Superstorm Sandy's aftermath will not halt the 22nd annual Governor's Surf Fishing Tournament slated for Sunday at Island Beach State Park.
“This is a great annual event that shows off our state park and offers some terrific fishing,’’ said DEP Commissioner Bob Martin. “But it has even more meaning this year, showing once again the resiliency of our state and residents, and the recovery of the Jersey Shore after Superstorm Sandy.’’
The tournament is also a fundraiser for the park. Proceeds are used to provide beach access to elderly and disabled people, surf fishing instruction programs and equipment, marine education and restoration efforts, according to the state Department of Environmental Protection.
The tournament has generated more than $130,000 since it began in 1991.
Whoever catches the overall largest fish during the event wins the "Governor's Award," and has his or her name engraved on the Governor's Cup, which is permanently displayed at the park.
Seaside Park resident Bill Sheppard took the grand prize last year. Winners who catch the largest fish in a variety of species and age group categories can win fishing equipment.
The registration fee is $20 for ages 18 and up. Registration for ages 13-17 is $5. Registration is free for children 12 and under.
anglers may be asked to verify their compliance with the New Jersey
Saltwater Recreational Registry Program. They must be registered before participating in the event. To register, go to http://www.nj.gov/dep/saltwaterregistry/ and follow the instructions on the page.
The tournament is sponsored by the DEP's Divisions of Fish and Wildlife and Division of Parks and Forestry, the New Jersey State Federation of Sportsman's Clubs, the Jersey Coast Anglers Association and the New Jersey Beach Buggy Association.
For more information on the tournament or to receive a registration form please visit: NJFishandWildlife.com/gsft.htm or call (609) 748-4347.
Island Beach State Park is located in Berkeley Township in Ocean County. For more information on the park, visit: http://www.state.nj.us/dep/parksandforests/parks/island.html