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Red, White… and Blue Marlin

Introducing the MidAtlantic Cup Blue Marlin Tournament!

July 4th, Independence Day and traditionally the official kickoff of the summer vacation season for most! A day for parades, barbecues, fireworks and celebrations. Early July also gets the juices flowing for big game anglers as the offshore canyons begin to warm up and pelagic visitors make their arrival including the most prized of all billfish species, the majestic blue marlin. This year has already seen some exceptional offshore fishing in the Mid-Atlantic region. It’s well documented plenty of yellowfin and big eye tuna as well as dolphin have already hit the docks at marinas from Sandy Hook to Virginia Beach! Confirmed releases of white marlin and blue marlin have already been tallied at numerous marinas and have crews anxious to get the billfish season underway. It’s setting up to be another exciting offshore season and South Jersey Tournaments has added a very special tournament to its MidAtlantic “Signature Series” of events for 2019.

The MidAtlantic Blue Marlin Cup is set for July 4th and this one prize, winner-take-all event awards a cash payout for the single heaviest blue marlin! More importantly, we’ve made this event very convenient as you can fish from your home marina. Sail from any port, any inlet and fish wherever you like no matter where the good water is! Run as far as you like because there are no boundaries! From Sandy Hook to Virginia Beach several weigh stations have been enlisted for this event. Entry fee is set at $2000 and can be made by standard commercial means either by mail or online registration at Please note after June 19th only internet credit card payments will be accepted. Each participant will receive an entry confirmation number prior to July 4th which will confirm the participant’s entry into event. Deadline for entry is 5 p.m. on July 3rd.

The possibility of winning a large cash payout is definitely enticing, but there’s more! The winner will also receive an “Admirals Package” fishing vacation in Nosara, Costa Rica courtesy of Fishing Nosara ( The package includes seven nights lodging at the luxurious Casa Capitan at Nosara Paradise Rentals plus four full days of fishing for up to six anglers and much more. The value of this package is well over $6800!

Need an additional nudge to join the fun? For those looking to go in deep The MidAtlantic Cup Blue Marlin Tournament coincides with the Blue Marlin World Cup and participation in both events is permitted so you’ll have the chance to stake your claim as not only the best blue marlin crew in the Mid-Atlantic but also among the best in the world!

As mentioned earlier boats may sail from any port at any time to reach their desired fishing grounds. Fishing hours are set for 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on July 4th however boats may catch bait prior to lines in. The minimum length for a blue marlin to qualify is 106” lower jaw fork length. All blue marlin below the minimum length shall be released. Any fish to be weighed must be brought, aboard the boat on which it was caught, to an Official weigh station by midnight. The winning fish shall be the single heaviest blue marlin caught in accordance with tournament rules. Prize money shall be 80% of all tournament entry fees. Participants shall comply with IGFA rules and must use only non-offset circle hooks with natural bait or natural bait/lure combinations though J-hooks can be utilized when employing artificial lures. Any Dacron, monofilament or braided line with a manufacturer’s stated breaking strength of 100-pound test is allowed. Additionally, any line labeled “IGFA-rated” or “Tournament-rated” with a breaking strength of 130-pound test or less is also permitted. Backing of any line test is allowed as long as the top shot does not exceed the 130-pound test IGFA/Tournament designation or 100-pound test manufacturer’s stated breaking strength. Note the IGFA top shot and backing rule is stated as follows: The catch shall be classified under the breaking strength of the first five meters (16.5’) of line directly preceding the double line, leader or hook. This section must be comprised of a single, homogenous piece of line.

Note this is a one-day only event and there is no weather day or weather committee. It is the responsibility of each participant to decide in advance whether or not to fish on July 4th. Tournament rules and available weigh stations can be found at or by calling 609-884-0177. Event updates will be pushed out throughout the day on the South Jersey Tournaments app. Download it from the Apple App and Google Play stores. You can also follow the day’s action on the South Jersey Tournaments Facebook page as well.

The offshore season upon us and plenty of tuna species and dolphin, prime forage species for blue marlin, are now being found and caught in the canyons off the Mid-Atlantic coast. Why not consider participating in the 2019 MidAtlantic Cup Blue Marlin Tournament? You’ll no doubt be fishing offshore on July 4th anyway! Save the barbecue for celebrating later in the evening when you raise an adult beverage and reminisce about the winning blue marlin piling on the right long!

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