Big king mackerel migrate to the waters around Key West each winter, prompting a similar migration of anglers to target the species in the annual Stock Island Marina Village King Mackerel Tournament. The 2014 event is set for Friday through Sunday, Jan. 24-26.
The angler who weighs in the heaviest mackerel, also known as kingfish, is to take home a 1908RX center console boat, 115-hp Evinrude motor and Continental trailer -- a prize package valued at $30,000. Second- and third-place finishers receive $3,000 and $2,000, respectively, and cash prizes are to be presented through seventh place. Award amounts are based on having a field of 70 boats.
Cash awards also await the top anglers fishing on boats that measure 23 feet or shorter, and prizes are to be presented to top female and junior anglers as well.
Now in its 18th year, the tournament is headquartered at Stock Island Marina Village, 7009 Shrimp Road on Stock Island just outside of Key West.
Events kick off Friday, Jan. 24, with a 3-7 p.m. registration at the marina. A mandatory captains meeting follows at 7 p.m.
Fishing begins at 7 a.m. Saturday and Sunday, running through 4 p.m. Saturday and 3:30 p.m. Sunday. All boats must return to Stock Island Marina Village for the daily weigh-in.
Awards are to be presented Sunday approximately one hour after the last fish is weighed.
The tournament entry fee is $375 per angler before Jan. 11 and $425 after that date.
Event information: www.fishska.com, Murray Marine at 305-296-0364 or Southern Kingfish Association at 904-819-0360
Key West visitor information: www.fla-keys.com/keywest or 1-800-LAST-KEY
Lower Keys visitor information: www.fla-keys.com/lowerkeys or 1-800-872-3722
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