I'a Lapo'a Game Fishing Tournament opens Saturday at Sadie's in Malaloa

Photo Credit: 
THRILL OF THE CATCH: Fishing with the Double Hooked crew, lady angler Tian Savusa, rejoices with a beautiful yellowfin tuna in a past I'a Lapo'a Tournament, sponsored each year by Steinlager. CLICK for more I'a Lapo'a photos.

(PAGO PAGO, American Samoa) — The annual Steinlager I'a Lapo'a Game Fishing Tournament opens with a ceremony on Saturday at Sadie's Thompson Inn at Malaloa, anglers gearing up for the shot gun start Monday, April 30.

Wednesday, May 2 has been designated as Ladies and Junior Day, according to information distributed to members of the Pago Pago Game Fishing Association, from I'a Lapo'a Event Manager Debbs Cox.

Special prizes include a $1,000 check, sponsored by Island Cargo Support, for the largest dogtooth tuna catch (over 100 pounds) and fish art like the original piece of three game fish painted on wood and mounted onto metal by Artist Joe Fish and myfishartshop.com.

Boats will gather for the shot gun start 7 a.m. Monday, April 30 at the boat harbor in Fagatogo for six days of fishing.

Registration and the opening ceremony is scheduled for 3-5 p.m. Saturday, April 28. The awards and closing ceremony is 6 p.m., Saturday, May 5.

Prizes continue to mount for I'a Lapo'a, Cox saying the committee is "really looking forward to our event" and asks participating anglers to pre-register their boats, submit names of crew members and indicate who will captain each team.

"You may want to sponsor a prize or something funny or help with our efforts in making this tournament a success," wrote Cox. "All donations are welcome!"

Pago Pago-based boat Double Hooked, captained by Peter Crispin, placed first, claiming the grand prize in the Samoa International Game Fishing Tournament that closed April 21.

Anglers from the Independent State of Samoa are expected at I'a Lapo'a.