Sharknado has become a national phenomenon, and we’re not saying it’s ALL thanks to the East End, but let’s face it—our shark tournaments are awesome, and sharks have a long, interesting connection to local history. Montauk fisherman Frank Mundus, who died in 2008, is thought to be the inspiration for the character of Quint in Peter Benchley’s bestselling novel Jaws. The book, of course, was adapted by Steven Spielberg into what would become one of the most acclaimed and influential films of all time. (We’ll just pretend In the Heart of the Sea didn’t happen.)
Real sharks have been seen from, and washing up on, Hamptons shores. And let’s not forget the most famous musical sharks—Gene Casey and the Lone Sharks, who perform in various venues throughout the summer. But shark tournaments are the best place to catch these gorgeous predators.
30th Annual Star Island Shark Tournament
6/16–6/18. The beloved shark tournament returns. Sharks that don’t meet weight requirements can be tagged and released. Contact Star Island if you want to participate but don’t own your own boat—you can charter one. Yacht Club & Marina, Montauk Point. starislandyc.com
The 46th Annual Montauk Marine Basin Shark Tournament
6/23–6/25. This year’s tournament will have $50,000 in cash prizes. Red Line Films will be on-hand doing segments for NBC Sports. Montauk Marine Basin, 426 West Lake Drive, Montauk. 631-668-5900 marinebasin.com
4th Annual Shark’s Eye No-Kill Tournament
7/15–7/17. No sharks will be killed during this event! This “tag” tournament is a special catch-tag-release shark tournament. A major cash prize is awarded to the winner. Past participants include artist April Gornik and singer Jimmy Buffett. The Montauk Marine Basin is open year-round and is host to several activities and competitions throughout the summer. Held in memory of Carl Darenberg, Jr. Darenberg’s Montauk Marine Basin, 426 West Lake Drive, Montauk. 631-668-5900 marinebasin.com