Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament in Morehead City still on, but without social events

Crew of the Top Dog celebrates their record-setting catch in the 2019 Big Rock. [The Big Rock on Facebook/Grace Bell Photography]

Organizers of The Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament have announced the fishing events will happen as planned during the second week of June, but without the usual social gatherings in Morehead City.

During its monthly board meeting earlier this month, The Big Rock Board of Directors voted unanimously to proceed with the 62nd Annual Big Rock Tournament and the 23rd Annual Keli Wagner Lady Angler Tournament.

A number of Outer Banks-based boats fish out of Hatteras village during the tournament that is the largest in North Carolina, drawing more than 150 boats and a purse that in 2019 topped $2.8 million.

The tournaments will begin as scheduled with the KWLA Lady Angler Tournament on June 6 and the Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament competition June 8-13.

The board of directors has been monitoring the impacts and responses to COVID-19 and feel the tournaments can proceed safely and responsibly with no social events, while asking that participants and spectators at the docks on the Crystal Coast to adhere to social distancing and other health precautions which are now well known to all.

With the tournament competition schedule in place, the board is continuing to work on details for the balance of tournament week.

As usual, you can listen to the tournament VHF radio feed featuring Randy Ramsey, watch the weigh-ins on Big Rock TV and follow tournament results at and on the Big Rock App. Online viewing of the tournament will be enhanced through Facebook and there are working plans for a drive-thru dinner on Wednesday night for tournament participants.

The sale of Big Rock apparel helps fund charitable donations which support many worthwhile efforts in Carteret County and eastern North Carolina. 62nd Annual Big Rock t-shirts remain a popular online purchase item and our retail store should be opening soon.

In these extraordinary circumstances, the Big Rock could not happen without our dedicated staff and volunteers, our many sponsors, and our faithful participants and supporters who make up the Big Rock Family. We look forward to welcoming you to Morehead City safely and responsibly to celebrate the 62nd Annual Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament.