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(July 26, 2019) The sixth annual Huk Big Fish Classic is underway with weigh-ins today through Sunday in downtown Ocean City.

Brian Roberts, co-director of the tournament said last week that if everything falls into place, records could be broken this year.

“We could reach $600,000 [payout] this year if the conditions are right … the economy is good and fishing is really good,” he said. “A lot of people say it’s one of their favorite fishing tournaments because they can fish how they want to fish and for the species they want.”

Teams can choose between two 32-hour slots: 7 a.m. Friday, July, 26 to 3 p.m. Saturday, July 27, or 7 a.m. Saturday, July 27 to 3 p.m. Sunday, July 28.

Crews can fish the entire 32 hours or come back to the dock and head out offshore again after a break with the same or different anglers. Final registration was Thursday.

Boats can depart from any port between New Jersey and Virginia. Teams can fish up to 125 nautical miles from the Ocean City sea buoy. All fish must be weighed at the Talbot Street Pier.

Tournament weigh-ins will take place from 4-9 p.m., Friday, July 26 and Saturday, July 27. The scale, located between M.R. Ducks and the Angler in downtown Ocean City, will be open from 4-8 p.m. Sunday, July 28.

Weigh-ins are free and open to the public and all are encouraged to attend. Children are invited to get right in front for an up-close view of the fish.

The weigh-ins will also be streamed live this year.

Sixty-seven boats registered for the fifth annual Huk Big Fish Classic last year and $462,350 – a new tournament record – was distributed to the winners.

The mission was to bring the largest fish back to the Talbot Street Pier.

“We had three blue marlin sweep [the largest fish division] and we weighed three swordfish over 180 pounds. There were lots of tuna and dolphin, too,” Roberts said after the 2018 event.

Reel Tight landed the largest fish of the tournament – a 404.5-pound blue marlin. Brian Stewart’s billfish won him and his teammates $244,095.

Matt Jenkins reeled in a 379.5-pound blue marlin aboard Bent Tent. The fish was worth $48,725.

The Underdog came in third place with Jorge Rivera’s 354.5-pound blue marlin. The team was awarded $19,590.

Talbot Street Pier is the original spot where some of the first fish caught off the coast of Ocean City were weighed. Nearly 100 years ago, the pier in downtown Ocean City was bustling with activity as anglers took their daily catches there. Organizers of the Big Fish Classic wanted to bring the action, and big fish, back to the pier.

The tournament will again benefit the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and Raymond A. Wood Foundation, which provides quality of life support for childhood brain tumor survivors and their families.

Some of the meat from fish caught during the tournament will be donated to Diakonia, which provides emergency housing, emergency food services and counseling and assistance for its guests.

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