Willacy County Young Farmers Fishing Tournament Held

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by Tony Vindell/LFN

The 34th annual Willacy County Young Farmers Fishing Tournament was held Saturday, May 26 in Port Mansfield.
The annual tournament is held on Memorial Day weekend to raise scholarship money for high school students and for several Rio Grande Valley non-charitable organizations such as Teach the Children and Texas Child Protective Services.

About 200 anglers of all ages participated and many of them left with prizes, including money and trophies.

The fishing tournament provides a boost to the PM economy, creating a windfall for restaurants, fishing guides and rental businesses.

Named after the late “Bullet” Bob Austin, the tournament has two categories, bay and off-shore.

Prizes were given for the heaviest fish species caught, but everything has to follow the tournament regulations and those set by the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department such as legal length of a fish and daily possessions.

The legal size of red fish caught is 20 to 28 inches long with no more than three in possession and speckled trout is 15 to 25 inches in length and with no more than five in possession.

For flounder, the minimum length is 14 inches and the daily possession is five.

These three fish are among the most sought by anglers in bay fishing tournaments.

The top prize went to an angler who caught the heaviest of all three combined, referred to in fishing jargon as Texas Grand Slam.

In the off-shore division, prizes were awarded for red snapper, bonito, shark, king mackerel and ling.

In addition to fishing, the Memorial Weekend event included raffles, a silent auction, music and tasty food prepared by some of the tournament’s top chefs.

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