Derby Begins; Big Bass Tips the Scale
Mark Alan Lovewell

Autumn is in the air and there is no better evidence than the sight of pickup trucks loaded with fishing rods and gear. The 65th Martha’s Vineyard Striped Bass and Bluefish Derby opened on Sunday; so far there are 1,400 fishermen registered.

The biggest striped bass weighed in at the Edgartown headquarters is a 32-pounder brought in Wednesday morning by Evan D. Metropoulous, a boat angler with a reputation for loving to be on the water and a persistence in catching big fish.

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During Derby, Grab a Rod or Be a Fish Out of Water
Mark Alan Lovewell

The 65th annual Martha’s Vineyard Striped Bass and Bluefish Derby opens Sunday morning at a minute past midnight. The fishermen are waiting.

George Moran of Oak Bluffs will be out there. At 64, he is almost as old as the derby. “For me it is wonderful being outdoors, being on the beaches, out at night with the stars and moon,” Mr. Moran said.

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Derby Number 65

Derby Number 65

The sea and coastline around the Island have been roughed up by hurricanes and tropical storms this September, beginning last weekend when Earl blew through and again midweek when more tropical disturbances cropped up. The weather has been unstable: thunderstorms crashed down on Edgartown on Wednesday while West Tisbury stayed dry and sunny.

But the forecast calls for weather patterns to settle down by Sunday, just in time for the opening of the sixty-fifth Martha’s Vineyard Striped Bass and Bluefish Derby.

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Fishing Derby Welcomes Veterans, Kids
Mark Alan Lovewell

Well over 1,200 fishermen are registered in the first week of the 66th annual Martha’s Vineyard Striped Bass and Bluefish Derby. In the first five days of the contest, as much as 2,500 pounds of fish has been weighed in and, as in the past, the contest landings are leaning heavily towards the bluefish.

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It’s Lucky Derby Time, as Shack Turns Rich With Prizes and Pride
Mark Alan Lovewell

, The fishing is about to change big time, when the 66th annual Martha’s Vineyard Striped Bass and Bluefish Derby opens this Sunday. A week of wet weather, remnant of two tropical storms, has only stirred the waters around the Vineyard. The fish are here. Many anglers are poised and waiting.

The month-long fishing contest that offers more than a quarter of a million dollars in prizes is about to begin.

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Veteran Derby Leaders Land Big Prizes
Mark Alan Lovewell

A self-described “eel slinger” who had won the derby twice before and an avid angler from Carver were the grand winners in this year’s 66th annual Martha’s Vineyard Striped Bass and Bluefish Derby which came to a close last weekend.

More than 100 fishermen received awards at a joyfully raucous ceremony Sunday night at Nectar’s. But it was Stephen C. Morris and Richard A. Penney who took home the two top prizes.

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Derby Winners: Steve Morris, Richard Penney

Steve Morris of Oak Bluffs became a three-time derby winner on Sunday when he went home with a brand new 22-foot Eastern with an outboard an trailer for catching the largest bluefish from the shore, a 14.86-pounder.

Richard Penney, who caught a 46.15-pound striped bass from a boat, got the keys to a 2011 Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck.

The two grand prize winners were among more than 100 fishermen who won prizes in the 66th annual Martha’s Vineyard Striped Bass and Bluefish derby this year.

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Fish Miss the Boat: Derby Statistics Reveal Small Showing at the Poles
Mark Alan Lovewell

Call it a race to the top for the old pros. With the end of the 66th annual Martha’s Vineyard Striped Bass and Bluefish Derby one day away, the leaderboard is loaded with big fish caught by well-known fishermen.

A total of nearly 2,700 fishermen registered for the derby this year. Representing all age groups, they’ve lined the shores and been out in boats seeking striped bass, bluefish, false albacore and the elusive Atlantic bonito.

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Offshore Hurricane Stirs Sound, Disappointing Derby Fishermen
Mark Alan Lovewell

Even though a category two hurricane called Ophelia missed us and passed several hundred miles to the east of Martha’s Vineyard last weekend, local rod and reel fisherman have few kind words to say about it. Though far away, turbulent waves from the storm muddied the waters and have nearly shut down the best fishing in this fall’s 66th annual Martha’s Vineyard Striped Bass and Bluefish Derby. Fish are scarce but there is hope it will change this weekend.

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News Update: Monday, October 3 - Weekend Derby Results: Leaderboard Changes in Three Categories

Churning seas over the weekend produced three new derby-leading fish including a 46.15-pound striped bass.

The striper was reeled in from a boat by Richard A. Penney, of Carver, who weighed in Sunday at the Edgartown headquarters of the Martha’s Vineyard Striped Bass and Bluefish Derby. Though the fishing competition continues for two more weeks, Penney’s fish would have won the category in either of the past two years.

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