Key West, Florida Keys – Angling teams targeting kingfish can vie for mastery and substantial cash prizes during the 2024 Key West Kingfish Mayhem tournament. Slated for Thursday through Sunday, Jan. 11-14, the event takes place in waters where sizeable king mackerel gather each year before their annual migration.
The tournament features two distinct divisions. The open division welcomes all interested teams, while the pro division is open only to registrants in the elite multi-leg Kingfish Mayhem Pro Series.
The open division team that weighs in the heaviest kingfish, also known as king mackerel, is to take home a $10,000 first prize. The second- and third-place finishers receive $3,000 and $2,000, respectively, and cash prizes are to be presented through fifth place. Prize structure and award amounts are based on a field of 40 registered boats.
Teams also can buy into optional entry categories to be eligible for additional cash awards.
Events kick off Thursday, Jan. 11, with a 4-6 p.m. final registration for both the pro series and open divisions at Oceans Edge Resort & Marina, located at 5950 Peninsular Ave. on Stock Island. A captains meeting follows at 7:30 p.m.
Fishing is scheduled all day Friday and Saturday, Jan. 12-13, for pro series teams and all day Saturday for those in the open tournament.
Rules mandate that each boat team in the pro series can weigh one kingfish for points each day, or two fish Friday and no fish Saturday. Each team in the open division can weigh one fish Saturday for points. The weigh-in location is Oceans Edge Marina.
To be eligible to weigh their fish, boat teams must check in visually with the tournament committee by 5 p.m.
Awards are to be presented at noon Sunday, Jan. 14, at Oceans Edge Marina.
The entry fee for the open division is $500 per team through Jan. 1, 2024, and $600 thereafter. Any number of anglers can make up a team.
Key West visitor information: fla-keys.com/keywest or 1-800-LAST-KEY
Lower Keys visitor information: fla-keys.com/lowerkeys or 1-800-872-3722
Florida Keys fishing information: fla-keys.com/fishing/