Ocean City Today

‘Heels and Reels’ event this wknd.

By Managing Editor, Lisa Capitelli | Aug 03, 2017
Photo by: FILE PHOTO Ladies aboard the Brenda Lou released nine white marlins during the Ocean City Marlin Club's eighth annual "Heels and Reels" Ladies Tournament last year. They received $1,512.

(Aug. 4, 2017) Female anglers will run the show this weekend as they compete in the Ocean City Marlin Club’s ninth annual “Heels and Reels” Ladies Tournament, slated to take place Aug. 4-5.

“We have many women who have been with us since the first year,” said Franky Pettolina, president of the Ocean City Marlin Club and co-director of the tournament. “Some of our junior anglers have graduated to adult anglers. It’s one of the most anticipated tournaments on our calendar.”

Anglers are permitted to fish one of two days: Friday, Aug. 4 or Saturday, Aug. 5. Weigh-ins will take place from 5:30-7:30 p.m. at Atlantic Tackle on Sunset Ave. in West Ocean City.

An awards banquet is scheduled for Saturday from 6:30-9 p.m. at the OCMC. Anglers who reel in the three heaviest tuna and dolphin will take home prize money. First, second and third place in the billfish release division will also win money.

Because of the storm and poor fishing conditions, not many boats ventured offshore last weekend. Some headed out this week as conditions improved.

“A few boats fished [Tuesday] and several white and blue marlins were caught just above and in the Washington Canyon,” Pettolina said. “Weather is looking good [for the tournament] and there are some fish around.”

Several boats caught and released marlin during their trips and some mahi and tunas were boated, Pettolina said, all “good signs” for Heels and Reels.

In 2016, more than 200 female anglers fished on 42 boats. Participants caught and released 103 white marlins and four blues – a tournament record. A total of $46,260 was paid out to Heels and Reels winners.

Pettolina said ladies enjoy the “fun and camaraderie and also getting a chance to show the guys that women really do make the best anglers.”

“We see several boats with team shirts made up, or hats and visors,” he added. “It is as much about the fun as it is the fishing.”

A portion of the entry fee will be donated to the Marlin Club Crew of OC Scholarship Fund. For information, call 410-213-1613 or visit www.ocmarlinclub.com.

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