Vineyarders Embrace, Fish Bite, In Honor of Wounded Warriors
Remy Tumin
Sunday afternoon was the first time Colton Wiley of Keofauqua, Iowa had ever seen the ocean. Three months ago he was shot in the legs in Afghanistan, leaving the 19 year old wheelchair bound. Now, on a beautiful September evening on Menemsha Beach, he was watching his first sunset over the Atlantic Ocean. “It’s beautiful and completely eye opening,” he said later that night during dinner at the Beach Plum Inn. Mr. Wiley was one of 10 wounded and recovering soldiers who visited the Island this week for the fourth annual American Heroes Saltwater Challenge.
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In Week Three, Derby Leaders Unchanged
Ivy Ashe

Despite a flurry of action around headquarters as the Saltwater Challenge Wounded Warriors weighed in their daily catches, one important feature of the small building at the foot of Main street in Edgartown remains stagnant.

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Who Will Win the Boat, Truck? Derby Sponsors Relish the Role
Mark Alan Lovewell
As the derby enters its third week, many fishermen no doubt have begun to dream about the two grand prizes — a new 22-foot Eastern center console boat with outboard and trailer, and a new 2012 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 truck.

Eastern Boats has provided the winning boat for four years. The Clay Family Dealership has provided the truck for 13 years. One of the four top shore fishermen with the largest fish will walk away with the boat. One of the top four boat fishermen will walk away with the truck.

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Diapers to Derby Winner is True Keeper
Chris Fischer
In 2005 my sister Molly, then 12 years old, caught an enormous striped bass. It was so big when she finally hauled it onto the boat she backed away from it in fear and almost fell head over heels off the side of the boat into the churning ocean. I remember her telling me she thought she had caught an alligator. It is a story that has been told over and over again since then: a 12-year-old girl catching a giant bass and winning the Martha’s Vineyard Striped Bass and Bluefish Derby.
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Little Anglers Reel in Big Wins During Second Week of Derby
Mark Alan Lovewell

On Thursday the largest striped bass caught so far in this year’s 67th Martha’s Vineyard Striped Bass and Bluefish Derby was weighed in. Peter (Pete) J. Spengler, 75, of Cuttyhunk and Westport, Conn., caught his fish at 9:05 a.m. aboard Capt. Duane Lynch’s boat.

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Dandy Derby Start as Bluefish Lead the Way, Stripers Follow
Ivy Ashe
Over 2,600 pounds of fish have crossed the scales in the first five days of the 67th Striped Bass and Bluefish Derby, and they’re coming from all sectors of Vineyard waters.

“It’s been stellar, absolutely stellar,” Amy Coffey, who has volunteered at the weigh-in station for over 20 years, said on Thursday afternoon. “We had all four species weighed in from both boat and shore [in the all-tackle divisions], which is unusual for the first week.” Ms. Coffey estimated that it has been five years since the phenomenon last occurred.

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Lure of the Derby Calls Them All
Mark Alan Lovewell
They came together at the end of the day Wednesday to catch fish. Backed by the glitter of fast-moving water, more than 20 anglers, most of them participants in the Martha’s Vineyard Striped Bass and Bluefish Derby, stood at the far end of the Menemsha jetty casting their lures in close quarters. The sun was brilliant above the horizon. The Menemsha buoy, a ringing bell, filled the air with sound. Ian Thurber, 31, a landscaper from West Tisbury, arrived at 5 p.m. after a full day of work. “This is one of many of my favorite places,” he said. “When there are no fish, it is relaxing.
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Gone Fishing

As if on cue for the sixty-seventh Martha’s Vineyard Striped Bass and Bluefish Derby, the fish are running again.

There was a bluefish feeding frenzy at the Cape Pogue gut late one afternoon last week, one of those churning blitzes where you could throw out an old shoe and catch a fish. And out on Nantucket Sound, boats have been lined up like summer traffic at Five Corners as fishermen chase the silvery schools of bonito now flashing through the cooling saltwater. There are reports of stripers being caught on the north shore.

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Fishing Fever Is Contagious At Derby Time
Mark Alan Lovewell

‘Tis derby season. In just two days the Vineyard community will undergo a large transformation as the 67th annual Martha’s Vineyard Striped Bass and Bluefish Derby, the Island’s annual Olympics for fisherman, begins.

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Island Prepares for Fishing Derby Launch
Mark Alan Lovewell

The 56th annual Martha's Vineyard Striped Bass and Bluefish Derby begins at 12:01 a.m. tomorrow, a minute past midnight. The first groggy fishermen of the month-long contest will line up to weigh in their catch when the derby headquarters opens at 8 a.m. in Edgartown.

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