First-time fisherman lands a northern kingfish

Anna Marie D'Addarie fishing for the first time in her life on Tuesday night. — Courtesy Anna Marie D'Addarie

Anna Marie D’Addarie of Oak Bluffs pondered for years about what to do with the fishing gear of her late husband, Don Creighton, an avid fisherman who died in 2006. For the past 11 years, it had been collecting dust in their Oak Bluffs home, where they began living year-round in 1999. “There was a reason I hung on to his rod and reel,” she told The Times. “He loved to fish, it relaxed him more than anything. I never fished, but I went with him a lot. I’d dress the part, make the lunch; we had a lot of fun. I couldn’t get near it for a while. Then I thought it was time to make a decision: I’m either going to use it or pass it on to someone who has kids.”

Before she made a decision, Ms. D’Addarie got an email from ACE MV, the Vineyard adult education program, and a course caught her eye — a three-hour fishing class with Striped Bass Derby Hall of Famer Janet Messineo. The class was for complete novices only, and was open to only four people.

“I signed up right away,” she said. “There’s all this mystery about fishing; Janet made it very accessible. She showed us three basic knots to tie, and not to be afraid to take the hook out, how to cast, and what to use. She wanted us to be successful. It was a wonderful time — a beautiful sunset on Eastville Beach, and I caught a fish. It doesn’t get any better than that.”

It wasn’t only the first fish Ms. D’Addarie had caught (and released) in her 65 years, it was apparently the first northern kingfish Ms. Messineo has seen caught from a Vineyard beach.

“Janet wasn’t sure what it was at first,” she said. “She went home and looked it up and called me.”

The northern kingfish was caught on squid. “I’m Italian, so I’m used to handling squid, usually for calamari,” she said. “I have a bunch in my freezer at home. I was going to stuff it, but I think some of it is going fishing.”

Ms. D’Addarie plans to keep fishing with the knowledge gained from the class, and with her late husband’s gear. She said she’s making a trip to Coop’s later in the week for new line and some new lures.

“I’m so glad I got that email from ACE MV,” she said.

Northern Kingfish caught at Eastville Beach by Anna Marie D’Addarie. — Courtesy Anna Marie D’Addarie

Big-game hunters come to Oak Bluffs

If you want to see some big fish weighed in this week, take a spin by Oak Bluffs Harbor: You might get lucky.

The Oak Bluffs Bluewater Classic — the kinder, gentler replacement for the Monster Shark tournament — started Wednesday, and will continue through Saturday. The tournament is a combination of catch and release for billfish and limited take for species like yellowfin, bigeye tuna, and wahoo.

The tournament has raised and donated more than $20,000 directly to the Island Autism Group of Martha’s Vineyard, and $14,000 to the MGH Colon Cancer Research Fund in memory of Kevin Glynn. Ten percent of this year’s proceeds will go to the Island Autism Group.

Web gem

A trove of local fishing knowledge, including excellent video and podcasts, is available at Fishing fanatic Ryan Collins created the website, which he constantly updates with fish he and his cohorts are catching onshore and offshore.

Tip of the week

If your live eels kick the bucket while in your bucket, don’t toss them into the drink. Dead eels make great bait. in fact, they can be even better than live eels when fishing the rocky areas stripers like to haunt, because they can’t wedge themselves into crevices.

Tide Charts

Local tides for the coming week can be found at