as much as Holgate’s disappearance and tougher data tracking expense for the Chamber.
I would like to think the event can be maintained through tackle shops and other supporters, maybe businesses who like the idea of 1,000 anglers hanging around LBI for 8 weeks. I think I would need to be a major player and I’m running on empty, energy-wise.
In that same vein, this seemingly small plug-pulling makes my blood run a little cold. As noted, I’ve had the mick kicked out of me by the storm and the disappearing of Holgate. I hate to even ponder it but it might be time to think about motoring off into the sunset. I’ve had an amazing run on LBI. I wouldn’t trade a minute of it in for time I spent in even the most exotic lands out there, including a couple decades in Hawaii. If I were to go, it would be a big move. I have contacts in Costa t Rica who would machete me a clear patch of seaside forest to build my lean-to – where I’d lie for a few minutes, right before rushing back to my ultramodern split-level rancher with air conditioning and over 2,000 channels of satellite TV.
(Below: You don't need a buggy to be part of the Derby.)
I’d like to think anglers will also rally for the Classic, but, truth be told, Derby-ites have been a fairly fickled crew since the event’s get-go. I’m hoping they would fickle positively this fall and enter as a show of support.
I’m willing to listen to input, including those who might say good riddance to the contest. If you want to email me at email@example.com I’ll read and pass on all communiques. A lot easier is simply voicing your thought at tackle shops.
(Below: The "Seminar" might go on.)
Dear LBI Surf Fishing Classic Committee Members,
After much discussion and careful consideration, our Board of Directors has had to make decisions on how our organization can best meet the demand of this post storm environment. It was determined the Chamber of Commerce can no longer continue its role of organizing and running the LBI Surf Fishing Classic.
We remain committed to promote local recreational fishing, including contest and tournaments, through our online calendar of events, press release distribution, and other marketing avenues. Please send me emails with the details of your events.
Over the next few months, with the help of Sue from Surf City Bait and Tackle, we will be developing a plan to return pro-rated 2012 registration fees to the anglers. We are considering sending letters to the anglers with the option to either return the unused portion of their fee or donate it to a Sandy relief fund that has been given non-profit charitable organization 501(c)(3) status by the IRS.
We will return donated cash prizes to the donors.
We plan to continue the Annual Surf Fishing Seminar provided the members of the Surf City Anglers are willing to continue their participation and Ship Bottom will allow us to use the beach.
Thank you all for your dedication and service.